Mailvox: various and sundry

First, a prayer request from RS:

I’m a long time reader of your blog and I know the most of the Ilk are Christians and know first hand the power of prayer. I have a friend whose little girl is going through a very rare form of cancer. She is a fiery redhead and now is facing the loss of her hair due to the chemo and radiation. Would you please ask the Ilk to pray for this little one? She is facing this bravely, but her parents are having a very hard time. It would mean the world to her knowing that so many people are praying for her and her family. Her name is Libby and she is seven years old.

BS asks the wrong person about law school:

I’m very intrigued with your musings regarding lawyers. Are there any situations where going to law school is beneficial? I’ve read some law school guidebooks since you started mentioning this and some of them say that unless you attend one of the top-14 schools (Yale, Stanford, Harvard, Columbia, Chicago, NYU, Berkeley, Michigan, Penn, Virginia, Duke, Cornell, Georgetown & Northwestern) then you may as well just forget it and not go to law school as it won’t be worth the time & effort. If a kid were to get into Columbia or Chicago, would it then be OK for him to attend or even then would he need to get scholarship money to make it a worthwhile investment? Let’s assume that if you do not get into one of the aforementioned top-14 schools that it automatically disqualifies you from attending. In your mind what are the scenarios in which it would be enough to make it worth the effort? Is acceptance into the top-14 enough?

Since the supply of lawyers is already excessive, I see no reason to go to law school unless you’re going to a top five school and you have fairly serious connections in the legal world, by which I mean that you’re going to be made a partner barring any major criminal convictions. Merely being able to get into Columbia or Chicago is irrelevant, sans connections you’re still a dime a dozen.

Hermit, meanwhile, inquires concerning calcio:

My oldest son, who is 7, is a month into his first season of soccer. I don’t have a ton of experience in many contact sports, but I did play soccer for a few years when I was his age. His biggest current weakness is lack of aggressiveness. One kid on his team isn’t the best player, but is always on top of the ball and keeps the opponents off. Which, for now at least, makes up for his lack of skill. I’ve tried to implement Game and assertiveness teaching elsewhere in his life, with mixed results. I was considering doing a daily boot camp ala Full Metal Jacket: “This is my soccer ball, there are many like it, but this is mine. Without my ball, I am useless…”, “Show me your war face!!”, or something to that effect. Do you have any advice on this?

I found that the best way was to simply play in the backyard every now and then and have the kid take the ball away from you. Do it slowly at first, then gradually pick up speed. Once he’s not afraid of attacking an adult running relatively fast, he’s not going to be afraid of attacking kids on the ball who are much closer to his size. It’s also useful, when he’s on the bench, to point out the difference between kids going in hard and kids just sticking their feet out. Ender had a terrible game two weeks ago because he was playing very tentatively after missing a few games on top of a week’s break in the schedule for spring vacation. But now that he understands the importance of controlled aggression, he went out last weekend and had an excellent game while marking the opposing team’s best striker and holding him scoreless. In general, the only way to deal with instinctive fears in sport is to expose the young player to them and gradually help them become inured to it.