Two years ago Zach was 5 and Asia was 3. I asked Zach about his plans for college. “Duke”, he replied. Asia looked up. “I want to go to Duke too”, she hollered. “Sorry”, I said, “You’ll have to go somewhere else. You can’t both go to Duke.” I thought for a second. Then I remembered Lilla Fisher. She was once a homeroom student of mine. I remember thinking that if I ever had a daughter I would want her to be like Lilla: intelligent, confident, attractive, and kind. Later she graduated from Brown University.
“Asia”, I said, “You get to go to Brown.” She started to cry. “I don’t wanna go to Brown”, she blubbered, “I wanna go to Duke”. Unwilling to back down from my anti-same-school policy, I countered with, “Fine, Asia goes to Duke, and Zach, you get to go to Brown.” At this point both kids broke down in tears. The sheer absurdity of the situation began to dawn on me. I caved. “Guys, guess what? You can BOTH go to Brown!” They held each other tight, jumped up and down, squealing in unison, “WE’RE GOING TO BROOOOOOOOWWWWWWWN!” I don’t think I’ve ever seen them so happy.
In reality, the Neill family finances being what they are, my kids will probably attend a third rate commuter school similar to the one I attended. (The same school that employs Bill Ayers). But at least they’ll be able to attend the SAME school!