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"The old Philosophy Professor"
 (author unknown)

I had a philosophy professor who was the quintessential
eccentric philosopher.

His disheveled appearance was highlighted by a
well-worn tweed sport coat and poor-fitting thick
glasses, which often rested on the tip of his nose.

Every now and the, as most philosophy professors do, he
would go off on one of those esoteric and existential
"what's the meaning of life" discussions.

Many of those discussions went nowhere, but there
were a few that really hit home.  This was one of

"Respond to the following questions by a show of
hands," my professor instructed.

"How many of you can tell me something about your
parents?"  Everyone's hand went up.

"How many of you can tell me something about your
grandparents?"  About three-fourths of the class
raised their hands.

"How many of you can tell me something about your
great-grandparents?"  Two out of sixty students
raised their hands.

"Look around the room," he said.  "In just two short
generations hardly any of us even know who our own
great-grandparents were.

Oh sure, maybe we have an old, tattered photograph
tucked away in a musty cigar box or know the classic
family story about how one of them walked 5 miles to
school barefoot.

But how many of us really know who they were, what
they thought, what they were proud of, what they
were afraid of, or what they dreamed about?

Think about that. Within three generations our
ancestors are all but forgotten.  Will this happen
to you?

"Here's a better question. Look ahead three
generations.  You are long gone.

Instead of you sitting in this room, now it's your

What will they have to say about you?  Will they know
about you?  Or will you be forgotten, too?

"Is your life going to be a warning or an example?

What legacy will you have?  The choice is yours.
Class dismissed."

Nobody rose from their seat for a good five minutes.

Lois Caywood Guffy
Byron Oklahoma.