“I did not fail you, you failed yourself !!!
I gave you all the tools you needed, you chose not to use them”


Those are the words of Mr David Lucia, my eighth grade English teacher, a man I admire greatly and have a deep respect for.
It is the response he gave to me when I asked him why he failed me in his class, and those words are something I have never forgotten.

Because I did choose, not to use the tools he gave me, I had to repeat the eighth grade, all of it, not just his class, and it changed me forever.


You come to a realization in your life, when someone has the fortitude to be totally honest and blunt with you, and they do not care about the repercussions, that something in your life needs to change.
What he told me that day could have gone one of two ways, I could have had the attitude….. you did this, you failed me, to inflate my ego, and pass the blame on to someone other than myself.

But it went the other way, I took responsibility for failing his class, and for getting grades that were barely passing in general.
The next year, I went from being a C, D and F (mostly D and one F) student, to being an A and B student, and I made damn sure I was an A student in Mr. Lucia’s English class.

The year after that, my sophomore year, I took no electives, no study hall, I doubled all my major classes, I took tenth and eleventh grade in the same year.
It was a lot of work, and left me with little time for anything but school and studying.

However, it made it so I would graduate on time with my original class,

the class of 1987 baby!!!

All because one teacher had enough courage to tell me
“I did not fail you, you failed yourself !!!
I gave you all the tools you needed, you chose not to use them”
For that, I thank you Mr Lucia.
Your words are always with me in everything I do, whether it is running my business, being a parent, or writing my blog or my book.

I told you that story so we could get to this one.

Mr. Lucia’s words are never far from my thoughts, and they certainly made themselves heard on this journey I am on of becoming a published author.

A long time ago I made a change in my life, and a promise to myself that I would not fail at any endeavor I took on, I would see it through until I achieved success.

So Mr. Lucia, and all of you, my dedicated readers, whom to me are more than that, you are friends.

I will not fail myself, I will not fail you!!!


I am a writer I am the host of the blog "Where The Grey Matter Pours Out", where I blog about writing and my personal experiences in writing, and in writing my book, and how I have gotten to were I am at.. I post two original post's a week on Sunday and Friday, and on Wednesday I re-blog one of my subscribers post's that I have read that week in an effort to build a stronger blogging community. You can follow me around twitter @ jim_cantwell

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