The following college application is a real one. Assume that all other

material is in and at least acceptable, therefore making this essay

the primary evaluation tool. If you were an

admissions officer, based on this essay as the deciding factor,

would you accept this student?

Give your thumbs  up or thumbs down. Then in a couple of sentences

give a brief summary of your reasoning.




I am a dynamic figure, often seen scaling walls and crushing ice. I

have been known to remodel train stations on my lunch breaks, making

them more efficient in the area of heat retention. I translate ethnic

slurs for Cuban refugees. I write award-winning operas, I manage time

efficiently.  Occasionally, I tread water for three days in a row.


I woo women with my sensuous and godlike trombone playing, I can pilot

bicycles up severe inclines with unflagging speed, and I cook

Thirty-Minute Brownies in twenty minutes. I am an expert in stucco, a

veteran of love, and an outlaw in Peru.


Using only a hoe and a large glass of water, I once single-handedly

defended a small village in the Amazon Basin from a horde of ferocious

army ants. I play bluegrass cello, I was scouted by the Mets, I am the

subject of numerous documentaries. When I'm bored, I build large

suspension bridges in my yard. I enjoy urban hang gliding. On

Wednesdays, after school, I repair electrical appliances free of



I am an abstract artist, a concrete analyst, and a ruthless bookie.

Critics worldwide swoon over my original line of corduroy evening wear.

I don't perspire. I am a private citizen, yet I receive fan mail. I

have been caller number nine and have won the weekend passes. Last

summer I toured New Jersey with a traveling centrifugal-force

demonstration. I bat .400. My deft floral arrangements have earned me

fame in international botany circles. Children trust me.


I can hurl tennis rackets at small moving objects with deadly accuracy.

I once read Paradise Lost, Moby Dick, and David Copperfield in one day

and still had time to refurbish an entire dining room that evening. I

know the exact location of every food item in the supermarket. I have

performed several covert operations for the CIA. I sleep once a week;

when I do sleep, I sleep in a chair. While on vacation in Canada, I

successfully negotiated with a group of terrorists who had seized a

small bakery. The laws of physics do not apply to me.


I balance, I weave, I dodge, I frolic, and my bills are all paid. On

weekends, to let off steam, I participate in full-contact origami.

Years ago I discovered the meaning of life but forgot to write it

down.  I have made extraordinary four course meals using only a mouli

and a toaster oven. I breed prize-winning clams. I have won bullfights

in San Juan, cliff-diving competitions in Sri Lanka, and spelling bees

at the Kremlin. I have played Hamlet, I have performed open-heart

surgery, and I have spoken with Elvis.


But I have not yet gone to college.