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Don't be a drop-out!

Dear Orange Hood, I hope you don't mind me calling you that because I don't know your name and your Orange Hood was the only thing that came to mind.

You probably don't know I'm writing this to you. We met in Bahrain University's Sakhir Campus on December 7.

I guided you to the accounts department. In our brief chat there, I asked you, "Why are you leaving, having problems with the study?"

You replied, "No, actually people here stare a lot and I don't like it."

I'm writing all this because I think you should not leave the university because of some mannerless dolts staring you down and I wanted to get my message to you.

My first semester here was a ruckus, I hated it, still hate it and wanted to drop out, just like you.

But my dad came to my rescue. He said if I were to drop out because of academic reasons it was fine, but if I were to drop out because I wasn't able to bear the looks I was getting from students, it was not a valid reason.

He told me never to run away from what I was afraid of, always stay in the battlefield and fight, not physically but with my attitude.

It's like Ralph Waldo Emerson who said, "A hero is no braver than an ordinary man, but he is braver five minutes longer."

Your five minutes have just begun. Don't let some good-for-nothing-staring-nobody to influence your life.

I hate it when people stare, but isn't it like running away?

I mean no matter wherever you go, you'll meet people you don't like your whole life. Will you drop out then? You can't run away from your problems forever, you'll have to face them one day. Why not now?

If you can't survive in a university full of staring dolts, then how are you going to survive in the real world?

My request: please don't give up on the university because of some staring nobodies. Come back and show them that they don't matter. Don't let them win.

That's what I have been doing for the past year. Every day I get stared down, especially in that grand corridor that connects the library and the business food court, but I endure the stares and walk past them like I'm walking past empty benches.

Most of my friends face the same problem, but we are not running away, we are fighting and so should you.

No matter what you do, the world will always have a problem with you, so like a smart person listen to what it says but ignore its opinions and biases.

And to all those staring dolts out there, gee, you must be so happy you scared another person into dropping out. It's party time for you, isn't it?

What else could be more embarrassing than the fact that your bad manners made some one drop out.

Don't you know it is rude to stare? Stop it!

Orange Hood's guide

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Publication:Gulf Daily News (Manama, Bahrain)
Date:Dec 14, 2011
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