“I am a nerd!” was the answer of Jim Brooks upon being asked “How would you describe yourself?”. Sitting sideways at her desk, Mrs. Gatewood laughed as she talked to another student. The others in the background appeared engaged in their own excited conversations about “who did what at the mall”. Jim, on the other hand, looked down at his questionnaire and wondered “How long would this really take?” I looked at him and he signaled me to come to the back seats. Wearily walking to the back, Jim pulled up the sleeves of his yellow polo shirt and sat down on the chair. It was 1:19 pm and the temperature was around 60 degrees Fahrenheit as I could feel the cold air, through the opened crack in the glass window, while it touched a part of the back of my neck. Jim rubbed his hands on his blue, denim jeans, which distinguished the white adidas shoes, and looked around the gloomy atmosphere of the classroom while the white clouds gathered in the light blue sky. His puka shell necklace (no clue what this is?) contrasted with his shiny, silver watch and his blonde spiked hair stood as straight as the blades of grass. After settling down next to him, we discussed his past life, hobbies, sports, friends and I learned about the favorites of this Science Award winner.
Jim is proud to be a member of a loving family, which includes his father, mother and an elder brother. Jim was born on August 3, 1987 in Sacramento. Since then he has lived in the same place considering that “I love my room; it’s the best place to be!” Being highly under the influence of his father, Jim wishes to follow his steps and become a successful person in life. His father, Mr. Dan Brooks, is the vice president in a private company, “Thermo Genesis”; indeed, a loving father and always helped Jim in his problems. On the other hand, Mrs. Cindy Brooks is a respectful clerk in the emergency room. Jim also has a 19 year old brother, Brian, who often looks after him; he is a sophomore at Sierra Oaks College.
As far as he can remember, Jim thinks that his great grandparents are natives of Poland. However, his parents have grown up in Sacramento and hope that when Jim graduates from college, he would settle here too. He is proud to be an American citizen and follows the Jewish religion. “It’s not the hours you put in your work that counts, it’s the work you put in the hours” or “Real success is finding your lifework in the work that you love.” Though quoted by Sam Ewing, these words are followed by Jim’s tender heart. Jim loves his family and hopes to become a better person when he grows up.
Other than his family life, Jim believes that “a good education makes a successful man.” Being highly influenced by his father, Jim cares about who he wants to be now, not who he would end up as in the future. On being asked what he considers as a “successful” person, his answer was “a successful person is one who is satisfied and who has turned out as he had hoped for”; Jim hopes to be one of those “satisfied” people. In the past, Jim attended Gold River Elementary School, Barret Middle School and presently he is happy being a sophomore at Rio Americano High School. He achieved the “Science Award” for participation and having the highest percentage of a 107.9% in his 8th grade, which makes him feel proud of himself. If given an option to rebuild the curriculum of the school year, Jim wishes nothing to be changed but “may be we could have a better landscape.”
Since kindergarten to the present, the most influential teacher is his 8th grade teacher, Mr. Strobel. The teacher taught his students to face challenges and work hard to become a good citizen. Jim described to me the 7th grade, English scrap book experience where he faced the challenge of procrastinating and had to handle decisions under pressure. Jim’s past memories were of a carefree and optimistic nature and now he wishes to work diligently and get into Stanford University. He desires to be an anesthesiologist when he grows up. In short, Jim has a main goal of being successful in life and wishes to go to college and lead a bright future.
In addition, Jim has many hobbies and interests, which include playing sports and collecting miniatures. With the volleyball season approaching, he wishes to tryout for the volleyball team of our school. His favorite sports include baseball, which he has been playing since the past 9 years and soccer, which has been his favorite sport since kindergarten. In his free time, he also prefers to play racquetball and golf. On being questioned about his hobbies, the athlete replies, “I have 6000 baseball cards.” Jim has had the passion for collecting miniatures, baseball cards and autographs since he was a kid. His favorite baseball player is Barry Bonds of the Giants team. “I’m sort of crazy so I have 3 posters of him, one of which is life size, in my room, three plaques with cards, and an autographed ball with his signature”. “I also make a good babysitter” he said when we talked about his jobs; he likes to baby-sit his neighbor, little Sam. The money that he earns from his day to day job is spent on video games and all kinds of DVDs. As a result, Jim is a good athlete, who is interested in baseball and collections of miniatures.
After discussing his hobbies and family life, I learned about the favorites of this Science Award winner. Jim is highly interested in Japanese culture and believes “It’s authentic and really cool”. He loves to eat Japanese food, especially sushi with rice; which is indeed a mouth watering dish. His favorite restaurant, where he finds his favorite food is the “Taiko Sushi Restaurant.” His favorite subject at school is math and science and the best book that he has ever read is Andromeda Strain by “Michael Crichton.”
He likes to hear all kinds of music, whether it is on the radio or a DVD. He likes to wear hats and has a huge collection of those at home; varying in sizes and color, many of them are merely baseball caps. Jim likes to watch movies in his free time or while spending time with his parents, and his favorite movie is “Sergeant Bilko”. Orange is his favorite color. Upon being asked “How would you describe yourself?” Jim gave it a lot of thought and replied, “I guess I am funny, helpful and a good student.” Jim has many favorites and is interested in Japanese culture.
Other than his studious life he likes to spend time with his friends and near acquaintances, which include his cousins. He has many acquaintances, but his best friends include Drew Blythe and his elder brother Brian. “Drew is a lot like me and I get along very well with people that think similar to me…and he’s odd” replied Jim. At school Drew has been his best friend for years and both of them get along very well. Upon being questioned what the word “friend” meant to him, he casually replied, “A friend is one who you can always turn to in cases of emergency and who is a lot like you in your actions.”
Jim and Drew went to the same elementary and middle schools and now they are again together in high school. In addition, they were also in the same soccer team and have many classes together. At home, he likes to spend time with his brother and get advice from him. Other school and outside friends include Michael, David and Tyler, who have always been there to help him either in his homework or just solve daily problems. He also likes to talk to his cousins, and whenever they are together they like to play video games or watch movies. Jim is of a friendly nature who likes to be with friends and cousins.
With sights set high and working as hard as possible, Jim Brooks has a great personality. He wants to do something that would be regarded as a great achievement, and for which he would be recognized and remembered. He loves to spend time with his family and friends. Being interested in Japanese culture, he wants to go to Japan some day and learn the language. Talking to Jim was a great experience and I learned about his interests, hobbies, friends, sports, main goals and his family. Jim is optimistic about life, hopes that his future will be a promising one, and his experiences will lead him a long way.