This past month has put an emphasis on persistence in our reading of Og and our lessons. I chosen to view October Sky starring Jake Gyllenhaal as an example of how persistence pays off. It was a story of a teen boy named Homer, growing up in a coal-mining town where it is almost impossible for anyone to have a future in anything other than coal-mining unless they were an exceptional athlete that might be able to get a football scholarship.
One night Homer sees the Sputnik satellite flying over a clear starlit night sky. He becomes totally enamored with the idea of space, which couldn’t be further from his reality of a future in coal-mining. He decides he wants to build a rocket. From the very beginning he is met with resistance and disapproval, especially from his father, who happens to be the head of the coal-mining operation.
Despite peer pressure, he risks his reputation to befriend the school outcast and begin his journey of learning about rocketry. Homer and his new scholarly friend begin exprimenting. Two of his buddies reluctantly, at first, tag along. Soon he learns from his teacher that if he wins the science fair, he will be able to compete nationally and have the chance to win a college scholarship. He begins building rockets that fail one after another. His father bans him from building any more rockets on the towns property which forces him to walk 8 miles one way with all of his tools and supplies. He is arrested and accused of starting a forest fire. His father sustains a head injury that leaves him no choice but to do what he dreads and go to work in the mines to support his family.
In the end, nothing that happened to him was able to squelch his dream. The “Rocket Boys” go on to win the science fair, and Homer gets to travel to Indiana to enter in the National Science Fair. As a result of his continued persisence, he wins the national science fair, is awarded a college scholarship, and even the respect and admiration of his father along with his entire town.
Great dreams will be met with great obstacles. Ambition is the path to success. Persistence is the vehicle you arrive in. -Bill Bradley First, you have to have a dream. If it has been hibernating, revive it and go after it with perisitence!