Mr W’s College Recommendation Fee Schedule
I had a rep for knocking out the best sure-fire college recs around, to the point where after a few years at my first prep school, in the ’70s and ’80s, kids with the flimsiest, most tenuous tethers to me would plead. I could rarely say No and they knew it. The story was that my letters to admissions officers were so smashing that even though seniors knew I’d never lie or stretch, even the ones whose most meaningful tie to me was a ‘hiya’ on the soccer field or b-ball court, would ask.
It got to the point where Gideon, an enterprising student (and, of course, now a successful L.A. Attorney) suggested I publish
MR W’s COLLEGE RECOMMENDATION FEE SCHEDULE
And so we did.
Fifty flyers were printed and distributed and while perhaps they didn’t tickle the heart of every admin, the Headmaster, I knew, would privately love it and he did.
We considered including a shot of me on the flyer looking like a TV clear-plastic-slipcover pitch-man, but Gideon–and this was in his teenage, pre-attorney days–said I would have more deniability without my mug on the thing. Uh huh.
To the best of my recollection, it looked a lot like this:
HE’S COME THROUGH FOR THE CLASSES OF ’76, ’77, ’78, ’79, AND
COME THROUGH FOR
Y O U !
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
THE FINE LAD/FINE LASS LETTER $50
THE VERY GOOD-SOUL LETTER $50
THE DETERMINED, UPRIGHT YOUTH LETTER $75
THE ALL-AROUND GOOD GUY/GAL LETTER $75
THE MORE-ATHLETE-THAN-SCHOLAR LETTER $100
THE COOPERATIVE CHILD LETTER $5
THE REBEL-WITH-A-HEART LETTER $125
THE REFORMED BULLY LETTER $150
THE COMMUNITY-MINDED BUT-NOT-A-LOT-ELSE-CHILD LETTER $200
THE YET-TO-BE-DISCOVERED-AS-HAVING-POTENTIAL-BUT S/HE-SURE-WILL ! LETTER $300
THE ONE-IN-TEN-THOUSAND-KID-AND-ALL-FOR-GREAT REASONS! LETTER $500
THE ONCE-IN-A-GENERATION-STUDENT LETTER $1,000
THE MOSES, ST. PAUL, BUDDHA LETTER $25,000
THE SECOND-COMING-OF- (fill-in-here) LETTER $100,000
cash: no cards, no checks
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