He got me thinking about two teachers from my high school, one an English teacher, and the other a Psychology teacher (and wrestling coach).
My English teacher, Mr. Estell, was the first person to ever pull me aside and tell me I had a "gift" (that was his word) for writing. Until then, I knew I liked to write, even sensed that I was talented, or skilled in that area. But it was Mr. Estell who helped me to see talent or skill for what it really is: gift.
Then later, in my senior year, Mr. Estell also spoke a huge word of encouragement to me. The context was a speech each of us had to give to summarize a term paper we’d written.
We each had ten minutes to do our speech. Mr. Estell had our index cards and outline in front of him, and as each one of us spoke,…