essays / Ben Franklin – The Worth of Risky Adventures

In my life, I have come across many opportunities and challenges that have resulted in great successes and failures. Without taking risks, I could not have experienced and accomplished as much as I did taking risks. Two primary risks I took in my earlier years: writing disguised letters to my brother’s newspaper and leaving Boston for a new life in Pennsylvania.

I pursued learning and schooling from a young age. I enjoyed reading, but was enthralled by writing. I became a newspaper apprentice of the New England Courant. My initial attempts to publish my articles were rejected, therefore, I worked overtime to improve my writing. With my earnings, I borrowed books from a local bookseller, reading everything possible. I improved my style of writing by imitating the style of quality literature. Risking my apprenticeship and fulfilling my desire to write, I wrote articles to the newspaper under the pen name of Silence Dogood. Ms. Dogood was portrayed as a virtuous and humble lady, with many realistic conclusions and a clever sense of humor. I developed my satire and imbued humor while depicting her character. The newspaper published a political column that offended the governess, for this, the publisher was imprisoned. During his imprisonment, I ran the paper for a short period of time. In taking the risk to publishing the letters of Mrs. Dogood, I improved my writing, became politically involved, and managed a paper.

I left the New England Courage to advance my career in printing, however, my current employer ensured all the prints in Boston would not employ me. Therefore, I resolved to go to New York to find a job. Taking my first risk led to me taking on even a greater risk to advance my interests and career. Leaving Boston involved many risks and hardships: no family, no money, no support, and no friends. However, I still was skilled at writing and printing. I went a printer in New York, William Bradford, who offered that I may be able to help his son. After a long journey, I reached Philadelphia. In the long, distracted, and dangerous journey in the stormy sea. During the journey, my ship was tossed by the wind and the waves. Halfway through the voyage, I saved a drunken Dutchman in the cold, violent ocean. Upon my arrival, I encountered yet another setback. Andrew Bradford, William Bradford’s son, did not need an assistant. Taking risks does yield adventures, but is not always beneficial. After searching at length, I eventually found work as assistant at a small printing shop. I made friends with many young people in Philadelphia who enjoyed reading and intellectual pursuits, discussing philosophy, politics, and literature at length with them. I still continued my pursuits of reading, writing and scholarly interests.

At that time, Governor Keith of Philadelphia became interested in my skill and good work. He wrote me a recommendation, assisting me in going to Boston to attain the permission of my father in an attempt to start a printing business. Governor Keith assured me that a new printing shop had a large chance of success. My appearance in Boston surprised my family, but my father flatly turned down the Governor’s proposition. Since then, it was necessary for me to find or make employment for myself. I left to London to learn new printing skills so I could carrying out Governor Keith’s idea to found a printing shop. Upon arriving in London, I found I had been deceived by Governor Keith, who actually written his promised letter of recommendation. Trusting Governor Keith would be my second errata, but I used the error to my advantage by working at Palmer’s, a famous printing house in London. I enjoyed London and swam there to diversifying my skills. I also worked hard printing in London, but I also read and wrote to much abundance, attempting to improve my skills. Overall, my trip to London was worth the risk and initial struggle. The trip improved my exposure to reading and learned individuals and increased my maturity and printing skills. After returning to Philadelphia, I eventually worked at Keimer’s printing house. Shortly thereafter, he became bankrupt, giving me an opportunity to take over his business. I seized the opportunity, I took over the shop and used my printing supples from London. Since then, the printing shop has grown and become profitable. In the end, I benefited from taking the large risks of traveling to London and leaving Boston.

Being laborious, virtuous, and determined have paid off greatly. Taking risks also have provided beneficial to me, whether they turned out at the time to be disadvantageous or advantageous. For instance, had I not left Boston, I would have neither have the chance to own a printing shop, nor the ability to find and benefit from opportunities in London and Philadelphia.

Recently, I have been held back by the lack of formal learning and time. With the money I gained from the new printing establishment, I plan to return to learning. My learning has been stifled by the distractions of the printing business and politics. Now, I have the chance to go to a university to expand my mind and provide the opportunity to study and learn with learned scholars and students. Since I had been working hard for most of my life, I missed the focus on learning I had in my younger years. Now I have the opportunity and the time necessary to achieve a greater skill set through learning. Through unyielding labor and living virtuously, I have the opportunity to learn. My mistakes and successes have been made possible through taking risks, either turning out as erratas or beneficial risks, that have brought me to this point in my life. I wish to study the sciences, a longtime interest, writing, and philosophy at a university.