Lifeguarding fit neatly between spring and fall semesters at the university. Arnie was a natural and took his work seriously. It was a typical day at the beach. He was watching children build sandcastles while enjoying conversation with cute bikini-clad babes. Everything was perfect.
Suddenly he heard people shouting. He looked toward the water and saw a man waving his arms as a wave came crashing down on him. The man disappeared. Arnie started swimming toward him. With his arm around the man's neck he swam to shore. A circle of horrified people surrounded him. CPR was unsuccessful. It was too late. In those few minutes the word responsibility had taken on new meaning. One man was dead and another's life had changed forever as a result.
Twenty years later, Arnie was sitting at the desk in his study grading essays. Final exams were over and he was writing comments and critiques on each page. His son, Joseph, was finishing his second year of college. It was time to consider his options for summer jobs. He was athletic and had been a member of the swimming team since high school. He needed some advice so he went into the study.
"Dad, I'm thinking about what I should do this summer to earn some money. Any suggestions?" Joseph asked.
Arnie's reply was simple. "Mow lawns, son. Mow lawns."