Palo Alto Weekly 18th Annual Short Story
Child Second Place
Life Goes On
by Charlie Lin
| About Charlie Lin
Lin often plays basketball with his father or wrestles
with his brother. When Lin began brainstorming ideas for
writing a short story he decided to draw from his own experiences.
"My dad always says he wants to play basketball with
my children, but my mom is always joking that he is going
to be too old by the time my children are old enough to
play," said 10-year-old Lin.
His mother's light-hearted joke got Charlie wondering
about children and what happens when they realize their
parents are growing older. He started jotting down his
thoughts in the form of the story, "Life Goes On."
"I came to this kid who really likes to wrestle with
his dad and then his dad grew older and he couldn't put
up with his son's strength. I thought his son might realize
it and he might become kind of sad," said Lin, a sixth-grader
at JLS Middle School.
"Life Goes On" explores the relationship between a father and his son
through the pair's favorite playtime activity: Wrestling. The short story follows
the father-son team as the son matures.
Lin has written essays before about other sports such
as basketball and hockey.
But he has never written a short story.
He was pleasantly surprised to find that his first attempt
to write a short fiction story had won him second place
in the contest. Lin said the experience has given him more
confidence and a desire to do more writing.
Come here Mikey!" called Mike's dad. "Do you want to
watch TV with me?"
"Yes! Yes!" said Mike. "What are we going
"Wrestling," said Mike's dad.
"What's wrestling?" asked Mikey.
"Come and see for yourself!"
"Do you want ice cream, too?"
"OK!" said Mike even louder than before, for ice cream
was his favorite food.
Although he didn't really know what wrestling
was, he knew that
he was about to enjoy some time with his dad, with ice cream.
His mom gave Mike two bowls of ice cream, and he carefully carried
the bowls to his dad in the living room. He gave his dad a bowl,
and they watched
wrestling together. When the show was over, Mike tackled his dad, like
he had just
seen on TV. His dad tackled him back. When their mom went to check
on them, she
found them playing and rolling around on the ground. As she walked
away, smiling, she
heard her husband yelling
"1..2..3..4..5..6..7.8..9..10! I won!". Then
she heard Mike. "Can we play again daddy? Please?" And
that was how it all got started.
Every day from then on, Mike wrestled with his dad. His dad would
always win, and they would always have fun. Soon, the boy went
but the boy still
wrestled with his dad at least twice a day. Once before he went
to school and his dad left for work, and once when his dad got
Mike was a
nice boy, so he made lots of friends at school. They also all loved
Also, whenever a friend asked him to play, he would say, "Hang on. Let me
finish wrestling with my dad!" Mike loved wrestling with his
dad so much, his mom bought him a blow-up mini wrestling ring with
it. Mike loved it so much that he used it to wrestle with his dad
every day. Mike always looked forward to weekends, which meant
lots of wrestling.
they would often watch wrestling on TV, and now and then Mike would
learn some new tackle or move, and each day Mike got better and
Mike got better,
his dad put more effort into wrestling with Mike.
One day, when Mike was seventeen, his dad wrestled with Mike just
like he would wrestle with a professional. He even had to stop
and catch his breath once in
a while. He was proud of his strong, tall, brave, grown-up, nice,
and kind- hearted son.
One year later, Mike was eighteen, and had grown pretty big and
strong. When the weekend came, Mike had his usual wrestling tournament
his dad. To his
surprise, his dad struggled with him, and Mike actually pinned
him down and successfully held him down. He was very happy, but
he realized that his dad was getting
weaker, and he was a grown-up now.
He thought about the fact for a minute or two, then sadly went
up to his room and softly cried into his pillow.