Dear John Nash,

YAbusamra.Ian.Ode to John Nashou have had many great achievements in your life, yet you did them with an obstacle: paranoid schizophrenia. You won the Nobel Prize in 1994 for game theory! I enjoyed researching the Nash equilibrium, which is when two players have no better option but to use exactly the same strategy that they were previously using. Another idea I researched was the Prisoner’s Dilemma. In this idea, the best option for two prisoners is to not confess, for neither will get punished. However, if an agreement in which neither side can cheat has not been made beforehand not to confess, the prisoner’s best option is to confess. The reason is that if one confesses but the other doesn’t, the person who confesses is better off. These theories have helped many people understand economics more deeply, especially me. That is the reason I am so interested in your life, and enjoy researching it.

I find it inspiring that you are so accomplished, even with an obstacle. You have shown us that if you put forth effort, anything is possible, even winning the Nobel Prize. Most people, at some time, feel that they have a terrible life, worse than that of anyone else in the world. You are one of a small fraction of people who do not behave this way. Some people would just give up and not try, but you persisted. In my English class, we are currently talking about people who overcame great obstacles to achieve great things. It seems as if all of the great people in history had some sort of obstacle they overcame. At least with you this is true. I also believe people are more respected if they have overcome great obstacles.

I haven’t even come close to understanding the complexities of your theories, even though I have almost no obstacles. Sometimes I think, “Bah, why do I have to do all of this homework?” Instead, I should think, “If I were John Nash, I would be doing all of this homework and more with a medical disorder.” A lot of us will never be as successful as you without any obstacle. I wonder if having a disorder or obstacle motivates you to achieve greatness. It sure seems that way.

On May 23, 2015, you and your wife were killed in a taxi. All of us regretted that moment, but I am sure your name will be remembered forever.

Your fan,
Ian Abusamra

When Ian Abusamra, Central Middle School, Anne Arundel County, is not producing work for My-Say, he enjoys riding his skateboard, playing with his hamsters and eating pizza.