"When we were five, they asked us what we wanted to be when we grew up. Our answers were things like astronaut, president, or in my case… princess.
When we were ten, they asked again and we answered - rock star, cowboy, or in my case, gold medalist. But now that we've grown up, they want a serious answer. Well, how about this: who the hell knows?!
This isn't the time to make hard and fast decisions, it's time to make mistakes. Take the wrong train and get stuck somewhere chill. Fall in love - a lot. Major in philosophy because there's no way to make a career out of that. Change your mind. Then change it again, because nothing is permanent.
So make as many mistakes as you can. That way, someday, when they ask again what we want to be… we won't have to guess. We'll know."
My hero gold medal princess.
When I was in high school I wanted to be a marine biologist. I wanted to work with the fucking kick ass dolphins at Sea World. I even did a senior research project on the symbiotic relationship between the sea anemone and the clown fish. Thrilling stuff I tell you. This seems weird to me now because I'm deathly afraid of the water. And isn't that the whole point of marine biology?
Somewhere along the way I realized sitting in a fucking four hour lab on a Friday afternoon when all my friends had already started drinking, was not my cup of tea (or shot of whiskey, which makes more sense in this case.) So I changed majors. I have a degree in English. That's sort of like Biology, right?
So now I work in advertising... which I've mentioned before and I'm sure you're quite sick of hearing about. Why am I telling you this again? Probably because I realized that once I got over the fact that I would not be the next Jacques Cousteau, I never had any desire to actually be something when I grew up.
Just the mere thought of scuba equipment makes me claustrophobic.
Frankly, I didn't want to grow up. For me, coming to an office every day where I don't have to dress up and I'm not limited by the confines of punching a time clock or having a supervisor peering over my shoulder all day was the perfect place for me. It must be... I'll be celebrating 15 years here next month. Maybe it's because I'm not in a cubicle farm. I have my own office that I can decorate as I please. Right now it's a blank slate because we just renovated but I have a stack of television show posters waiting to be plastered on the walls.
I'm 41 and I'm not sure I could ever be hired at some sort of corporate-type job. Advertising has made me virtually un-hireable. I would be immediately fired from any job other than my current one. There aren't many companies where you can bellow out a string of curse words that would make George Carlin blush and not be fired, but commended for your creativity. Or bosses that will threaten termination if you refuse to get drunk with them. No seriously, it happens. I actually got so shitfaced and high with my boss one night, I could barely find my way home. And I was right around the corner from my apartment.
RIP George... you made swearing fun.
I know that I will never again work for a company where I'm actually encouraged to call my boss a douchebag. My special ringtone for him is a sing-songy tune that says, "Douchebag, douchebag calling... douchebag...etc." He thinks it's hysterical and will often (inappropriately) tell new clients about it. That, and the fact that I enjoy firearms. Not something you want a brand new client to know. It scares them.
Yeah... I haven't grown up and I don't ever plan to. I truly hope this agency stays in business long enough for me to retire from it. (Even though at times I want to burn it to the ground and kill everyone here firing squad style, I mostly don't dread coming to work.)
I want to hear from you guys in the comments... are you doing now what you said you'd be doing as a senior in high school? As a senior in college? Did you set out to go to medical school and you're now a teacher? Or did you actually become a doctor? Does your job make you feel like a grown up? If so, what does that feel like? Inquiring minds want to know!