When I agreed to help the lovely girlfriend (now the lovely wife) through college, with the understanding that when she was done it was my turn, I never quite expected it to happen. It was one of those, “sure, I’ll put 5% of my income into a 401(k) because I’ll be old someday, whatever”, decisions, even though you can’t really picture yourself shuffling down the dogfood aisle with your Goodwill walker if you don’t. It just seemed like the right choice. Would you like to learn things, do something more fulfilling, get paid more? Of course. Easy. Now we’re fast approching the time where I might actually have to do this thing, and the doubts are kicking in.
Do I like to learn things? Well, sure, but I’m already fairly smart, if I get smarter, would I have to be all uppity? Also, I’m not great with deadlines. I have to feel like it. Sometimes I feel like reading art history, sometimes I study medicine, sometimes I try to learn what the best single malt scotch is in my price range. (I’m currently auditioning a bottle of Balvenie 12 Year Old Doublewood, and I recommend it. Hell, maybe I should go to Whisky School.)
Would I like to do something more fulfilling? Yes. There’s not much question here. What I do now doesn’t make the world any better. Not even incrementally. Nor does it really engage the mind. If I could make a living at one or the other or, g-d help me, both, well, that would be swell.
Would I like to make more money? Sure I would, but it’s not of primary importance, which means I probably never will. I’m fine with that. What I’m most worried about is the possibility of making much less money, at least while I’m in school.
So, let’s synthesize all this data, shall we? I would like something more fulfilling, but I’m afraid of making less money and I don’t want to learn on someone else’s schedule. Those sound like pretty weak excuses to sit on my ass for the next 40 years.
OK, so I should probably go to school. Now I just need a major. Any suggestions?