When I Grow Up

When I wanted to grow up, I wanted to be a Fireman. When I wanted to be a Fireman, no one called them Firefighters. The day our apartment burned, that little boy was thrilled to see the fire truck. When Alan Shepard flew into space on top of a rocket, (a rocket that may have exploded at any time), I forgot all about wanting to be a fireman. I wanted to be an astronaut, when I grew up. It took the better part of two decades to let that one go... assuming I've let go entirely. In 1964, I wanted to be a Rock Star, (while waiting to be selected for the astronaut corps). In 1982, I became half of a two person advertizing agency in Detroit. I'd become an ad man. To make time for creative work, I'd adapted software to automate the media purchasing budgets. This attracted enough attention that I was drawn into managing software projects for a large automobile corporation. When I was a project manager, I wanted to be a software developer, and by 1991, I was writing code for a large software services corporation. In 1999, I wanted to work in a start-up and become a wind surfer, and joined the first of several start-ups. Ironically, the trajectory of most start-ups is very similar to the ballistic arc flown by Alan Shepard, all those years ago. But when start-ups blow apart and disintegrate, no one remembers you as a hero. But somehow, you dust yourself off and volunteer for the next ride into the unknown. In 2013, I began teaching myself to play a guitar. If I one of these start-ups launches me into a career as a philanthropist, I'd like part of my public relations campaign to include a trip into space. I'm about as grown-up as I'm likely to get, now. But I haven't given up on what I want to be. I still admire firefighters.