I’ve been thinking a lot lately about a conversation I had four years ago. I was on a first date with a woman I didn’t know very well. She was 27 and I was 21 so you can imagine our perspectives on life were a bit different. The conversation eventually shifted towards goals and aspirations, as most of my alcohol fueled talks do, and we quickly realized how far apart our expectations were. I had just moved to Chicago, optimistic and determined to succeed in comedy, acting, writing, and all sorts of lofty career paths. I remember her reaction very vividly. She had a combination of pity and amusement splashed across her face. I was told that “I sounded so young”.
I dismissed her comment and obviously things didn’t really work out between the two of us. But as I grow older, and my perspective gradually and subtly changes, I tend to think back on that moment more and more. I don’t think I have the same goals that I did four years ago, and I know that I definitely want different things out of life. But that I’ve begun to use that conversation as an anchor. An anchor to my state a mind before life started to get complicated. I guess what I’m trying to say is: it’s a shame that most of use lose that fire. I think it’s important that we keep fanning that flame and keep it burning inside of us. That fire is what pushes us. It keeps us moving forward. It keeps us hungry.
Stagnancy is the death of progress, and progress is what makes life worth living. We live and we learn and we grow. Life is too short to stay complacent, and way too short to worry about “sounding young”. I used to think I didn’t want to end up settling for a “normal life”, but the older I get the more I realize there is no normal life. There is just life.
We’re all living our own unique experience. Our own personal story. So I think we owe it to ourselves to make it an interesting one. It’s not always easy or enjoyable, but we don’t read Macbeth because it’s a happy story. We read it because it’s a great one. So I’m going to keep the fire burning. I’m going to stay hungry, and not get complacent. I’m going to try my hardest to stay optimistic and determined. Because there’s nothing worse than a boring story.