If I had a dime for every time my buddy slept through classes, well… I wouldn’t be any richer because he would steal it all for beer money anyway.
They say we live in a new world where the future is shaky at best. The economy is collapsing and should be completely wrecked right in time for college graduates to find a job. But jobs are falling away faster than parties get busted at CMU. Yes, we live in scary, restless times, but you wouldn’t know it by looking at a lot of college students.
Before I go any further, let me say I’m not against having a good time, I’m far from the perfect student and I can’t take a test to save my life. But I work hard. I take what I have and try to make more. Nine times out of 10 I’m left with nothing. But at least I try.
The other day, I asked my buddy why he even goes to school.
“Is there a point in paying $20,000 a year to flunk out?” I asked. “Shouldn’t you at least plant your ass in a lecture once a week to trick yourself into thinking you’re getting your money’s worth? So, by the time all your friends are graduating, you’ll pretty much have payed $100,000 for 4 years of crappy food, then?”
“Honestly, I don’t really care,” he replied. “My parents pay for it all. It’s their fault if they keep paying for me to fail.”
“I hope you think about that when you’re 40 and homeless, begging on the corner,” I said.
But I didn’t actually say that. I’m too nice to tell the truth. And my buddy’s a lot bigger than I am.
My parents make a living through honest, hard work. My grandparents made a living through honest, hard work, probably because their parents did likewise, as well as their parents and so forth. Who am I to end the streak?
Just because I’m lucky enough to attend a university and able to afford a computer doesn’t mean I have the luxury of laziness. The second I fail is the second I try again. The second I stop trying is the second I become a failure. (That was my attempt at sounding philosophical. I’m 90% sure I stole that quote from someone.)
So if our parents have to work hard to stay afloat, and the future is as unstable as ever, doesn’t that mean we better work our asses off?
Try explaining that to my buddy. Years of “taking a day off” are catching up to him, and it’s hard for him to wrap his mind around things.
But while I’m hitting the books and aspiring to write for a living, he’ll be passed out some where, going nowhere.
I’ll graduate, realize a journalist no longer has a future and probably make a tough living from paycheck to paycheck.
My buddy will be living off of his parents somewhere, in a nice room in a nice house with a whole lot of free time.
But at least I will have worked for what I have.
And that’s success.
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