Each question has four components: the person asking, the person being asked, the relationship between them, and the motivation behind the question. For example, a young man hears, “Why are you getting married?”
When his best friend brings it up, the question might be that he’s making a mistake because there are “too many women and too little time.” This same question might be coming from a broken heart when it is the little brother who sees his older brother, his best friend, and gives up on him and all the fun they had playing ball and video games.
It would mean something else entirely when it came from his father who wished he had stayed celibate but “had” to get married after a night in the backseat of a Ford in ’64. The question might be the expression of dread and great sadness when it comes from his mother who had always dreamed of her son becoming a priest.
the motivation It is everything, the truth of it, and especially Imagine From it, a perception that can be completely accurate or false. Suffice it to say, you cannot answer a question truthfully or honestly unless you understand both the question and the motive behind it. If you misunderstand one of them, your answer may be honest, honest, and truthful, but it will still be wrong. You might, for example, ask me, “Are you Randy?” Unless I don’t know if you’re asking me if that’s my name (capital “R”) or if I’m sexually aroused (lowercase “r”) And Why you ask, any answer I give can be true or false, true or misleading.
I asked a third-grade question that foreshadowed what became, for lack of a better word, my destiny. The teacher asked why the woman’s name was changed, and not the man’s, when they got married. The class erupted into laughter. I felt embarrassed and humiliated. The teacher was great. She said, “Randy, I honestly don’t know. All I know is that it’s an imitation.”
This question and the short segment of dialogue cemented my relationship forever with authority figures and my peers. Up until this point I respect the character’s honesty, no condescending or condescending tones or words. For example, she (the teacher) could have said, “Randy, you’re too young to understand.” you did not.
As for my colleagues, I have spent many years thinking about this seemingly harmless event. I have a name for their laughter because I’ve seen it in action over and over again. It’s smug laughter for those who know the answer and can’t believe anyone else could be so stupid that they didn’t know that either. But it’s also the nervous laughter for both those too shy to ask the question and those who haven’t thought of it for themselves in the first place. Their laughter is the desire to fit in, to belong with the rest, and not be seen as “different”.
I call this The crazy laughter of the damned. They are “damned” because they will most likely spend the rest of their lives putting more effort into trying to fit in than searching for meaning and truth. I know this because the other children stopped laughing as soon as the teacher answered my question. I know this because I see adults repeating it over and over in every conceivable setting.
Yes, every child goes through this. But by adulthood, most of them chose to remain silent and not ask questions. It is as if asking questions immediately translates into outright defiance and insubordination. Perhaps this is why most people prefer to follow the path of obedience because it really becomes the path of least resistance. But whether that was real and intended, or a perception that could be accurate or false, motivation It is what can bring conflict into something as simple as asking a question.
Long ago I knew a man who told me that he shot groundhogs for digging holes and that farmers’ cows would step into holes and break their legs. “Do you fill in the holes after you kill the groundhog?” I asked. he said no”. I said, “Well, what’s the point of killing a groundhog if you’re not going to fill the hole?” We didn’t talk much after that because he correctly understood the motive for my question, the unspoken “That’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard.”
So what is the motive behind asking every young man in this country, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” This question falls under the category of “you know what I mean” simply because what is being asked is what kind of occupation, job, job or profession one is considering in order to earn a salary or make money.
But “work” is not the same as “work” any more than “earning a salary” is the same as “earning money”. “Work” includes not only the work and employment required to make money, but also – and much more importantly – the “work” of everyday life, trying to understand, and perhaps even resolve, the struggles and complexities we all face on a daily basis.
So while asking someone “what do you want to be when you grow up” may have the best of intentions with them, with rare exceptions it is an exercise in futility. And in the darkness of this nation’s focus on money and materialism, I will not argue with the need for young people to look seriously at these matters. Not doing it, not having a clear vision, not choosing anything by default leads to someone like me, a guy with about sixty employers in the past. With no privacy in mind, one goes where one can find a suitable job. Sometimes it helps if such jobs actually become material for careers and careers that will last a lifetime. But when it doesn’t, the option is by default just to have a “job,” or more than one, possibly dozens.
However, there is a double edged sword present in this question. Encouraging young people to decide what they want to be when they grow up is to ask and expect them to first choose a career, then choose the college that best prepares them for that career, and then invest all those years, all that energy, all that money so that they can, for the rest of their livesDay after day, do the same “work” over and over again.
Now maybe I get bored easily or need new challenges from time to time, but I can think of a few jobs, a few careers, and a few anything Which I would like to devote the rest of my life to achieving for the sake of money and material gain. I will make a comparison.
Your son or daughter tells you that he is getting married. He’s barely twenty years old and you insist he’s too young to make such decisions. Try with all your might to make him think in terms of rest of his life in order to dissuade him. But when it comes to money? Oh, then We encourage them to make this commitment and trust them to be “mature” enough to make such decisions. It’s crazy. It’s crap.
What do you want to be when you grow up?
If a six-year-old girl asked this question, she might say something like a ballerina. At 10 years old she will want to be a puppy doctor. At fourteen, a nurse. The boy will say a cowboy, then a firefighter, then a secret agent. I’m applying stereotypes from the ’50s, but the point is clear.
Why then is everyone so convinced that a young man or woman in their late teens or early twenties has a real vision and understanding of what they want to do with it? rest of their lives What did they do just a decade ago? Don’t you know that boredom at work is just as likely as boredom in marriage and that initial “true love” with a particular career will eventually prove to be just “puppy love”? Birthing lifelong careers based on juxtaposing young people’s notions of ideal careers and financial security is still a shotgun wedding. The chances of passion and romance on the road are very slim.
And no, I don’t forget to insist on “do what you love and the money will follow.” Yes, it would be great if everyone could have the luxury of knowing what this elusive thing was that they wanted to dedicate the rest of their lives to making money with, in addition to having the means to make that dream come true. that it no The truth of the situation and if you say otherwise, you are either lying (to me, yourself, or anyone else) or selling something, or both.
What do you want to be when you grow up?
The worst consequence of this question is that you have succeeded in creating people who define themselves through the work they do to make money. “I I be doctor ” I be truck driver. “Both of them are incorrect. Like it or not, I understand the ‘American plug-in’ thing. But to define yourself in terms of what you do just to make money? If suicide is killing your body, I wonder what they call killing your sense of identity?”
The essence of a man or woman cannot be found in what they do to make money. But isn’t that exactly what “human resources” has accomplished? The essence of man has been reduced to nothing more than his usefulness in the pursuit of commerce, consumption, profit and greed.
And that It becomes the motivation of “what do you want to be when you grow up?” You have to put your faith, trust, and energies into the institutions (colleges, universities, employers) and philosophies (Capitalism, “Business 101”) that need to be followed in this pursuit of financial security. In return you are dehumanized and turned into a “human resource”.
You are nothing more than a necessary expense required for a company to stay in business and turn a profit. And if the company can find a way to replace you with a piece of machinery or a furry yard animal, it will do so without blinking an eye. It is true that you are a “human” resource, but your humanity is second only to your role as a resource.
If “growing” means becoming a willing part of the that System, I’m happy to say that up until this very moment I have no idea what I want to be when I grow up. Getting older is inevitable, but from what I’ve noticed, “growing up” usually means “letting go” of your dreams and visions, and your very own personality. And what is this other than “making a deal with the devil”?