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Wednesday, March 29, 2006

My Fantasy of Going Back To College

It happens maybe once or twice a year, and it happened today.

I went to eat lunch at the Lodge (my new favorite place to eat in town... the college cafeteria). I invited Becky, the Assistant Director, to come so we could talk business over lunch. She agreed and we went only to find out that because it was spring break on campus, the normally luscious spread of food was replaced by a skimpy "brunch" menu. Becky quickly sized it up and left. I made the journey back to the office with her and upon her leaving for home, I grabbed a few things to read and headed back up. Sorry Becky - I know you didn't think it looked that good, but I ate until I was full.

On the way out of the cafeteria it happened. That strange isolated moment of pure fantasy where my imagination began to run wild about the joys of being back in college. I've had it happen about all kinds of things. Some strange, some odd and some just a little disturbing. Like the time I was parked at a stoplight, listening to the radio and the theme from Smokey and the Bandit came on while I was behind a semi truck and facing east into the sunrise. For a brief time I wanted to be a truck driver. "We've got a long way to go and a short time to get there..."

Today the warm smell of pine and the fresh air combined with the beautiful scenery (pictured above) and perhaps the thought of being the alternative culture made me want to go back to college, skip class and play Frisbee golf.

As I made it back to the office for the second time, I was faced with the reality that fantasies can be fun to think about as long as you don't ever follow them. Frisbee golf is one thing, writing term papers and final exams is quite another.

In an industry filled with people following their dreams/fantasies, I offer a few ways to evaluate following your fantasy. Ask youself the following:
  1. What will the cost of following my fantasy be?
  2. Am I willing to pay that price?
  3. What will I lose if I don't pay that price?
  4. In addition to finacial payment, what other forms of payment will I incur? (i.e. family, stress, health)
  5. Is my fantasy today going to be replaced by another tomorrow or will I hold onto it for years to come?
  6. What kind of support do you have for your fantasy? Does your spouse / friends think your nuts to follow it, or nuts not to follow it?
  7. What regrets might you have for not following your fantasy?
  8. Can you live with those regrets?
So, should you follow your fantasy?