Me in a decade – still struggling

March 7, 2017 — by David Koh

Senior reflects on his life. 

At some point in every year of my life I’ve come face to face with the dreaded question — “What do you want to be when you grow up?” or “Where do you see yourself in (blank) years?”. Of course, my response was usually the obligatory “doctor” or “scientist.”

Regardless, I never understood why people ask children what they expect themselves to be. At least when I was in elementary school, I was too caught up in learning to tie my shoes to bother worrying about my future.

However, as I’ve experienced almost two years of high school and countless lectures about the importance of my future, I’ve realized that perhaps there is some value to aspiration.

In 10 years, I hope I will have achieved my dream of becoming a professional racecar driver. We can ignore the fact that while being well over 16 years old, I have yet to lay my hands on a steering wheel or my foot on a gas pedal.

In all seriousness, given my current levels of procrastination, I’ll probably end up being one of those people who will have an AAA business and call card in my wallet and a spare tank of gas in my trunk at all times. Unfortunately, a mindset of “I’ll fill it up at the next station” or “I can go a few more miles” will only leave me stranded on a highway, possibly a metaphor for everything else that may happen in my life.

But I’ve always dreamed of attending Gonzaga University in Washington after attending a debate camp there and discovering the joys of Red Bull smoothies. To my dismay, when I returned to Saratoga and asked my local Starbucks to put Red Bull in my drink, they asked me to leave. I do hope there comes a time in my life when Red bull smoothies become a walk away instead of several states away.

As to where I’ll be living after college, honestly, I would be happy with anything so long as I’m not living in my parents’ basement. I’ve watched all these movies and read all these books about grown men living in their parents’ basement amongst garbage, McDonald’s recruitment fliers and rejection letters from colleges, but it never really occurred to me that depending on how I performed or what I did during high school I could easily end up jobless, hopeless and stuck with a Gameboy as my best friend for the rest of my life. Needless to say, as scary as the prospect of living in my parents’ basement is for me, it’s no doubt scarier for them.  

Then there’s the other path, assuming I scrape through college and find myself ready to face the world with an enormous student debt on my shoulders and college diploma in hand.

Naturally, while most other college graduates’ first move might be to go get a drink and party to celebrate the end of their schooling days, I’ve always been a stay-at-home re-watching TV series with a bag of popcorn and Toblerone type of guy. Somehow watching “The Suite Life of Zack and Cody” is more enjoyable than a night of partying could ever be.

After getting over the euphoria of graduating I will probably go find a job and activate thrift-mode. My third-grade teacher once told me that the years after college were years in which nickels on the street were like jackpots. During this time, I’ll become an expert in couponing and have an ear tuned to the sound of dropping coins. Of course, there will be the trips to Chipotle where my bag will be filled with more napkins than food.

While all of these aspects of my life may change, I expect that most of my tendencies and habit will stay the same — things like craving junk food in the middle of the night or pulling on push doors. Although I may enter a whole new world of adulthood and responsibility in a decade, I’ll still struggle with simple things.

2 views this week