What do you want to be when you grow up?

I was emailing my teenage niece tonight and I asked her this:

If you could be any career without thinking about the salary or talent or education needed or anything like that – ie no obstacles – what would you be?

It got me thinking.  Then I thought some more.  And I realized that I wasn’t sure I could even answer that question for myself.  At least I didn’t have an immediate answer.  I’m sure there are many of you out there who don’t have an immediate answer either.

So that is your project.  Take a few minutes out of your day today and think about what you truly want to be.  Don’t give me the practical answer – you know, the career that you want to be because it will make you enough money or because that is what you know you can get a job in.  Give me your inner child’s answer.  That’s right, pretend you are 7.  Like back in the days when all kids wanted to be firemen, astronauts, models, actors and rock stars.  And don’t give me your parent’s answer either (I can’t tell you how many Korean children have told me they want to be lawyers and diplomats when they don’t even know what lawyers and diplomats do).  Give me YOUR answer.  Like the question above says, don’t think about talent or degrees, just what you would do if you had the choice.

To be fair, I will give you my answer to get things going.  I would be…well, a couple things actually.  Here they are in all their random glory:

If I'm going to be a librarian, you bet I'd be a hot one!

  • Librarian.  Odd right?  But I love books.  Not just reading them.  I love to see them lined up and organized all pretty.  Really old books and really new books are especially smile-worthy.  Why am I not a library you ask?  Because it requires a master’s degree and then the salaries are not worthy of the debt that the master’s degree would put me further into.


I want to learn how to make this perfect combo of caffeine and art.

  • Barista.  No, I don’t have a love of coffee or a desire to work with scalding liquids all day at a fast pace (which opens the imagination to visualize all kinds of dangerous spillage).  I just love the feel of a coffee shop, especially the non-franchisey ones.  The ones with the Goodwill couches, Thursday night local guitarist and no uniforms.  And I love the idea of a non-professional job where I can be my goofy self all day.  I’d get to listen to mood music all day and people watch during the non-rush hour.  Once I get out of debt, this is part of my plan.  Don’t cha just love it?  😉


  • Writer.  Can’t decide what kind of writer.  Novelist.  Travel writer.  Magazine writer.  Any of the above would be great.  And this is something I’m currently working on.  Being a language learner, I am very passionate about words and using them as a form of expression.  And I am a big advocate of sharing information.  I like the idea that it can be part-time or full-time and I can write from anywhere in the world thanks to the inventors of the computer and the internet.  Fingers crossed this one pans out.


Great shot of Keira Knightley from the movie the Edge of Love

  • Lounge singer.  I have no desire to be a big pop star or anything like (despite my 7 year old aspirations to be Debbie Gibson or Tiffany).  I don’t think my paranoid side would deal well with the fame and being in the public eye.  I want to be the woman at a dark, sophisticated piano bar with the sultry voice singing Diana Krall songs like Peel Me a Grape, Temptation and Cry Me a River.  (Those who have heard me at noraebang, stop snickering…I do much better with real music, less beer and no cheesy video distractions.  HA!  😀 ).  I’m Jessica Rabbit biotches.  Accept it.

When I was 7 I wanted to be a teacher and a dancer.  Without even realizing it, I ended up becoming both.  So I truly believe that if you tap into what you truly want and where you truly want to go in life, your raw passion for it will make sure you get there.