Thursday, June 16, 2016

Story 139: Life Goal Misfire

            “Welcome, audience, to today’s episode of Where Did My Life Go Wrong?.  I am your host, Bob Emcee.  We have four guests on the panel today: let’s start with you, Jill Regret.”
            “Hi, Bob, thanks for having me.”
            “So what’s your saga, Jill?”
            “OK, I’m 35 years old, and I’m Store Manager at ----- ------.”
            “Well, Jill, it sounds like you did pretty well for yourself.”
            “It would sound that way, if I hadn’t gotten my master’s degree in engineering.”
            “Oh my.  What happened?”
           “What didn’t?  It’s a hard enough field for me to get into, as you can imagine, but with the recession, two school-age kids and a sick parent at home, plus no time to do internships, and my part-time job became my career to pay the bills.  Even if all that changed tomorrow, I’m too many years removed from my degree for it to count for me anymore.”
            “That’s a real kick in the teeth if I ever heard one.  Best of luck to you in your next life, and be sure to pick up your complimentary tea cozy on the way out today.  Our second guest is – let’s see – my goodness, it’s world-famous rock star Chad Musicman!  I didn’t realize you were scheduled for today – welcome, welcome.”
            “Thank you – it’s real good to be here.”
            “I apologize if I sound a bit obtuse, but are you certain that you’re on the right show?”
            “Heh heh, I’m certain all right.”
            “Very well.  Mr. Musicman: the fame, the fortune, the adoration, the music.  Where could it possibly have all gone wrong for you?”
            “Yeah, all that’s great, and I always have loved music, don’t get me wrong, but when I went to college, it was because I really really really wanted to be a litigator.”
            “Yes!  It’s absolutely fascinating, and I loved working summers in law firms, plus debate was my favorite extracurricular activity, even above band and chorus – ”
            “Yeah, but I just couldn’t remember a lot of the legal terms and I kept mixing up court cases, so I didn’t even make it to the entrance exams for law school.  Been bummed out about that ever since.”
            “That certainly explains your first #1 hit song, ‘Love the Law, It Don’t Love Me.’”
            “Oh yeah – it’s grammatically incorrect, but fit the meter better.”
           “Hm.  Our next guest is a top cardiothoracic surgeon who has saved countless lives, won countless awards, written countless articles that saved even more lives, and has a six-month waiting period for office appointments.  Dr. Jeanne Lifesaver, welcome to our show, now tell us why you think your life has gone so horribly awry and – ”
            “I HAVE NO FREE TIME!”
            “…Thank you for joining us – right, lads, don’t jostle her on that stretcher – our final guest is a self-described entrepreneur, but the entire world knows him by his moniker Villain McHorrible.  I won’t lie and say that this is honor, sir.”
            “The feeling is mutual.”
            “Now, Mr. McHorrible, let me be blunt: you have stolen trillions of all units of currency, you have disrupted cable service for civilians watching the game too many times to count, and you have caused traffic jams on major roadways worldwide that have lasted for days.  How can we believe you when you say that controlling humanity has not been your life goal after such overwhelming evidence to the contrary?”
            “I need justify my actions to no one.”
            “You chose to appear on live TV for that very reason!”
           “Oh yes.  True, I have done all those things you mentioned and I’m planning very soon to block access to all social media Web sites for an indeterminate length of time – ”
            “But you must understand, I did not choose this life.  It was thrust upon me, simply because I failed to succeed in the one thing that is my genuine, undying passion.”
            “Which is?”
           “The Dance.  Years of lessons, only to be told that I have no tempo and never will, what would you have done in my position?”
            “If we forced Julliard to accept you, would you leave the rest of the world alone?”
            “You know, I’m not sure – maybe?  No, it’s all I know now, I really don’t think the dice can be unrolled at this point, Bob.”
            “That does it for today.  Thank you all for joining us on Where Did My Life Go Wrong?.  See you at the same time tomorrow, unless I haven’t lost the gubernatorial election yet again.”