So on my walk home from work I pass by a local bar. The other day I saw one of my friends was bartending and the bar was pretty empty so I decided to stop in for a quick beer and say hi. After a few minutes an older gentlemen came in and sat down next to me and started to chat. I am usually not really into talking to strangers but I was in a open mood. As sports was on the TV we were chatting about them and the conversation came to concussions and Amercian Football and how the players are suing the NFL and the implications of this situation. Are they being paid "X" Dollars(which is way more than your average person) to receive concussions. Is it their job? Are Amercian Football players just entertainers and their job is to hurt and be hurt like Ultimate Fighting? (I know there are college kids who are paying the price of injury without any recompense but lets leave that out of this discussion for now)
We then started talking about if us or someone would turn down hundreds of thousands of dollars if they were told they would receive a few concussions. Sadly, in this world money buys us so much. Not just comfortability but opportunities. The question came to would him or I give up a leg for $1 million. I told him it was a very difficult question for me because $1 million would allow me to pursue my dream of being able to do research and engineering on my own. It would basically fulfill my dream. I don't need a leg to do science or engineering. I have invested so much in my mind. He was a little abashed by my response even though I tried to explain it wasn't out of greed. It was a tough question for me.
Afterward I started thinking about what I would actually give up for my goals and to accomplish the things I want. It sucks that people give up their dreams and passions. It sucks that people don't have something in their life that they would give up a leg for. Or maybe I am just really naive that I would consider it.
I learned long ago that we can't accomplish everything we want in the world. The whole keep your dreams alive is fake and stupid. But with effort and perseverance we can create beautiful things or do beautiful things. Maybe not what we were dreaming of but still beautiful and moving.
If someone told me I would have to give up my leg or I couldn't do science or engineering ever again. I wouldn't even hesitate.