But for me — and I dare say — for many other American Baby Boomers (ABBs), 2013 can be realistically considered a Leap Year. And I’ll explain why. But first a very short story.
I’m miserable. End of story. See? I told you it was short.
Oh, the family is great. The kids are productively doing their respective things — employed, paying their own rent, feeding themselves, and becoming actual adults (or something close to it). Our family health is good. My wife still loves me (last I heard). We live in a fabulous community outside of history-drenched, culture-filled and sports-crazed Boston. We have wonderful friends. My personal life could not possibly be better. Honest to God.
Professionally? That’s another story. I’m a commercial copywriter who, like my peers, just craves a creative challenge. It’s a curse, but – as curses go – not such a bad one. Absolutely nothing feels better than giving birth to a solid marketing strategy and kick-ass creative concept. Oh, to witness a creative brainchild bedazzle an appreciative client and make the client’s audience swoon with unbridled lust! (Hey, it could happen.)
Problem is, in this fakakta economy, the opportunities for selling the “big idea” in marketing or advertising are getting fewer and farther between. (Unless you’re working for Apple or Google.) People and businesses still want to market, but almost without exception they’re moaning about their impossibly small budgets. If it weren’t so prevalent and common a complaint, it’d be funny. Almost.
So, after several long years of being a copywriter in an environment where creative assignments had all but dried up, I’ve decided to — here it comes — take “the Leap.”
Like many others, I’ve set off in search of the Holy Grail of Creative Greatness. In 2013, I will have officially launched Bob’s Creative — slogan “Affordable Marketing for Future Millionaires” or “Let’s Make This Write” or “To Infinitive and Beyond!” (Hey, it’s a work in progress.)
I may be taking a leap into the proverbial void, but at least I wasn’t pushed. It’s my choice. It beats stagnancy. It beats boredom. It beats doing nothing and waiting for forces out of my control to decide my fate. Granted, “control” is a slippery and debatable concept, but you get what I mean.
So leap I must, head first, into the dark, frightening, soul-testing unknown. (Pretty dramatic, huh?) But it won’t be boring.
I venture to guess that I’ll have company, i.e., other ABBs making a similar Leap. Hey, how about we get together some time? Grab a coffee. Help each other out however we can. We can reflect on the poor souls still stuck in their own professional misery. Sure they’re getting a paycheck, but we’ll be glad we’re not them. Right?!
So, here’s wishing one and all a prosperous, healthy, and happy Leap Year! Catch you in that big dark abyss. I’ll bring the salsa ‘n chips!