Saturday, June 2, 2012
Forgetting Travis Bickle
But as it turns out, my drive into Manhattan from New Jersey was fairly uneventful. I got to drive over the George Washington Bridge, and I only got honked at by one person (a cab driver who thought I should have run over a pedestrian rather than yield). And I found free parking right in front of my friend's apartment building, where I'm staying.
Today, as I wandered the city, I wondered why I didn't listen to the fearful voices that told me to just take cabs everywhere (which would have cost me a lot more money).
I think it's because ever since I quit law, I'm just not as fearful of life in general. Over two years ago, when I discussed the possibility of quitting my attorney job with friends, many of them told me I would never be able to return to law, and that I could never make the same money I did as a practicing attorney. Quitting law would render me regretful, desperate, and penniless, in that exact order. But as it turns out, I quit the law and the world kept spinning. I found other jobs, I now make more money, and I am actually making financial progress. I lived through it.
Most of the time, I think fear is a silly waste of time. I politely listened to other people's worries about driving in New York, but in my mind, I thought, "Come on, millions of people have driven in New York. Do they all possess super powers or something? How hard can it be?” The same goes for career change. Millions of people work in the non-legal field and many of them seem to be doing quite well. If they can get by as non-attorneys, so can I. So can you, if you want.
The picture is from a street fair I went to today. Notice the guy in the wheelchair in the lower right corner. He probably has a much harder time navigating this city than me in my rented Toyota. And yet, he seems to be doing fine. I don’t think I would ask him for directions, though. I just know if I told him I was driving, he’d look at me and say, “For the love of crumb cake, lady, take a cab.”