“The American Dream is dead,” said the young man at the table behind me.
I was sitting in a coffee shop and sipping my mocha.
“Between all the student loans and the job market it’s more like the American Disaster,” another voice chimed in.
“Yeah. Tell me about it. My credit cards are almost maxed out and all I do is go to school, work, sleep, and do homework. I’m barely hanging on. Forget trying to climb up,” I heard a third person say.
It was at this point I decided to sneak a peak. There were four people in their early 20s sitting around the table. Three were animated, passionate, and in agreement about the bleakness of their futures. But there was one who hadn’t spoke.
He hadn’t joined in the conversation yet. He sat quietly, eyes staring down at the cup he cradled in his hands. His thumbs were tracing lines around the rim. He had just opened his mouth to speak as I turned back around.
“I mean…I don’t know. Yeah, I’ve got some debt but I’m also getting a good education. I’m not really afraid to work hard and there’re good jobs out there. So…yeah. I mean, I feel pretty good about the future.”
I wrote The American Dream Revisited for him.