The problem, and maybe blessing, with looking back is you have all the cards of the deck in front of you, face up. That kid above, well, he's hampered, and maybe blessed, by an unknown and unknowable future. Our problems, and blessings, are in direct proportion with the size of our personal universe. At this moment my personal universe consisted of what wheels I'd have for the weekend, who was pitching that day for the Mets and, apparently, a Prom dance. But I know now what this kid doesn't, "the die is cast...all of yesterday's what ifs, deeds and thoughts, it is all history."
His universe would expand through the decades and he would look back and think how lucky he was. Lucky to have brothers to lean on, lucky to have parents who would sacrifice for his education. Lucky to have friends who undoubtedly saw the flaws but extended their hands regardless. Lucky to have a career that was in the helping profession.
Whatever cockiness is in the stance and eyes of this kid didn't last. Of all the adjectives that would be the least one used. The die has been cast, even at this age. Shy, quiet, reserved, studious, a listener and audience to my funnier brothers. I might tell this kid to be more ambitious, make more money. Take more chances and get more involved. But they would be wasted words - the die was cast. Life doesn't always give us what we want, but very often what we need.
Found this poem in some of my hidden papers. Sounds every bit by any 17 year old kid's anthem. Have a nice weekend.