Monday, August 31, 2009

When Passion Meets Economics

It was announced today that the Disney Co. is acquiring Marvel for $4B. My first thought was of my son, who is a huge Marvel Comics fan. He is 19 and planning to become a high school band teacher. He has marched drum corp and sits around envisioning and trying his hand at writing marching drills to his favorite soundtracks. And Marvel movies are at the top of his list of "good music". He was in class today, so I decided to leave him a text informing him of this new business deal for his beloved Marvel. As soon as he was out of class I receive a text that said, "WHAT?!?" and quickly followed by another that said, "THAT'S CRAP!" Did I mention he's 19?

So today was the day that my son's reality was hit hard with economics winning over passion. His own passion for music taught him a long time ago that some jobs and passions just aren't based on the salary one would receive for that job, but for the fulfillment received in doing what is LOVED and trying to impart that passion to the younger generations. But at 19, that passion isn't for sale. And at 19, he really hasn't had to try to live on that passion either. It gets hard to pay the bills at times on low-salaried passions. I tried to point out to him that until the last few years as Marvel has delved into the movie business, they were a simple, little comic book company. Having never been a comic book aficionado myself, I can only guess that there have been plenty of lean times for the company. But with the likes of Spiderman, X-Men and Iron-Man on the big screen, they were suddenly seeing dollar signs like never before. But how fleeting and fickle are Hollywood movies? Only a couple of duds like The Punisher or Daredevil can put the little comic book company back on the map of little comic book companies. So why WOULDN'T they jump at an offer of $4B?

Today my son discovered that everything, heart and soul, is for sale...for some people. I seriously think he still has a shade of arrogance and a sense of superiority along with his naivete. It still seems to be intact. A little beaten up, a lot disappointed, but mostly intact. I have to admit I'm pulling for his naivete. I hope that his passion for his music can withstand the world, the economy, the temptations that will no doubt present themselves between he and his fulfillment. I'd like to think my son's life would be balanced and happy. And I'd like to think that he leaves others in this world with a sense of awe and passion for the simple things of beauty like art and music. And maybe through him, I had just a little to do with that also.

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