Thinking back to that time when I was growing up in the 60’s, I recall that there were many talented people back then in that S.W. Baltimore neighborhood. There were people with artistic talents, excellent athletes, some real talented musicians, some others who could have been entrepreneurs and many other budding talents as well. The problem was for most that there was no ‘mentor’ to guide and inspire them to do something with their talents. While there were a couple of people that I knew that had an idea from a relatively young age what field they wanted to get into, they also had the support that many didn’t. For instance, I had a good friend who went on to become a Mechanical Engineer as he seemed to know even back when he was a teenager that was what he wanted to do. There was another guy who as long as I can remember knew that he wanted to get into broadcasting, and still has his feet planted in that field today.
Speaking for myself and probably others as well, my parents had very little education and were just trying to get by raising a bunch of kids. Most of the folks had no idea about ‘careers’ for their kids as the parents grew up in a different time when there wasn’t really careers as such, but mainly jobs that they did. While it certainly isn’t the only factor, I believe the reason that so many people back then drifted into drugs and alcohol is that they had no direction. There wasn’t really anybody to point them, encourage them, and they just drifted along. For instance, my brother Tom was a very intelligent person, and could have done some good things with his life, but unfortunately he got involved with drugs at a young age and it dictated his whole life. Many others in the neighborhood went down the same road.
While I am no ‘Dr Phil’, I do know that there were many people back then who could have done some really great things if circumstances had been different. But it was a different world back then, and although I am very grateful that I grew up during that time, it wasn’t all good, and there was a lot of unfulfilled promise that was never realized.
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