Living The Dream


Say what you will about it, it is incredibly prevalent in almost all of our day to day conversations. So much so that sometimes it’s hard to even distinguish whether or not someone is being sarcastic or truthful.

This happens to me a lot. I speak sarcasm like a 2nd language. It tends to roll off my tongue without me even trying to. Sometimes to the point where people don’t know if I’m being serious or not. And while I like to keep people on their toes, it’s not always a good thing.

Usually, I am being sarcastic, but when I’m not and people think I am it tends to be unfortunate. Let me give you an example.

So, I’m at the coffee shop I work at and someone comes to the counter. I greet them and ask how their day is going. “Fine,” or something to that affect is said and, if their chatty, they will usually ask me in return how my day is going. To which I usually respond with, “Living the dream.”

Now, right off the bat that might sound sarcastic. After all, most people aren’t living the kind of life they dreamed about. Most of us aren’t in the work environment we dreamed we would be in. So, when someone responds with “living the dream,” what they’re usually saying is sarcastic and means something to the affect of, “I wish I was doing something else with my life.” Maybe not that dramatic, but you get the idea.

Here’s the problem…I’m not being sarcastic when I say that!

I really am living the dream. It’s a dream I’ve had for a little while now. A dream to become a greater part of the coffee community here in Raleigh. A dream to help create a place where people can experience the sense of community I’ve experienced through coffee. To learn and grow in my knowledge of coffee and the coffee industry.

I know not many people get to say that. Not many people get to say that what they are doing or where they’re working is what they dreamed about.

Herein lies the problem. Such a big problem, might I add, that it is automatically thought of as sarcasm when you tell someone that you’re living the dream.

So, it catches people off guard when I tell them, “No, really. This is the dream. This is exactly what I what to be doing with my life right now.”

It’s unfortunate that it does.

If that’s you, if you immediately hear “Living the dream,” and think sarcasm, then I want you to hear me now…figure out what your dream is and go do it. Forget about the obstacles. Forget about the ‘what if’s’, forget about what other people say and pursue that dream.

You only get one life. One chance to live out your dreams. Why waste anymore time not doing what you dreamed about?

And, by the way, you may fail. As a matter of fact, there’s probably a good chance you will. But, that’s no excuse for not trying.

  1. If someone said to me, Living the Dream, I’d probably reply with, “That’s great!” I don’t see it as being sarcastic. I think it’s awesome that you say that. More people need to know how to do this, live the dream that is.

  2. Good post, AJ.

    More than sarcasm, I think people get into some sort of ‘auto mode’ and they use these replies so much it becomes part of their regular conversation. I’m betting if you ask someone a follow up like “Really, so what is that dream?” 9 out of 10 times you’d get a puzzled look or some sort of apology instead of a true answer like you would.

    I specially like your last sentence. Most of the big success stories that we know of are made up of similarly big failures (that we don’t know of). Failure is part of the growing/learning process.

    Enjoy the journey, brother.

    • Thanks Manuel! You’re right…Sarcasm may not have been the best word. I wonder if Cynical is a better way to describe it. At least it might be for me.

      That’s a great thought thought…next time someone else says “Living the dream” I will definitely respond with that question. It might throw them off a bit, but hopefully would get them thinking.

  1. July 8th, 2013

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