When They Were 22…

  • At 22, Johnny Cash went from decoding Russian communications for the Air Force to recording his first country single at Sun Records.

  • Bill Murray, a one-time aspiring surgeon, was arrested with nine pounds of marijuana at O’Hare Airport. The incident forced him to drop out of college, and his brother eventually persuaded Bill to give comedy a try in Chicago.
  • At age 22, Jack White started a band with his wife. They later became known as The White Stripes.

  • Dissatisfied with the direction of his life and longing for immediate involvement in politics, Karl Rove dropped out of college. At 22, after being accused of trying to steal an election, he was rewarded by then Republican National Committee Chairman George H.W. Bush with the national chairmanship of the College Republicans. Rove was later instrumental in the election of George W. Bush in 2000.
  • Pamela Anderson discovered at a football game at 22 after getting her first breast implants.
  • Giorgio Armani originally wanted to be a surgeon but realized it wasn’t for him. So he tried his luck at photography. Still struggling, he took a job at a department store and discovered his love for fashion. His boss, recognizing a talent in him, gave him a promotion. He later started his own fashion chain that many people recognize today.
  • At 22, Desi Arnaz moved to Miami from Cuba when Fidel’s regime moved in. To make ends meet, he bussed restaurants, drove taxis, and did odd jobs. Unable to deny his desire to perform, he began playing at local night clubs, then started his own band. He and his band were discovered and made it all the way to broadway, where Desi met the starlet Lucille Ball, six years his senior.

These amazing stories that I’ve been posting on Facebook and Twitter all week are from a book called When They Were 22 written by Brad Dunn. As promised, I revealed the source of all my anecdotes as soon as I turned 22! So I’m joining the ranks of others on the endless road of self-discovery.

A few people thought that I was posting these anecdotes to show how behind the rest of us were in our lives compared to these celebrities and entrepreneurs when they were our age. Far from it! These are instead to show that when they were our age, they didn’t necessarily know what they wanted from life either. The point is to keep trying new things, keep being true to yourself, and remember – as they say…

The best is yet to come!

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