Most Likely To Succeed

Astronaut?  No, Patrick Zaun was never any good at science when he was in school.

Investment Banker?  No, people would then ask him for stock tips or yell at him for being responsible for the most recent economic meltdown.

Travel Adventure Guide?  Patrick might be able to get away with that.  He was the star on nearly every one of his high school’s sports team, and the group he hung out with back then went camping from time to time.  He could likely sell everyone on the idea that the kid voted Most Likely To Succeed went on to open his own travel adventure company.

But what if someone asked for the name of his company?  It’d be easy for any of the Class of ’94 Reunion attendees to pull out their smartphone and search for it.  When they found no results, he’d be the laughing stock of the reunion, just like that freak, Michael Krasinski was back in school.

“I wonder if that freak will turn up tonight,” Patrick wondered.  Then he thought, “Oh God!  What if Michael Krasinski turned out to be the most successful of us all?”

There’s no way that Patrick could tell the kid that he used to beat up on a daily basis that his biggest tormentor grew up to be a used tire salesman in Northern Ontario; just another faded jock whose glory days ended when his playing days did.

The time for thinking was done, though.  Patrick’s former classmates were filing into their old school.  He had to think up a story and think it up quick.

Elephant caretaker?  “That’s it!” he said to himself.  “I had enough of my big corporate job and took on a more meaningful role: elephant caretaker at a private zoo in India.  Everyone loves elephants and if anyone tries to go all PETA crazy on me about how a zoo is no place for a wild creature, I’ll just encourage them  to watch a nature video; one where all the elephants are killed by lions.  That will shut them up.”

Elephant caretaker it was.


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