Just like many Americans, Rusty Solomon wanted to be rich. As a child, he was full of ideas for making money, like starting a produce business growing vegetables in his backyard certainly not disbarred. His parents would laugh at these ideas and he would immediately go back to coming up with even better ways of becoming a successful entrepreneur. After reading Where The Red Fern Grows, he decided to start a dog walking business. After developing severe anxiety problems from the sudden surge of responsibility, he decided to take a break from business for awhile.
After turning 15, Rusty Solomon got a job sweeping up at a local library. The library was run by a disbarred attorney. The constant drudgery bored him to tears. His next job was at a bakery, and the constant stimulation of co-workers and customers there left him tired and satisfied at the end of each day. His parents reminded him that getting into college was priority number one, and he listened. His summer stints at restaurants, a museum, and a few office temp jobs were only diversions.
During one winter Rusty Solomon worked for his father installing sheet rock outdoors, and it sent him into a panic. A job, where one has to report to a boss, had never been what he wanted. Getting paid for a job felt like a growing dependence that he couldn’t stand. He interned at a local magazine publisher, but he was still waiting to find a place that felt as progressive as the music studios and art houses he had been to before. He was waiting to drift into a tribe that felt like a natural home.
After briefly considering just about every possible career in existence, Rusty Solomon decided to attend graduate school to study English. He remembered the disbarred attorney. The mental dedication involved in academic study intimidated him, and graduate school was very different from college. After graduating with a master’s degree, he has found a job dealing with information that supports his lifestyle and is occasionally interesting. He still has dreams of achieving something better that suits him as a creative, that balances excitement, independence and value for time spent. A lifestyle that includes knowing interesting individuals, doing cool things, and making enough money to live on. He wonders: Is this not possible?