He has always loved airplanes, and last summer I took him on his first airplane flight, to see my parents in Tennessee. Since then, his career plan has been to become a pilot.
This was not always the case. When he was very little, he desired to be a baseball player, like his hero Sammy Sosa. We live fairly close to Wrigley Field, so he's gotten to see "Old Corky" and lots of other Cub greats play a number of games.
He plays little league every summer. I remember that the first time I signed him up for baseball was the day that the Space Shuttle Colombia was destroyed. Maybe this was an omen.
I happened to have the day off of work (I think it was my beloved Pulaski Day) on the first day his team, the Minor League Tigers, had practice. He was chatting up the coach and told him that he loved baseball and planned on having a great season. Coach John asked to see a display of his prowess, handing him a baseball and asking Adam to throw it to him.
Adam wound up and threw. The baseball went almost perfectly perpendicular to where he had aimed.
"Well, I think I'm going to be more of a hitter."
He improved rapidly, and continues to enjoy baseball, but has definitely dropped it as a career plan.
Since he was a baby, he's loved money-- not just the concept, but physical money. One of his first words was "coint"-- his word for "coins."
When he was three or so, he came to me and told me he'd made a decision: that he'd decided that he was going either a policeman or a bank robber.
Dad: "A bank robber?"
Adam: "Yes, they make a lot of money."
Dad: "Aren't you afraid of being arrested?"
Adam: "What do you mean?"
Dad: "Robbing banks is against the law. If you get caught, you get arrested."
Adam: "Oh. Well then maybe I should just be a policeman."
He went through a period a couple of years ago where he decided he was going to be a hockey player. Never mind that he could hardly skate at that point.
My landlord and upstairs neighbor is a season ticket holder for the Chicago Wolves, and invited Adam and I to a game. My son had been to a Black Hawks game when he was little, but our seats had been high up in the stands of the United Center. This game was at the Allstate Center (it used to be the Rosemont Horizon), a much more intimate setting. And we had seats near the ice.
It was a good game-- lots of contact. At some point, a player checked another player into the boards near us with an impressive concussion that we could feel from where we sat. I don't think Adam had considered this aspect of the sport-- his jaw dropped at the force of the check.
He never brought up being a hockey player again.