Retirement is the cat’s pajamas

No, this ole gent is not me. He’s not reading a Kindle.

I HAVEN’T worked one day for pay since Dec.19, 1999.*

It’s not rare that people, almost always men, drop dead not long after retirement due to having lost their life’s purpose. I did not suffer that issue.

I’ve never known what my life purpose is,** which simplifies things.

catBut it’s been almost 18 years now, the best 18 years of my life. Another world, another life, another wife, another language. I done good.

There’s something strange about living days, weeks, months and years without a job and you still have cash in your wallet. We have money due to Social Security (thanks, Uncle Sam), a small corporate pension (thanks, Hearst Corp.) and investments (thanks to wise me). Let’s hear it for capitalism!

Though I have no paying job, I do have work, almost daily. Why, just this morning, I swept the sidewalk and adjoining strip of street out front. I dumped the dirt, and it was all dirt, into a bucket, and I tossed it into the ravine.

This sort of thing does not provide life with meaning, but it does keep the sidewalk clean. That has societal value, I think.

* * * *

* A date as tattooed on my brain as is my birthday and my Air Force serial number.

** My fallback meaning-giver is Emily Dickinson whose quote elsewhere on this page does the trick for me. Were I a Christian or a Jew, which I am not, that would replace Emily Dickinson, one supposes.

10 thoughts on “Retirement is the cat’s pajamas

  1. I also vividly remember my retirement date and military serial number. You smartly retired early and have been very successful at it!
    I do not thank Uncle Sam for my Social Security. He just collected it from me and is now sending me money. I think we could have invested that money better.


    1. Patzman: As I understand it, yes, SS is giving the money we contributed back to us. However, when the program started in the 1930s, most recipients died not long after or even before they got back all they contributed. These days, however, with longer life spans, most people get back more than they contributed, sometimes considerably more. Lots of it is now tax money, i.e. welfare. Alas.

      No matter. I’m not turning mine down. A deal is a deal.


  2. I think you are gilding the lily, sir.

    You work almost every day. You write, which is work.

    And I suspect you write pieces for which you are paid in hard currency. Perhaps not on The Moon, but in other endeavors.


  3. I am a dyed-in-the-wool optimist and a born survivor. I am grateful I had the wisdom to retire to Mexico where the living is easy. As Abe Lincoln said, “I do not think much of a man who is not wiser today than he was yesterday.” It helps to be a lifelong learner.


  4. Happy retirement, Felipe. A little yard work is more like fun to me as you get to relax later and enjoy what you’ve accomplished. It also helps one keep in shape. Just curious what you will do with debris when the ravine is full?!


    1. Brent: Been almost 18 years now, and it just gets better and better apart from the issue of my getting older and older. No solution to that.

      As for the ravine, it’s a very, very big ravine. It will outlive me.


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