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Saturday, August 15, 2015

That nasty old guy ruining your life

It was a beautiful night with family and friends around the campfire. We were all having a glass of wine and watching the meteor shower. Great night for conversation.

One guy was asked if he was looking at retirement. He'd really like to retire soon, but he did the math. By the time he was eighty he'd be losing too much money so he's going to work much longer.

I said, "Screw that old guy. You don't know him. Don't let him ruin your life."

It got a few laughs, but I was only half joking. Would 80 year old you be thankful that you worked all those years in a job you don't much care for anymore? Would there even be an 80 year old you? This guy has already suffered on major heart attack. He's doing fine now, but that's got to be a warning.

It's not like the guy wouldn't know what to do with himself. He's a talented musician and artist and makes money doing those things. Could it be that after decades working the same job, like some many other people, he fears change? Yes, the math looks bad at 80 for an early retirement now. That's assuming there won't be a major financial crash in the next 20 years. Judging from even the last 20 that looks like a bad bet. No matter what he decides, there's no way to know what the future will bring.

Unlike him I did not have the luxury of choosing when to retire. We are all just one injury from being unable to do our old jobs. I lost out on all the normal retirement planning that would have given me a better pension. For years my income's been losing ground to inflation. Yet here I sit, watching the birds, sipping a coffee, and watching the fog lift off the lake. He's back at the job he doesn't much like anymore -in fear of what nasty 80 year old him might think.



  1. Wisdom and "safety" don't always tell us the same thing. Besides, safety is a lie.

    1. I had to learn the hard way that safety is an illusion. The universe favors the bold.

  2. We think too much don't we.the state's fear machine is doing a good job of keeping people on the straight and narrow path it believes is good for us! From craddle to grave is scares us in staying in the same groove. Not sure I am making any sense here Six bears, too early in the morning

    1. Sounds like sense to me Joel. Fear keeps us under control and prevents us from really living.