En Passant #5: Ahh Retirement! Wouldn’t It Be Nice If We Actually Could.

It’s always interesting to see life from another’s perspective, isn’t it?  Steve Tobak (Business Network Australia Report  June 4) provided some insight into working careers and retirement (well semi-retirement really).  He suggested that there are ten signs that you’ve either had enough of work or that work has had enough of you.  Here’s his ten with some added comments, a couple of mine own (italics) and a few from other sources.  Make of them what you will!

  1. You think cell phones and email are “the latest thing.”  Oh!  I thought it was Blackberries and the digital voice recorder.
  2. Every flight attendant knows you on sight, but your next-door neighbour of 15 years doesn’t recognize you.  Obviously I don’t have 50 billion frequent flyer points or I fly on airlines where the attendants’ couldn’t care less whether you’re alive or dead.  Dare I say Q**t*s here?  Mind you, they have improved – a bit.  As for neighbours.  Enough said.
  3. You literally feel lost on the weekend.  I’ve never felt lost on the weekend!  The house Fuhrer has a ‘to do’ list a mile (sorry kilometre) long.
  4. You live in a permanent state of burnout.  Is that how you feel when you come home all shagged and burnt out from trying to actually achieve something against the passive aggressive resistance of the management idiots up the line?
  5. Breakfast consists of pills and prune juice.  Pills and prune juice?  Luxury!  Try black coffee and yesterday’s croissant!
  6. You spend more time grooming your ear and nose hair than you do shaving your beard. No, I have no equivalent for women; I won’t even go there.  Now this is a truism!  Where does the hair fall like the autumn leaves from?  Your head!  Where does it sprout like kikuyu grass in the tropics?  Your nose and ears!!
  7. When your boss yells at you, you’re secretly relieved that he still knows who you are.  And you realise that, despite all the management training he/she’s undertaken, nothing’s changed.
  8. You reply so fast to tweets and Facebook updates that everyone thinks you’re creepy.  Certainly creepy, but not as ignorantly insulting as the self-opinionated egotist who consider themselves far too important to deign to respond to emails from the minions (well, anybody really).  Also try getting them to respond to a left phone message!
  9. You used to get so much email you couldn’t get to it all; now you can’t wait to get your daily spam.  Ahhh email!  Never has so much inconsequentiality been sent by so many, to such numbers (including Bcc’s), to be saved, in perpetuity, in Inboxes with such little chance of eliciting a prompt and erudite reply!
  10. Your 84-year-old father looks better than you do.  Damn you!  My father always looked better than I did until he ceased to be the comparator and became a fond memory.
  11. When you finally realise that ‘nothing is more difficult to take in hand, more perilous to conduct, nor more uncertain in its success, than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order of things’.  Nicolo Machiavelli you were so right!!  And so succinct in the saying of it!
  12. When you become aware that getting out of bed at four a.m., to start work at 6 a.m., in order to save an hour a day driving a car to and from work, is no longer a good return on investment.
  13. And finally:  ‘The trouble with the rat race is, that even if you win, you’re still a rat! – Lily Tomlin or William Sloane Coffin (take your pick).

Also, here are some useful phrases I dug up from somewhere for use in business situations:

“Thank you. We’re all refreshed and challenged by your unique point of view.”

“I don’t know what your problem is, but I’ll bet it’s hard to pronounce.”.

“Any connection between your reality and mine is purely coincidental”

“I like you. You remind me of when I was young and stupid.”

“I’m not being rude. You’re just insignificant.”

“Yes, I am an agent of Satan, but my duties are largely ceremonial.”

“How about never?  Is never good for  you?”

“You sound reasonable – time to up my medication.”

“I’ll try being nicer if you’ll try being smarter.”

“It might look like I’m doing nothing, but at the cellular level I’m really quite busy.”

“You are validating my inherent mistrust of strangers.”

“I see you’ve set aside this special time to humiliate yourself in public.”

“Someday, we’ll look back on this, laugh nervously, and change the subject.”

About deknarf

Australian born and bred who has spent most of his working life in R&D and IP management with earlier forays in the newspaper industry and martial arts. Fortunate enough to be living in one of the best countries in the World, even though I might get grumpy with it from time to time.
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