“So, how’s retirement going, Paul?” A nickel. Just one nickel for every time I’ve been asked this question. That’s all I’d need to pay off my mortgage. Don’t misunderstand. The question is asked with the kindest of intentions. People are generally happy for me, with the exception of my former colleagues who secretly wish they were in my place.
My answer is typically cordial, and informative. Who is surprised by this? It also is a bit on the lengthy side, if time allows and I have the inquisitive one trapped. Retirement can be lonely, so we retirees seek out conversation with anyone, even if they have their arms filled with bags of groceries. I actually prefer that audience because they rarely ask follow up questions.
My answer to the “How’s retirement?” question is this. “I’m not retired from the work force, just retired from teaching, at least in its previous form. I may very well choose to teach private lessons, or night classes, at some point in the future. I’m VERY happy in my ability to focus more on my art business, and am also enjoying house painting during normal hours, rather than the after school shift. I miss working with kids big time. I miss making them laugh (sometimes on purpose), watching in awe at the things they’d create, and yelling at them when they run in the hall. I do NOT miss witnessing projectile vomit, nose picking, butt scratching, and tattling.”
As a visual artist, I adhere STRONGLY to the “A picture paints a thousand words” doctrine. Since I’m quite the techie, I often step it up and employ the “Moving pictures paint MORE than a thousand words” philosophy. “Moving Pictures” also happens to be Rush’s best album. That’s not open to debate, though your comments of agreement are welcome. Speaking of “comments,” since it relates to what I was writing about, and I’m a stickler for staying on point, they ARE welcome and even encouraged, especially if they’re glowing in nature.
The number of readers addicted to my ingenious and thoughtful blogs has been growing at an alarming rate. The number of comments, however, is not. My manager just told me I’m starting to run on a little long with my sentences and am coming DANGEROUSLY close to veering off point. Personally, I think she’s just a little grumpy this morning. She also requests I not use “all caps” so often. It uses more ink, and money is a little tight in the day6art account. In the words of Steve Martin, “WELL EXCUUUUUUUUSE ME!!!!!!!” I feel better now.
Please enjoy the video. The sci fi clip from my previous blog was such a hit I decided I’d try and capture the electricity of my “retirement” experience thus far in a short film. It’s a bit more “family friendly” than the previous footage, so feel free to gather the kids around your laptop for an evening of enjoyment. Don’t forget the popcorn!