I knew a guy once that would measure distance in telephone poles.
"I'm only about 30 telephone poles from being back to the shop," he would tell me.
Today I am measuring time in editorial columns. As you read this, I am 50 Editor's Notebooks (maybe less) from retirement.
Damnedest thing, my Goddess and I have been talking about this for a few years; dreaming of the day when we would no longer be a slave to the clock in the morning and deadlines on Tuesdays...yet somehow it wasn't until I saw my job advertised in The Journal last week that a kind of reality set in. After a lifetime, a good lifetime of employment for both of us, we are only 12 months away from a new adventure together, as we move forward to celebrate life after jobs.
I'm not even sure why they call it retired.
Personally, I think it would be better if we just called it "tired". At this point in life, tired is often a great description of how I feel about life in the workforce.
When I was in my late 30s, I had a full-time job in marketing, balancing millions in customer sales, managed our home-based recycling business, acted as a groups-sales representative for the Ottawa Sens, and did a fair amount of lay ministry for the church in my spare time. Not to sound trite, but frankly I enjoyed it. Eighty percent of the time, it seemed like more fun than work.
Life has been good.
But at some point, I guess everything gets old...and everyone gets tired. Twenty years later, I've reached the tired point...so it's time to look forward to retiring.
But first, we have another 52 weeks, or less, of Journal columns to get through. After that, who knows? Maybe I'll still contribute the occasional piece of questionable literature to print media. Or maybe I'll just sit at home, binge watch Netflix and eat bag after bag of bonbons. Perhaps I'll write another novel or run for public office.
I'll be retired...I can do what I want.