Appreciating Retirement and a Short Hiatus

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It is human nature to adapt.  It’s why we are the most successful species on the planet.  Well, that and opposable thumbs.  This penchant for adaptation has its downside, however.  No matter how exciting, thrilling or exhilarating something is today, tomorrow it will be just so-so.  Sex is, I think, the greatest example of all.  Sex is fantastic.  But doing it with the same person for 20 years gets old.  Next thing you know your having an affair or shopping at Adam and Eve to spice things up.  By the way, the latter is the preferred method, though unfortunately not the most popular.

Retirement is the same.  How many years do you spend in your cubicle, or whatever special work place prison your career favors, dreaming of the day you can retire and do whatever it is you want.  Then two years into retirement, you can’t remember why it seemed so great back then.  In fact, it’s kind of boring.  Well, there it is.  Adaptation.  Everything eventually becomes normal and boring. More

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Bacon is the Question and the Answer is Yes

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Mmm, Bacon.

I’ve seen a new study is going around about processed meat (bacon, hotdogs, etc.) and red meat (beef for most of us).  The studies are saying that eating these meats will increase your risk of death by up to 20%.  Read about it here, but I doubt you’ll get the whole story.  I doubt the study tells the whole story and if it does you’d have to read the entire thing because the media are sensationalizing parts of it.  These things are usually aimed at controlling your behavior anyway, not giving you real health advice.  In this case, one of the doctor’s in the study is quoted as saying no amount of processed meat or red meat is good for you.

Really?  None?  One steak a year on the Fourth of July is bad for you?  Food is bad for you?  Please!  Food is good for you and red meat contains essential nutrients.  Should you eat it three times a day every day?  Probably not, but you just know there’s a 97 year old dude that claims his longevity is because of eating bacon everyday.  He’s probably smokes and drinks too. More

Wading into the Censorship Debate

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As many of you know, I am not only retired and a blogger but I also write and publish books.  We’ll OK, book (singular) so far.  Still I consider myself a writer, as do many people.  It is for this reason that I am choosing to discuss an important issue facing writers that has cropped up over the last couple of weeks.  PayPal, a payment processor for many online businesses, has told several online book sellers that they need to stop carrying certain types of legal fiction.  I know this because I publish at Smashwords and they are one of the retailers effected.

The affected fiction is all erotica, so far.  You can read exactly what is affected by reading the Smashwords press releases linked at the bottom of this post.  It doesn’t matter, however, what is being banned.  A payment processor, a virtual monopoly, is dictating what you and I can read.  They are playing moral police.  PayPal claims, and they are probably being honest, that this is being done due to pressure from credit card companies.  I don’t know what the motives are or who is actually behind this, but it is scary. More

Disposable Laptops

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I missed my post this week.  I have a good excuse.  The hard drive in my laptop started clicking.  I use my laptop to write and the thought of my hard drive dying didn’t sit well.  I bought a new one yesterday.  I had everything backed up, one copy on an external hard drive and one copy on Carbonite.  I don’t want to lose anything!

I found that I could buy a better laptop that I had for less money.  My old one cost about $550 two years ago.  It had a 15-inch class screen, 4MB ram and a 250 MB hard drive.  My new one cost $479.  It has a 17-inch screen, 4 MB ram and a 500 MB hard drive.  My son bought a similar machine last year and it cost him over $600. More

Retirement Doesn’t Guarantee Happiness

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Life is full of wonder. Retirement is an opportunity to discover all that this world has to offer. This was taken in Myrtle Beach, SC.

I’ve seen some people latelyask questions like, “Is retirement a let down?” on retirement forums.  Strange question considering you are essentially trading a job and a steady paycheck for no job and a steady paycheck.  On the other hand, I suppose if you expect retirement to solve all the problems in your life, it can be a let down.

You’ve probably seen those couples that fight and argue and just don’t seem to be a good fit, but they decide that getting married or having a baby will fix everything.  It won’t, by the way.  Retirement is the same.  If  you’re depressed, in a bad marriage, unhealthy, etc., retirement isn’t going to make that stuff better.  It might even make it worse. More

Imagine No Possessions

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That’s a John Lennon lyric from his famous song, Imagine.  I hate that song.  I know I’m kind of out of the mainstream on that.  Lot’s of people seem to love the song and sentiment.  Some of it’s OK.  I like peace.  But all the Marxist claptrap about no money and no possessions, well, if you can’t say something nice…

So, why am I trashing a song by a dead Beatle?  Well I saw this article about a woman in Germany who gave up money back in the 90’s.  Hasn’t spent a cent since.  She barters and trades and sleeps on people’s couches.  She likes it, apparently.  Why not?  She’s living off the generosity of others. More

Enjoy It While You Got It

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There are so many things to enjoy in this life. Seems a shame not to take the time.

I retired almost a year and a half ago.  I was cruising right along until about this time last year.  My father-in-law took ill and died last spring.  That put a hitch in my retirement journey.  It’s only been in the last couple of months that I feel like I’m back on track.  I’m really enjoying my retirement again, following my passions and I’m generally happy.

I don’t say this to brag, but to make the point that life is full of bumps in the road.  There are so many bad things that happen.  From major events, like loved one’s dying or finding out you need major surgery, to minor mishaps, like a washing machine flooding your house or your truck needed a thousand dollars worth of ball joints.  All of those have happened to me in the last five years, but the way.  Stuff like that can make you wonder if someone isn’t out to get you.

But between those bad times are the good times.  When you feel great and things are going well, too many of us take those times for granted, me included.  More

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