Say, kiddies (which means Millennials): Pay attention to ‘de ol’ man here: Ain’t no such thing as retirement. At least IF you have an active mind.
I’ve had a couple of pleasant emails from classmates who graduated with me back in 1967 from high school in Seattle. We will miss this week’s reunion up north due to our Oklahoma commitment.
Turns out, people are a lot like bullets: Once fired, they tend to hold to their trajectories until they hit something. Or die. Hence, the “winners” and “interesting” people from high school have turned out to be the overachievers or still “interesting” people here at the other end of life.
The main point here is that retirement as a concept hasn’t happened yet, though we’re chipping at the concept.
Near as I can figure, there are three or four key aspects to successful retirement.
First, on the money side, naturally, you need a little dough for food, paying property taxes, and miscellaneous that will beggar you if you so much as blink. Auto insurance (a tax because government requires it), home insurance (not a tax, but foolish to be without), medical insurance/ACA ( again a government tax – because it is not optional; it’s a collection racket for the for-profit healthcare system…). That and more takes money.
Since we pretty much know that short of a (socially engineered, coincidental of course) age-targeting pandemic, Social Security will be bankrupt in 2037 (or earlier), the money side of retiring has kept me working 60-hours a week, or more: writing, consulting, and what-not.
You really need to be seriously working your retirement money plan not later than age 35.
Second aspect of retirement is being healthy.
First subroutine of health is exercise.
Tomorrow, our new Gold’s Home Gym will arrive. Elaine, who owes here phenomenally misleading good looks to a combination of outstanding genes and being some of an exercise fanatic/gym rat, read the assembly manual online a couple of times Sunday. Assembling it will take (by web accounts) on the order of 4-6 hours, which is plenty of exercise for one day in my book.
Looking at Elaine, however, the benefits of exercise are obvious. A colleague asked me in 2000 at a party “Has she had any, you know, body work done?” I laughed at the time – and still snicker out it. No, that is one of the major side effects of a life-long fitness program.
Gold’s, by the way, and others, are now doing “fitness logs” so people don’t lose interest. They’ve dialed things in so if you’re doing serious strength training, you do three sets of 8-reps each. Toning is with lighter weight and 10 sets of 8 reps. Someone who is a tad overweight (ahem…) is instructed “Get on the machine and keep moving for 20-30 minutes.” That’ll be a challenge.
There’s an old saying: Do something every day for 30-days and at the end of that time it’s a habit. So I will write up 30 daily logs…
Second subroutine of health is nutrition.
Elaine happened to be doing some studying recently on when the body produces its biggest hits of human growth hormone (HGH). She already knew that 3-4 hours of sleep into the night and then again 2-hours on was in the studies.
But what she found was some discussion of how taking Vitamin B6 and a solid dose of L-Arginine (and for us Citrulline which is an arginine precursor) at bedtime. This is in addition to our other vitamin stacks in the morning.
Amazon has Source Naturals L-Arginine L-Citrulline Complex, 1000 MG, Supports Peak Performance,240 Tablets for about $24-bucks. For the B-6 I take the Twinlab Stress B-Complex Caps with Vitamin C, 250 Capsules which is $29-bucks, or so. One of each in the morning and again at bedtime.
The secret sauce seems to come from two directions. First is the discussion that the L-Arginine and B6 may augment the HGH results at night. But the other is that the L-Arginine seems to increase NO2 in the body which is good for muscles, toning and development-wise.
Third aspect of retirement is Activities.
More than one of my ’67 high school classmates had heard a few years ago from classmates how some of us would “never be able to retire and would become bored.”
Are you kidding? Not enough time in the day around here.
In a recent Peoplenomics article, I discussed the concept of an Activity-Centered Home. The idea of an ACH is that you figure as many fun and interesting activities as you can shoe horn into a house. Then you set up two day types: Working/maintenance days and play days.
Now you set up your home so that each of your “activities” (like hobbies) has its own specific area. In the Peoplenomics article, “A Software-Directed Life” I explain this little spinet of code I wrote in VB/Excel because it really is running my life now:
First, a random number determines if I work, or play, on a particular day.
Next, random numbers are assigned to all possibility activities. Two clicks and you get:
As you can see, there is always too much to do.
Maintenance days (for activities like painting/art/music) involve getting everything totally ready for the next “play” session. Drums and guitars need tuning, the next instruction video needs to be found and bookmarked. A gas welding “maintenance day” is when plans are sketch, the metal for the next project is figured and cut. The Play day is when you light up the torch or turn on the MIG rig.
Today, as an example, the Harbor Fright metal-cutting band saw has started dropping the blade off, so I have to watch a video on alignment of that (and do the steps) so that cutting metal will result in straight, not wobbly-angled cuts that require a pass through the milling machine. 805RoadKing’s video here is great.
And so it goes…. Point is that working this list top-down ensures I eventually get around to most of my major hobbies and do them either well in play mode (as in play with ham gear) or in repair/maintain/improve mode so the play time is perfect.
I’m trying to sneak “Find perfect Cuban bread recipe” onto Elaine’s list or mine…
Fourth aspect of retirement is Education
One of the keys in The Millennial’s Missing Manual is realizing that almost anyone can do anything. I’ve met paraplegic pilots, got eye issues, asthma and eczema myself, but overcoming any “difficulty” in life seems to come down to just two subroutines that make up “education.”
First subroutine is to become a well-read expert in a subject area. I’m going through two massively difficult problems right now.
The first involves getting our home studio ready for daughter Denise visiting at the end of the month to lay down some tracks. Fine, but I have never had to actually install and tune VST (virtual instrument plugins) in any of my DAWs (digital audio workstation software).
When I was running recording school, I was the analog dude.
“Error: Unable to open ReWire subsystem -100” was the kind of problem left to staff. Besides, we were all Mac/ProTools-based.
OMG they hide VST’s in how many freakin directories in Win 10? At least four that I know of, and that’s before the re-install of GPO-4’s Aria players .dll’s and such due to a migration from an old HDD to a SSD (Translation: old SATA spinning drive to Solid-state drive.)
The second will be the grown up version of our Breaking News page which will go out on its own web addy and will be organized in multiple ways. You’ll be able, for example, to read today’s news based on timelines, or by subjects, or by future-oriented keywords.
Not terribly difficult? Er…the language of programmers today is different than when we were breaking ground on data management in the 1980’s. First-level, second-level, third-level sorts have become categories, taxonomies, and items and so forth. Sheesh. When you’re old it gets harder to unlearn the original way and relearn the new lingo du jour which companies in software are prone to do. But, we digress…
The Second subroutine in education is adaptation.
This is the point of desperation where -after you’ve actually read the manuals and they don’t give you advice that you can directly follow – you get to cobble up creative solutions. Best helping hand here is TRIZ, which may be a Wiki entry but the book And Suddenly the Inventor Appeared: TRIZ, the Theory of Inventive Problem Solving ($40) is totally worth every cent and why it hasn’t been mass-adopted in public education K-12 escapes me.
Point is, once you are out of the “formal” education system, then your real learning in life begins.
One of our Peoplenomics subscribers was kind enough to send me a copy of Dr. Michael Newton’s Journey of Souls: Case Studies of Life Between Lives which is now on the reading list.
I think everyone, after a few close brushes with Death, figures out that Life isn’t going on forever and you get serious researching the “What Comes Next?” problem.
By the way, we watched Holy Man: The USA vs. Douglas White this weekend on Amazon video. Excellent and the nearly 5-star ranking is well-deserved.
Our Monday morning Bottom Line about education in “retirement” is that once freed from the sheepskin mill mentality, you can actually focus on the important stuff in life. These being the topics and details that really matter to your playing of the Game of Living.
Always a different path than anyone else, though you may share interests, everyone comes down a birth canal and saunters off collecting experiences until they leave some years later. Thereafter, we may get to compare notes.
Eye Doc Day
For those following the adventures of George’s Left Eye, another trip to the eye doc palace today. This time a highly regarded retina specialist will be looking at the retinal/macula edema.
In our last exciting episode, my surgeon who performed the anterior lens implant started me on a fairly stiff dose of prednisone in the eye (4X daily) and the vision improvement has verged on remarkable.
The logical outcome today would be for the retinal fellow to extend the 4X rate for another week (or two) and possibly augment with a long-lasting (shot in the eye) steroid and then do a slow taper on the steroid drops over a month or three.
Main thing is it’s fairly uncommon for “normal” cataract lens implants. It’s when in my case (after 25-50 years) your first lens implant has a catastrophic issue, and you go to a second lens implant only to find that due to scarring that second lens had to be in the anterior chamber.
Shots in the eye, by the way, sound a lot worse than they are. Anesthetics are pretty good.l
If you have anyquestions, send ’em along – I’ll eye out for them…er…so to speak.
SEE you tomorrow morning and write when you get rich,