What are the hidden or unexpected joys of life as one ages into retirement and the “golden” years?
When I was in my misspent youth, I could never have imagined how easy life can be when there are fewer tomorrows.
I am a robust 87, and am fond of saying that I am approaching ninety at the breakneck speed of at which the final sheets in a roll of toilet paper disappear.
In the meantime, I exploit my remaining joys. Suffice to say that I do almost nothing that I don’t want to do, and I do almost everything that I do want to do. I am the Lou Gehrig of life; the luckiest man on the face of the Earth.
When I rise slowly and reluctantly from my warm bed my most pressing decisions are which of my 30 pairs of leisure pants do I wear to putter around my house and what do I want for lunch. Dinner is long-range planning to be avoided. I still enjoy time with my soos (significant other, opposite sex), a bottle of good claret or Chardonnay, and reading a good book with glee and discarding a bad book with disdain. I still enjoy writing after sixty or so years of being a slave to words that I fear it has become a habit bordering on addiction. I like it so well that I spread the joy by teaching, now by zoom, at several consulting firms using a text that I wrote for that specific purpose.
Now I write and publish books through a firm that I started five years ago, The Expressive Press. It has grown from one book and one author (me) to thirty books and seven authors, with more on the runway. The firm has also grown from one employee (me) to four associates, two in Bangladesh and two in Pittsburgh.
Now, a query: How do I change ‘fewer tomorrows’ to ‘more tomorrows’? My answer is in the third paragraph above. Yours?
PS: Gary Cooper, who played Lou Gehrig in the 1942 movie Pride of the Yankees, spoke that famous line in front of a silent and sobbing crowd at Yankee Stadium one year after Gehrig died a age 37 of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, ALS, which became known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.