workingPosted: January 19, 2012
One thing I have in common with my dad is that today in my fifties I feel about my job the way he felt when he was in his fifties. That is to say frustrated and aggravated by corporate silliness and stupidity. The difference is that my dad was able to comfortably take early retirement at age 55. I’m on the other side of that milestone and see another nine years of work before retirement is a realistic option.
I keep repeating, mantra-like, that I am grateful to be employed in this economy, and I am. I keep telling myself that I can make the conscious choice to simply choose to like what I am doing. That sort of works, some of the time. And I do remember a lot of the time to look at the Buddha when needed.
The quotidian reality is that I look forward to my evening time with Terry: newspaper, iPad, and scotch. And the week becomes a race to Friday.
Still, it is not as bleak as it sounds, and the truth is that my identity is not defined by my job. I remember Studs Terkel’s elegy to labor, Working, being a big seller in my early B. Dalton days, and I remember a book coming out to counter that: Work: I do it for the Money. I fall into the latter camp. But the reality is that I have a marvelous life with my wife and our four-footed child Tasha, and it is supported by the work I do.