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Turns Out I'm Not Such An Early Retiree!
Old 11-07-2011, 07:12 PM   #1
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Turns Out I'm Not Such An Early Retiree!

I thought I had done well by retiring at 52. A week ago, a guy started a Meetup group for early retirees. The description was:

Growing up, I was always envious of characters in Woody Allen movies that seem to never have to work and all they did was socialize, go to restaurants and museums and other various places with their friends and other associates of the same lifestyle. It is a fortunate thing to have a life where you have little to no work and can enjoy every day like it is a weekend. You don’t go to an office, you don’t commute, you don’t prepare for meetings. You’re not a housewife/husband or stay-at-home parent while your partner goes every day to bring home the bread. You are your own boss. You never have to schedule time off. You vacation when you want, sometimes months at a time. You eat out all the time. No matter how you came to this lifestyle, you are truly blessed. But . . . You have no one to share it with.
You have all this free time now, and you want to fill it with activities, hobbies, and outings, but nobody wants to do these things alone and all your friends work every day, and are too tired to do things at night.

*************************************************

Sounds great, right? But then he goes on to say:

The only people who are out there with the same availability seem to be nothing but 50 and 60 year olds, who despite having a similar schedule, you have nothing else really in common with. This group is a beacon for intelligent, fun people in their 20's and 30's who are functionally retired and at a lost to find people to connect with. You are either completely retired or work takes up only a few hours of time a week, allowing you to be free to do anything you like without a restricted schedule or budget. This doesn't mean rich or trust-fund kids, by any means. I don't have a mansion or sports cars, but I can go watch a movie on a weekday, or go to the High, or go shopping or to a gym or club.
And this is for people in their 20’s and 30’s. When I started this meetup, I used the term “young,” but I know now that such a term is ambiquious. There are some people who are 50 who still feel they are young, and rightfully so. Everyone has their own definition of young. We are by no means exclusive or limiting in membership. Anyone who wants to join can join. However, if you are 45, 55, 65 and retired, there are hundreds of groups and meet ups out there with similar aged people. For young people, 25-40, there is nothing. We will never say no to anyone who wants to join, but please make sure you are comfortable with the atmosphere you are joining. I’ve had 50 year olds who say they don’t want to hang out with people in their 70’s and 80’s, but want to spend extended time with people in their 20’s and 30’s. Activities could range from going to the theater to paintball, video games, maybe even some types of recreation extreme sports, etc. I apologize if this group sounds elitist, as I assure it is not. All races, sexual preference, and religion are welcome.
************************************************** ***
He's entitled to start any group he wants----but does he honestly think he is going to find even a handful of retirees under 40? Ironically, the first two people who joined are in their 50's (women whose husbands work). Then a 36 yo stay-at-home housewife joined. Then a 40 something self-employed woman. Then a couple of women about 35 who work, but say they have flexible schedules and are "mentally retired."


I actually think it's difficult to find people to play with during the day who are younger than 70---and this guy wants them under 40! But it definitely made me realize I am not as early a retiree as I thought---and while I think being FIREd has kept me youthful, obviously a 30 yo would disagree!
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Old 11-07-2011, 08:49 PM   #2
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He's entitled to start any group he wants----but does he honestly think he is going to find even a handful of retirees under 40? Ironically, the first two people who joined are in their 50's (women whose husbands work). Then a 36 yo stay-at-home housewife joined. Then a 40 something self-employed woman. Then a couple of women about 35 who work, but say they have flexible schedules and are "mentally retired."


I actually think it's difficult to find people to play with during the day who are younger than 70---and this guy wants them under 40! But it definitely made me realize I am not as early a retiree as I thought---and while I think being FIREd has kept me youthful, obviously a 30 yo would disagree!
Americans are great fantasists.

I have found that a lot of groups are not ageist at all. Younger people are the main resource for many of us. They may need to work, but when they are not working at least they have the energy to do something. Too many older people just like to bitch all day.

My middle aged women friends go out dancing at salsa places. There are all these young latino men who do not have women with them. What's it to one of them if the woman he is dancing with is 55? At least she is a woman. And what it is to the middle class woman if the guy she is dancing with is a laborer and hardly speaks English? At least he is young and he can dance and he is a man.

Also, many middle aged to older people who are not scrambling to live seem to have more disposable income than I do, and they like to spend it in ways that just would not appeal to me. My old roomate is always either returning from a cruise or going to one. I suppose he likes it, but to me it sounds horrible.

Ha
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Old 11-07-2011, 09:18 PM   #3
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Sounds like he's looking to start a group of trust fund babies. Good way to gather a group of people that has money and may be easy to exploit.
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Old 11-07-2011, 09:35 PM   #4
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Though I qualify age-wise and I am free to do as I please every day of the week, I would not want to be part of this group.
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Old 11-08-2011, 09:06 AM   #5
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I see the appeal of the group. I am sure I will have similar issues when I FIRE (hopefully) before age 40. Virtually everyone my age will be working or a stay at home parent. I guess we will still have young children so we will always have the networking-through-kids potential. Not sure if DW will be keen on my hanging out with a bunch of stay at home moms though .

A few years back I joined a local book club that sounded interesting. After two meetings I realized it was definitely not my thing at the time, but maybe in another 40 years . Filled with mostly women around age 70, common sidebar topics of discussion included grandchildren or great grandchildren, friends who had just died, illnesses from which they or their friends suffer, etc. Not trying to perpetuate a stereotype, just relaying what I experienced.

It would be cool to have a group of casual friends that aren't tied down during the week if I wanted to go out and do something not necessarily kid related.
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Old 11-08-2011, 09:43 AM   #6
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My middle aged women friends go out dancing at salsa places. There are all these young latino men who do not have women with them. What's it to one of them if the woman he is dancing with is 55? At least she is a woman. And what it is to the middle class woman if the guy she is dancing with is a laborer and hardly speaks English? At least he is young and he can dance and he is a man.
Good for both of them..........
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Old 11-08-2011, 09:56 AM   #7
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I guess what stopped me was his spelling errors. I am just barely enough of a grammarian to be annoyed.

But, having said that, I can see the appeal. Already my friends in the around 40 club are severely divided between the folks with kids and the childfree, as we actually have spare time and a few bucks to go out spontaneously while they are going to swim meets or whatever.

I think that the older I get, the less I care about age. If people are energetic and interested, then I'm in! But I find more and more that we are gravitating to younger and younger friends, those who have time and bandwidth for outside interests.
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Old 11-08-2011, 01:02 PM   #8
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What's the matter, does this guy not know anyone who doesn't work M-F? He doesn't need retired friends. He just needs friends who don't work in an office. There's always someone who will have the day off.
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Old 11-08-2011, 04:22 PM   #9
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I took a 5 month break between jobs in 2010. Between existing friends and new friends it was the busiest/funnest 5 months of my post college life. I had no problems meeting new people through online forums for specific to my hobbies. I'm in my 30's but I made friends with people in age ranges of 22 to 62.

I found it quite supriising, despite the bad economy, how many people had time (and money!) to do stuff any day of the week.
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Old 11-08-2011, 04:34 PM   #10
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Damn young whippersnapper!

Actually, I agree with glippy and ChadR. Although I'm in my 60s, and therefore an old fart by definition, I have friends in their 30s who are a long way from being 9-5 workers.

One owns a company (started by his father) and works hard but on his own schedule and only when needed.

Another inherited wealth and spends most of his time as a stay-at-home dad but is happy to take days or even weeks off to pursue his varied interests.

Another quit his engineer job ten years ago at about 30 years old to start his own manufacturing business, and today spends almost no time there, preferring to devote most of his effort to his hobbies while his wife tends to the business (she loves it).

There are plenty of folks in this category, I'm sure.

Although I agree with Sarah that his poor language usage is kind of off-putting.
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Old 11-08-2011, 05:00 PM   #11
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What's the matter, does this guy not know anyone who doesn't work M-F? He doesn't need retired friends. He just needs friends who don't work in an office. There's always someone who will have the day off.

Oh man, that's a scary thought. The only person I know who doesn't work M-F, is my extremely nosy neighbor who will spend hours regaling anyone who will listen about what is happening to people you've never heard about.

I think I'd rather meet up with semi-literate ageists.
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Old 11-08-2011, 05:48 PM   #12
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I think the poor guy is about ready to give up. He cancelled his first Meetup of next week. He added this:

"I realize that retired people in their 20's and 30's may be the minority of minorities, but this isn't about making a meet up with a large list of members. This is as much a support group as it is a social circle."

Hmmmm-interesting that he is looking for a support group and not just a social circle. I will admit that I had a little difficulty adjusting to ER (there, I said it!) but I'm not sure I needed a support group ("Hello, my name is Tangomonster, and I am an early retiree.").

And while I'm openly admitting embarrassing things, I actually don't think this guy writes all that badly. He misspelled ambiguous, but compared to the majority of younger people, I actually think he is fairly articulate, even if he is an age bigot! And he is very wrong---it's not like there are so many people who retired before 65. In my Baby Boomer Meetup group, the only early retirees are those who worked in some type of government job (SIREd). I wish he would introduce me to all those people in their 40s and 50s who have lots of weekday free time!
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Old 11-08-2011, 05:50 PM   #13
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Sarah and Ha, you made me feel better about my own enjoyment of being with younger people. I don't think it's a question of denying our age so much as just embracing what people have to offer---and some younger people (not all) can have more vitality than some older people (again, not all). And for those of us without kids, the younger folks at least don't have kids and grandkids who they are so focused on, to the exclusion of all else.
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Old 11-08-2011, 11:55 PM   #14
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I actually think it's difficult to find people to play with during the day who are younger than 70---and this guy wants them under 40! But it definitely made me realize I am not as early a retiree as I thought---and while I think being FIREd has kept me youthful, obviously a 30 yo would disagree!
I think this guy needs to take surfing lessons and start learning how to be responsible for his own entertainment...

There are a number of 20- and 30-somethings on EarlyRetirementExtreme, but they never seem to be at a loss for ideas on what they'll do all day.
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Old 11-09-2011, 12:11 AM   #15
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I think this guy needs to take surfing lessons and start learning how to be responsible for his own entertainment...

There are a number of 20- and 30-somethings on EarlyRetirementExtreme, but they never seem to be at a loss for ideas on what they'll do all day.
Very, very few of them are actually retired. Most just want to be.

That's one of the reasons why I prefer this forum: advice from people who have actually done it (ER'd).

Though I do find it interesting when someone doesn't know what they'd do all day. Or at least, even if they can't specify exactly what they'll do, when they can't imagine not working, because their identity is so wrapped up in their jobs. That definitely isn't a problem the ERE crowd has.
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Old 11-09-2011, 12:45 AM   #16
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"I realize that retired people in their 20's and 30's may be the minority of minorities, but this isn't about making a meet up with a large list of members. This is as much a support group as it is a social circle."

Hmmmm-interesting that he is looking for a support group and not just a social circle.
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I think this guy needs to take surfing lessons and start learning how to be responsible for his own entertainment...
When I first read the OP, my thought was "why do you need to find people to engage in activities that require little socializing?". Going to the movies or to the theater, playing video games, going to the gym, or shooting paint balls are activities that require little or no talking. So it was clear to me that socializing wasn't the main objective. I think the guy feels lonely but given the fact that he only wants to meet young, fun, intelligent, functionally retired people, it's no wonder. He sounds a bit full of himself and high maintenance if you ask me and that's why I wouldn't want to be part of this group.
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Old 11-10-2011, 09:27 AM   #17
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A few years back I joined a local book club that sounded interesting...
You need to find a drinking club with a reading problem...
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