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Old 05-15-2011, 11:53 AM   #41
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If they ask what do you do all day, I simply tell them, anything I want.
The underlying theme of ER.
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Old 05-15-2011, 01:11 PM   #42
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Well, I am hoping to "semi-retire" in June 2011. I am fortunate to be in profession where as a self-employed person I can work at little as 5 hrs a week, or as much as 70 hrs a week. So, here's to being semi-retired at the end of next month.

Now, here is the interesting part, I have actually not told anyone other than DW (we have been planning for this for 9 years), that I will be drastically cutting down on work effective June 2011. DW is a school teacher who has been working at 80% schedule (school teacher) for last 4 years already. She plans on continuing that same 80% (or go down to 60%) schedule for the time being.

Having put in 60-70 hr per week for the last nine years at my own small business, I am very excited to see what new things await the next phase of our life.

This is my first post and I look forward to participating and learning in this wonderful forum.

Greetings to All.
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Old 07-15-2011, 02:17 PM   #43
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I've run into three kinds of people:

1) "How is it possible?" people. It doesn't matter how much they earn. Folks 10 years my senior, making high six and low seven figure salaries for a couple of decades, have asked me how I could possibly afford to leave work. Another told me, very sternly, that I should keep working so I can 'retire for real' someday - presumably to a rocking chair. These people tend to be the most openly hostile. While they think they'd like to do the same thing they ultimately aren't willing to make any sacrifices. They often wrongly assume that I haven't sacrificed either.

2) Puritanical work ethic people. Some have told me that work is a virtue. When I ask how working in finance, which produces no visible good to society - in pursuit of ever large piles of cash and things, is virtuous I'm always met with blank stares. I think there is an intuitive feeling among some people that suffering is good for your character. When I promise them I'll self flagellate instead of returning to work it doesn't seem to satisfy them, though.

3) "What will you do all day?" people. Some people can't imagine life without an overlord telling them how to spend their hours. They're not caught in the Matrix, they want to be there. They can't understand why anyone would ever leave.

One of the things I learned in college is that most of the great 'Romantic' poets, those who advanced the idea of breaking with societal norms, died early and miserably. Going your own way is hard, and standing out from the crowd often makes you a target. Your mere existence calls into question what everyone else takes as a matter of faith. It's not a path for everyone. And those who walk it should expect to be especially thick-skinned.
I've been retired for 2 years now and currently 55 years old. In the last week I've had at least 2 people ask me "What do you do all day?". I don't know if these people are asking me because they're envious and can't afford to do the same, worried about me or simply can't fathom the idea of retiring early. I'm getting to the point where I feel like I have to defend my decision to retire early. I'm starting to get tired of that question and dread having to deal with it. What comebacks does anyone else use that ends this stupid conversation quickly? Are there any other threads here that deal with this subject that you know of?
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Old 07-15-2011, 02:24 PM   #44
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I'm starting to get tired of that question and dread having to deal with it. What comebacks does anyone else use that ends this stupid conversation quickly? Are there any other threads here that deal with this subject that you know of?
Do you have a problem with telling them what you do all day? Why not simply tell the truth?

"I walk the dog in the morning, contemplate my navel, then walk the dog in the evening. Oh, I also eat and sleep."
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Old 07-15-2011, 02:26 PM   #45
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I'm getting to the point where I feel like I have to defend my decision to retire early. I'm starting to get tired of that question and dread having to deal with it. What comebacks does anyone else use that ends this stupid conversation quickly?
When I retired early I lived just outside a small town. I actually had people confront me with this selfish decision, in the supermarket or feed store. It got less frequent as I got older, and as more early retirees from California and elsewhere moved into this very scenic place. The overal cure for it is age, but today even at 70 people's default assumption is that I am working. To me this is not hard to explain. People feel more kinship to those with whom they share more experience. If 10 guys start their day with acid stomachs, and the 11th sleeps till he wakes up and goes out to sit on the deck, he is kind of an odd man out and will not be as likely to be accepted as one of the guys. This causes no resentment of struggle in me, as I realize that I would likely feel the same way

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Old 07-15-2011, 02:32 PM   #46
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Do you have a problem with telling them what you do all day? Why not simply tell the truth?

"I walk the dog in the morning, contemplate my navel, then walk the dog in the evening. Oh, I also eat and sleep."
Yeah, I guess you're right....I'll just tell them that on many days I do a workout in the morning and then little or nothing after that and then let them respond. Sometimes I actually tell them that everyday is Saturday for me...I think they can relate to that.
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Old 07-15-2011, 02:37 PM   #47
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I'm starting to get tired of that question and dread having to deal with it. What comebacks does anyone else use that ends this stupid conversation quickly? Are there any other threads here that deal with this subject that you know of?
Don't worry DallasGuy - another year or so of retirement and you'll be so relaxed and happy that you won't be bothered by this kind of stuff. Agree with LOL! - when they ask, just tell 'em what you do.
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Old 07-15-2011, 02:54 PM   #48
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Do you have a problem with telling them what you do all day? Why not simply tell the truth?

"I walk the dog in the morning, contemplate my navel, then walk the dog in the evening. Oh, I also eat and sleep."
I tried this a few times but it started to irritate me. After all, every day is different and I don't feel inclined to have to account for my time. Did this for 35 years when working. I rather like the response " only what I want" instead.
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Old 07-15-2011, 03:03 PM   #49
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I've been retired for 2 years now and currently 55 years old. In the last week I've had at least 2 people ask me "What do you do all day?". I don't know if these people are asking me because they're envious and can't afford to do the same, worried about me or simply can't fathom the idea of retiring early. I'm getting to the point where I feel like I have to defend my decision to retire early. I'm starting to get tired of that question and dread having to deal with it. What comebacks does anyone else use that ends this stupid conversation quickly? Are there any other threads here that deal with this subject that you know of?
The space titled "Occupation" on my new Google+ profile reads "I build radios with my kitty". If and when the main thrust of my life changes, I will change the description to match.
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Old 07-15-2011, 03:05 PM   #50
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The space titled "Occupation" on my new Google+ profile reads "I build radios with my kitty".
I can't speak for anyone else, but that might possibly make you sound like someone I would avoid, and I don't know why, exactly.
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Old 07-15-2011, 03:17 PM   #51
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I can't speak for anyone else, but that might possibly make you sound like someone I would avoid, and I don't know why, exactly.
Hmmm...I'm not quite sure how to respond to that. I guess it does sound a bit strange in an undefinable way.

A more literal description would be that I build the electronic gizmos and my kitty eats, sleeps and plays - mostly sleeps. She's great company though
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Old 07-15-2011, 03:18 PM   #52
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I got it - it's the Dr Evil and cat association!
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Old 07-15-2011, 03:38 PM   #53
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What comebacks does anyone else use that ends this stupid conversation quickly?
How about:
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Probably the same things you do when you're not at w*rk.
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Old 07-15-2011, 03:40 PM   #54
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Perfect braumeister.
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Old 07-15-2011, 03:44 PM   #55
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Hmmm...I'm not quite sure how to respond to that. I guess it does sound a bit strange in an undefinable way.

A more literal description would be that I build the electronic gizmos and my kitty eats, sleeps and plays - mostly sleeps. She's great company though
Oh, good to know! I was wondering what part of your cat you used for the antenna.
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Old 07-15-2011, 04:18 PM   #56
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but today even at 70 people's default assumption is that I am working
I'm guessing part of it also is you look much younger than 70 since you haven't had w*rk-related stress since ER
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Old 07-15-2011, 04:32 PM   #57
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You got it-I was envisioning that you were building radios out of parts of your cat! . But mostly I was kidding!
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Old 07-15-2011, 04:43 PM   #58
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Oh, good to know! I was wondering what part of your cat you used for the antenna.
Well, when she's struttin' around, that tail does stick up awful high.....you're giving me ideas now

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You got it-I was envisioning that you were building radios out of parts of your cat! . But mostly I was kidding!
I hadn't even thought of that interpretation when posting, but it is rather macabre

Oh now I feel bad - she's such a complete sweetheart, I feel bad for even joking about this!
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Old 07-15-2011, 05:21 PM   #59
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You got it-I was envisioning that you were building radios out of parts of your cat! . But mostly I was kidding!
Why should that be strange?

Cat's-whisker detector - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 07-15-2011, 05:23 PM   #60
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*Looks at his kitty with glee and rubs hands together*

"Here kitty, kitty!"
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