The days of yore

Have you noticed how serious everybody is these days. “Land’s sake” my ol’ mama used to say. I haven’t a clue what that means, but the saying seems to apply here. When both my kids finished college I begged them to go play. Take a little time off. You’ve been in school your whole life. Life these days is like dealing with a swarm of bees. Soon enough you’ll be saddled with a spouse, mortgages, babies, car payments, telemarketing phone calls just as you sit down for dinner, etc. Not one taker did I have. Both informed me that they had to be “responsible.” Responsible’ One can be responsible later . . . go play a little. No dice said they, time’s a wastin’. We’ve got to start building up our 401(k) plan for retirement. Retirement’ Gad – you’re in your 20’s . . . retirement is a long time away. What’s the matter with $2,000.00 per year in an IRA account and forget war room retirement plans for awhile. In today’s dollars, if one starts at age 25 with an IRA account (earning 11% per annum), when one retires at age 65 the IRA will be worth $1.4 million. That’s sort of a nice little cushion to fall back on in later years. You can play and plan for your retirement at the same time. When you finally quit playing so much you can enter into your maximum wage earning years and knock ’em dead with a “settle in the south of France” retirement package. Should this fail you’ll always have your measly $1.4 million IRA to fall back on. Whoever ‘they’ is say Americans now hold the prestigious honor of working more hours per week than anyone else in the world. Isn’t that nice . . .. what an honor. ‘They’ also say that Americans are now taking less and less vacation time. No one, it seems, ever takes his two weeks any more. When I was a kid the rage was wingtip shoes or blue blazers. Now rage has to do with road rage or air rage. Lots of people live in a pressure cooker world these days and it seems to be contagious. Remember carpe diem’ Seize the day . . . enjoy the present. What ever happened to that’ All we hear in the news is what’s bad for us. Don’t smoke, don’t drink, don’t drive without your seat belt, don’t have any fun, don’t, don’t. . .. This is all great if you want to go completely nuts. We all need to have a release valve or we’ll explode. So, does this mean that in 20 years 350,000,000 Americans are all going to explode at the same time’ Luckily I live way up in the middle of nowhere and will only hear the explosions from a far. The good news is that they will be very rich explosions. Think of the grand funerals the 401(k) kids will all be able to afford. It’ll be the first time in years the poor devils will be able to lie down and get a little rest, plus it’ll help solve the over population problem. I suppose, now that I think about it, it’s not a bad deal. Go ahead you guys, work yourselves into a frenzy, have no fun at all and no matter what ‘do not ever do anything that would even resemble reckless abandon. Never, ever throw caution to the wind. Impulsive’ Carefree’ Forget about it! John Stewart was an original member of the Kingston Trio. Later he ventured out as a solo artist. A really beautiful song he released in the early 70’s was titled July You’re a Woman. John’s introduction to the song began thusly: “I want you to picture yourselves out on the highway, it’s along about dusk’six pack of Coors next to you . . . feeling kind of mellow, got the radio on: ‘Sunshine on my shoulder, makes me sweaty.’ Off to the side of the road – you see – a little figure, suitcase by her side with a sign that reads simply: ‘Please’. You fishtail across four lanes of highway’coming to a halt, you give it your best Robert Redford. ‘Hey Honey, where ya’ goin’ ‘ ‘Seattle Mister, where’re you going’ ‘Well hell, I was goin’ to the store for cigarettes but I’ll go to Seattle if ya’ want.'” That was the attitude of the day. Quite frankly I miss it a lot. Mickey Smith lives on a 7200′ mesa in the high mountain desert country of west central ColoradHave you noticed how serious everybody is these days. “Land’s sake” my ol’ mama used to say. I haven’t a clue what that means, but the saying seems to apply here. When both my kids finished college I begged them to go play. Take a little time off. You’ve been in school your whole life. Life these days is like dealing with a swarm of bees. Soon enough you’ll be saddled with a spouse, mortgages, babies, car payments, telemarketing phone calls just as you sit down for dinner, etc. Not one taker did I have. Both informed me that they had to be “responsible.” Responsible’ One can be responsible later . . . go play a little. No dice said they, time’s a wastin’. We’ve got to start building up our 401(k) plan for retirement. Retirement’ Gad – you’re in your 20’s . . . retirement is a long time away. What’s the matter with $2,000.00 per year in an IRA account and forget war room retirement plans for awhile. In today’s dollars, if one starts at age 25 with an IRA account (earning 11% per annum), when one retires at age 65 the IRA will be worth $1.4 million. That’s sort of a nice little cushion to fall back on in later years. You can play and plan for your retirement at the same time. When you finally quit playing so much you can enter into your maximum wage earning years and knock ’em dead with a “settle in the south of France” retirement package. Should this fail you’ll always have your measly $1.4 million IRA to fall back on. Whoever ‘they’ is say Americans now hold the prestigious honor of working more hours per week than anyone else in the world. Isn’t that nice . . .. what an honor. ‘They’ also say that Americans are now taking less and less vacation time. No one, it seems, ever takes his two weeks any more. When I was a kid the rage was wingtip shoes or blue blazers. Now rage has to do with road rage or air rage. Lots of people live in a pressure cooker world these days and it seems to be contagious. Remember carpe diem’ Seize the day . . . enjoy the present. What ever happened to that’ All we hear in the news is what’s bad for us. Don’t smoke, don’t drink, don’t drive without your seat belt, don’t have any fun, don’t, don’t. . .. This is all great if you want to go completely nuts. We all need to have a release valve or we’ll explode. So, does this mean that in 20 years 350,000,000 Americans are all going to explode at the same time’ Luckily I live way up in the middle of nowhere and will only hear the explosions from a far. The good news is that they will be very rich explosions. Think of the grand funerals the 401(k) kids will all be able to afford. It’ll be the first time in years the poor devils will be able to lie down and get a little rest, plus it’ll help solve the over population problem. I suppose, now that I think about it, it’s not a bad deal. Go ahead you guys, work yourselves into a frenzy, have no fun at all and no matter what ‘do not ever do anything that would even resemble reckless abandon. Never, ever throw caution to the wind. Impulsive’ Carefree’ Forget about it! John Stewart was an original member of the Kingston Trio. Later he ventured out as a solo artist. A really beautiful song he released in the early 70’s was titled July You’re a Woman. John’s introduction to the song began thusly: “I want you to picture yourselves out on the highway, it’s along about dusk’six pack of Coors next to you . . . feeling kind of mellow, got the radio on: ‘Sunshine on my shoulder, makes me sweaty.’ Off to the side of the road – you see – a little figure, suitcase by her side with a sign that reads simply: ‘Please’. You fishtail across four lanes of highway’coming to a halt, you give it your best Robert Redford. ‘Hey Honey, where ya’ goin’ ‘ ‘Seattle Mister, where’re you going’ ‘Well hell, I was goin’ to the store for cigarettes but I’ll go to Seattle if ya’ want.'” That was the attitude of the day. Quite frankly I miss it a lot. Mickey Smith lives on a 7200′ mesa in the high mountain desert country of west central Colorado. He’s lived on the edge and lived to write about it: Just yesterday he rode in his car and didn’t use his seat belt. o. He’s lived on the edge and lived to write about it: Just yesterday he rode in his car and didn’t use his seat belt.

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