Tuesday, June 20, 2017
There's a party.
There's a bowl of mixed nuts.
Some people have a sampling of the various types and maybe have an extra two of their favourite.
Some people stand a the bowl and munch down on the cashews until there are none left.
I've never understood the second type of person. To me they exemplify why there is such financial and other inequality in the world.
Sunday, June 18, 2017
Friday, June 9, 2017
I remember a long weekend early one summer, many years ago, when I was a university student and my parents were away for a long weekend and I was staying at their house looking after their pets.
I was starting a summer job on the Tuesday and I was thoroughly enjoying my three days of solitude and peace. My parents lived in the country and there were no neighbours nearby and no one was running a tractor or cutting wood. Just the sounds of nature.
On one of those sunny mild afternoons I was sitting on the back deck with the dogs and I experienced such a feeling of contentment and presence. I just wanted to stay there like that forever.
All through my life I have been most contented when I've been able to be by myself, somewhere peaceful, not trying to do or be anything or get anywhere. Just being.
Which is one reason I love retirement so much - it gives me many more opportunities for that kind of moment.
Friday, June 2, 2017
Years ago when I was a student one person introduced several of us to the works of Ayn Rand.
Whatever one thinks of her ideas she was an compelling and persuasive writer and all of us were at least intrigued by what she had to say.
One friend said, "That's all very interesting but I can't live that way, that's not the kind of person I want to be."
That was such a moment of clarity, and I thought, "Yes, exactly, you're right."
Thursday, May 25, 2017
Many years ago at work we were being given a retroactive pay increase and getting a nice amount of money in a single cheque.
I was saying to a colleague that I might use that money to buy a new colour television (this was back when black and white TVs were still common).
She didn't think that was necessarily the best use to make of the windfall. Whenever she got unexpected money she put it into savings. If she wanted something like a colour TV she started setting aside a bit of money each payday until she had what she needed to buy it for cash.
Although I grew up with parents who always waited until they could pay cash for discretionary items (and had always stressed saving part of income) this sensible idea of how to use unexpected money was new to me.
I did put that retroactive cheque into savings and it's a policy that I have followed ever since and it has served me well.