SHHH. DON’T TELL ANYONE, but I’ve finagled this deal where I don’t have to go to work anymore, and the government sends me cash.
I feel a bit like one of those North Dakota farmers getting paid to not plant soybeans.
Yes, my first Social Security payment showed up in our credit-union account today. It’s kind of like magic. You don’t even have to watch the mailbox anymore.
Of course, I’m only 62, so “the check” is not as much as if I’d waited a few more years to my “official retirement age” of 66 and 4 months. And it would be even more if I had waited until I was 70 as they try to say you should. (Ha! Good luck convincing Baby Boomers that’s a good idea.) I’ve heard from many others in the Younger Geezer Set, of which I’m now a proud member, who say it’s worth retiring as early as you can because nobody wants to be that guy who retires at 72 and three days later blows a gasket, or slips all his discs, or steps in front of a bus. It happens.
Another exciting step into the future: My dear wife cut my hair today. It’s sort of a double whammy iconic event, signifying that (A) we don’t live anywhere near a barber shop anymore, and (B) we’re on a budget, also known as the dreaded Fixed Income. (That Social Security payment was close to equaling the net pay I got from The Seattle Times twice a month. Only this will come only once a month. Hmm. Good thing we both have pensions as well.)
The haircut was accomplished outside on our deck so the hair wouldn’t get all over the floor like it does at Supercuts. Barbara had prepared by getting a book on how to cut hair, and she got some really sharp professional-style hair-cutting scissors. It was a big step up from a few decades ago when I tried cutting my own hair using a device advertised on TV that was essentially a razor blade inserted inside a comb. It didn’t so much cut your hair as pull it out by the roots. It was akin to trying to shave using one of those serrated metal cutting strips off a box of aluminum foil. (Come to think of it, my older sister gave me a “shave” — just like Dad! — using one of those serrated strips when I was about 5. You can still see the scar on my face if you peer hard enough.)
But Barbara does good work. And this way she gets to decide how long my hair should be. (She always thought I got it cut too short.) So far, I am resisting all suggestions of a man bun.