Hank may have been on to something…….

Doggin’ logs.  Finishing Sal’s boat.  Fixing the sailing dinghy.  Helping a real estate deal get done.  Preparing for the season’s first woofers next week.  Startin’ the garden.  Consulting on a mediation.  Lookin’ for a new boat or at least a new boat design that I can easily build.  Planning the new work shed.  Schlepin’ in windows and skylights for it. Getting some more stuff done on the funicular.  Contemplating the pile of logs gathered at the beach and…….well…..that is only about the half of it!  There is so much more!

I can’t honestly say that I work harder now that I am retired because I work at my own pace and, because of that, things just don’t get done as quickly.  And I do enjoy doing them more, which is nice.  So work piles up and I just look really busy. “Image is everything!” (Andre Agassi)

When I worked for or with others, the pace was quicker and the work less fun.  Had to be.  Time is money!

Now no one will work with me so I get to set the pace.  A plethora of riches but without the money.  Ironic, eh?

I remember distinctly hearing: “If you want something done, ask a busy person to do it!”  And it is true. Sal gets stuff done.  Because I can pace myself, well, I pace myself………the truth: I have a lot of things to do but I am not that busy doing them.

I’ll have to get them woofers on it.

I’d like to use the excuse that I am gettin’ on.  But Sal’s dad, who is 88, does twice as much around the house.  So do a lot of old guys.  Met a guy the other day who is older than I am by four or so years and he was heading up the coast to rebuild a crumbling dock!  That involves huge creosoted beams.  I don’t think I can deny it, I am soft.  Round people often are.  Maybe I should have been a chef?

Actually, I am still somewhat busy.  Just not as busy as I should be, I guess.


The best part of my day is writing the blog.  I just sit down and ‘kill an hour’.  It’s fun.  I also read for about two hours every day.  Maybe three.  Amazing how many books you can get through with a reading time allocated.  I get through two ‘heavy’ books a week and often two light ones as well.

‘Course my retention level is waning.  The books blur into one another.  That is not so good.  I am basically attracted to social trends, politics and economics.  The not-so-recent economic crisis of 2007/08 has spawned a lot of post analytical financial books and they are fascinating to me.  Ooohh, I know so much more about liars and cheaters and greedy pigs and how the system is designed to breed more. 

You have to wonder if that is not akin to some kind of porn fetish, eh?

But it has occurred to me: I could be barking up the wrong tree.

Henry David Thoreau wrote Walden; or Life in the Woods.  Somehow he knew of the difference between living and existing for trivial pursuits.   Pacing myself is living properly.  So, that’s good.  Some of the pursuits, however, may be trivial (skylights in the new workshop?).  I am going to have to read Walden again.

The authors of the books I read, however, seem to have missed the essential point of living altogether.  And those they write about are actually heavily invested in the opposite.  A lot of people are.  Maybe we should all read Walden again.

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms, and, if it proved to be mean, why then to get the whole and genuine meanness of it, and publish its meanness to the world; or if it were sublime, to know it by experience, and be able to give a true account of it in my next excursion.”

2 thoughts on “Hank may have been on to something…….

  1. Yeah, but discontent is based in part on an awareness of better things. He had the awareness. So many do not. And, anyway, circumstances don’t always cooperate. But they did for him at Walden. So he got close. For a while. Me? Content? Not really. I am much more content than I have ever been but I am aware that some things could be better (the $#@%$#@! damn funicular extension for instance) and so there is still some discontent or, maybe better put, some wanting. HDT reduced his wanting to Spartan levels (at Walden). I have a bit of trouble with that. I don’t think sacrifice is necessary. But simple is.


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