679 What, Again?
Retiring at the end of the week, and it's a second go at a life of leisure. Something says it's not going to be so leisurely. The first bout certainly wasn't. Join the gym. Take a trip. Sleep late. Get the ceiling fixed -- finally! Make appointments whenever instead of bending the calendar around the work schedule. Sounds great, right?
Thing is, some of us get our senses of self from a job -- especially when the job is an art -- even a commercial art like broadcasting. Work is what we DO, what we ARE. Especially those of us who love to work so much that we started early, really early. Imagine a kid who couldn't wait to be old enough to trudge down to the Queens Boulevard White Castle parking lot on an early Sunday afternoon to wash cars for the folks coming out of the late Mass down the street? How many million years ago was that?
That car wash kid covered his first election in 1965 as a fledgling reporter. Then it was county courts and government, local auto crashes and train crashes and sewer scandals. And then it was Vietnam and Watergate. And the never ending middle east war. And the never ending Presidential elections. Nicaragua. Lockerbie. The Berlin Wall. Somalia. Yugoslavia. OJ. The Olympic bombing. And 9/11. Now what?
Not to mislead you, many of those major events -- but not all -- were reporting from a desk in a Manhattan newsroom. But nevertheless, those were some of the landmark stories. But the question remains: now what?
The first retirement lasted a couple of years. Then it was back on the air with a little talk show in a little place. Broadcasters can't keep their mouths shut. This blog is close to its fifth anniversary and will go on. But the little radio program dies at week's end. Scary. And this question remains: "Who am I without this stuff?"
Guess we'll find out. The answer the first time was "not enough."
--The tax form again this year lets you donate to public campaign financing. Are you kidding? After the Supreme Court decision on political advertising, your pipsqueak few bucks will mean absolutely nothing -- if it ever did.
--Fast Food Mini Review, Wendy's new "bacon & blue." For a bacon and bleu cheese lover, this was a rubbery dud, to be as kind as possible, with the bacon burned to a crisp and the cheese crumbles tasteless and with the appearance of fish eggs. Calories 680, Sodium 1390 mg., fat 40 gr, taste: 0. Dave Thomas is twirling in his grave.
--Immediately after this gourmet feast, it was a trip to the supermarket and the purchase of two boxes of White Castle cheesburgers. At least with those, the expectations are low and so is the price. Plus if you're having bathroom trouble, they'll solve it for you, because they don't call 'em "sliders" for nothing.
I'm Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you're welcome to them.®