They tell me that I am retired, although, truth be known, this week hasn't felt like any other first week of summer vacation. Perhaps when school starts back I will notice a difference. When is that? Around the Fourth of July?
Naturally, if I stay retired, I will have to find something else to do. I couldn't possibly sit around the house -- especially on days that my lovely wife Lisa is home from work. If you think your job is hard just try staying home with my wife for eight hours. She is a stern taskmaster and working in the Osprey Mill was nothing compared to keeping up with her honey-do list on a daily basis.
It is almost as bad when she is not here. I knew it was a bad idea having those surveillance cameras installed. She claimed they were designed to catch intruders but the main camera is pointed at my recliner. I am pretty sure that she has a direct feed to her iPhone because every time I decide to take a load off and rest during the day she sends me a text with another "suggestion" about something I "could be doing" around the house.
Plus I need to make a little extra money. Georgia has a good teacher retirement plan, but staying home doesn't pay as much as working and y'all know how things are these days. Everything is high and prices are continuing to climb.
I spent Monday trying to decide what I might best do with my extra time. All I have to do right now is finish three books by September, write four columns and make three speaking engagements a week and memorize Georgia's depth chart for the coming football season. I still have at least three or four hours every other day that are unaccounted for. An idle mind is the devil's workshop! Got to get up and get busy.
But in my next career I want to find something a little more financially lucrative than teaching school -- and maybe something that is not quite as stressful. Laugh if you must, but educating young people is hard work if done properly.
Tommy Lee McCurdy told me that when he retired, he got a part-time job delivering and picking up cars. Now that might work. I have a pretty good driving record -- at least if you don't count those teenage years back in the 1960s when I thought I was Richard Petty. I can read a map and I don't mind being alone with my thoughts.
On the down side, they might want me to drive a car up north and I don't do well in places where sweet tea and buttered grits are not readily available.
I decided to look in the help wanted section of Tuesday's paper and see what I could find. I couldn't believe my eyes. There were only three postings for jobs. Three! Those people who complain that nobody's hiring ain't just whistling "Dixie."
One of those jobs was for child care -- which is what I just retired from, basically. One was for a dietician, but I don't think I could get by serving folks a steady diet of grilled meat and chicken fried in lard. The other ad was for an employment agency that claims to have 140 positions open, but I read their listings and all their jobs sounded too much like work.
What to do, what to do?
Disillusioned with the want ads, I turned back to the front page of the paper and the answer to my dilemma was staring me right in the face. My new job will be to sue everybody who ever hurt my feelings by making anonymous comments about me in the newspaper. It will be perfect. I can work from home. There will be no heavy lifting and I will make a fortune because folks are all time saying ugly things about what I write in the paper.
Just last week someone said, "I don't agree with your opinion," and another person said that I was "still living in the 20th century" and another person said that I shouldn't be allowed to teach because I was always bashing Obama in my newspaper columns.
There you go! Instead of shrugging these things off and saying "I'm glad I wasn't trying to write your opinion," or "I wish I were still living in the 20th century" or "you've never been in my classroom, so you don't know what I teach," I can hire a lawyer and file against those folks.
I can charge them with being slanderous and malicious and claim that they were making false statements about me and exposing me to hatred and contempt and public ridicule. I bet I'll make a fortune and then I can afford to hire someone to take care of Lisa's honey-do list and get the whole community talking about me.
On second thought, I'd better just lay low and enjoy retirement. The trouble with stirring up a hornets' nest is that sometimes you are the one that gets stung -- and I might be allergic.
And if Lisa's demands get too bad, I can always beg for my old job back.Darrell Huckaby is a local educator and author. Email him at email@example.com. For past columns, visit www.rockdalecitizen.com or www.newtoncitizen.com.