Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Should I?

Here's the quandary:

Should I stay in Tennessee and keep working in a menial but lucrative job at a GM plant that will almost definitely close in the next 4-5 years leaving me stuck scrambling for a job AGAIN but this time with no relocation or opportunities...


Should I sell everything I own, house and cars included, and take a low paying job in Costa Rica that I know I am perfect for and I am far more likely to enjoy than the hellhole of pay-cuts and unhappy coworkers I currently endure?

It's a bit like jumping off a cliff, sincerely believing that I can fly. There's uncertainty in every direction. I'm incredibly lucky to actually have options in today's world. What seemed like a stable and happy situation in Tennessee has turned into another quagmire of questionable oncoming situations. Or am I imagining a future more grim than will actually occur?

If things were just barely, slightly, the tiniest bit worse here, the decision would be easy. The opportunity is real, and it looks like an amazing life. But it's an adventure, and it will require a great deal of sacrifice and hard work. I'm in my 40s now. Am I getting too old to be this adventurous? I don't feel like I am, but am I blind to my own age and limitations?

At any rate, my world and imagination are alive with possibilities and opportunities, and I'm loving it, even if the answers terrify me.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Death Party

grim reaperA coworker of mine had to leave early yesterday to attend a funeral. It was the wife of a friend of his who died from cancer at the age of forty. Having just celebrated crossed my forty-first birthday, I took note.

My coworker returned to work today and said that the funeral had been totally arranged by the woman who died. Previous to her death (last Friday) she had arranged for all the songs to be played, and even wrote a statement to be read to the people attending the funeral. Her final wishes were for the people at the funeral to remember her and to help her husband take care of her children. It sounded very sad. I don't know the woman at all, but the whole thing sounds depressing, preparing for your death because you pretty much know the exact date of its occurrence.

A couple of years ago my parents brought me a slideshow that was shown at the funeral of my aunt. When I was 18 I left home for college and she was my nearest relative. She was a very assertive and opinionated lady, in a hilarious way. I wasn't fond of her children, but I loved her like crazy. She suffered from "Pick's disease" also known as Frontotemporal Dementia. Basically your brain degenerates, especially affecting your social behavior. It is easily the most horrible way to go. First you lose your mind, then your ability to care for yourself, then you die.

The slideshow was horrible. It began with pictures from her childhood and progressed through her life. But the pictures from the end of her life showed a completely different person. Definitely not the woman I knew when I was growing up. It might have been wise to cut those pictures from the presentation, but then there would have been none of her with her great-grandchildren.

My aunt obviously had no input into the composition of the slide show. If she could have decided 30 years ago I guarantee you she would not have wanted people to see her in those final few years when she had no idea what was happening. But at least she didn't have to suffer through the depressing and frightening experience of preparing her own funeral.

I'm not sure what the best way to go is right now. All I can come up with at this moment is "hit by a bus." Surely there's something better?

Monday, March 09, 2009

I've Got Wood.

My house has beautiful hardwood floors, except the bedrooms. I've never understood this. I hate carpet. Carpet only does two things well, collect dirt and keep stains. I don't like carpet on my floors and I don't like carpet on the ladies (if ya know what I mean.)

So, after practicing on several of my friends' homes, I took the plunge and removed the carpet from the master bedroom and installed hardwood flooring. I also took the opportunity to replace a couple of pieces of inherited furniture with some brand-new never previously owned pieces, a couple of chest-of-drawers.

new floor and furn

I haven't done two of the doorways yet, including the one into the closet in the picture because I need to get a carpet reducer and the Lowes/Home Depot is a half hour drive from the tiny town I live in.

It was a long hard weekend, first tearing out the old nasty stuff and repairing the damage and then putting in the new floor and moving in the new furniture. But it was so worth it, the room looks beautiful now.

Now when GM goes out of business I'll have a skill to fall back on.

Monday, March 02, 2009

US lawmaker to push to repeal online gambling ban

By Doug Palmer

WASHINGTON, Feb 20 (Reuters) - A senior Democratic lawmaker will push legislation this year to repeal a U.S. ban on Internet gambling that has hurt trade ties with the European Union, a congressional aide said.

"The bill introduction should happen in the next month," a spokesman for House of Representatives Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank said.

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