15 March 2006

How Much For The Gall Bladder?

...and apparently if I save 35% of my income from now until retirement,
I'll be just that!


Okay, so I finally figured out how I'm gonna die. Starvation. Here's why.

I don't know about you, but I sometimes like to torture myself with the knowledge that I have no real skills and am tripping, nay, barrelling toward doom with every passing day. All it takes is a tiny market fluctuation to give me an Eskimo-blanket-style toss right out of the job market and back to living in a Ford Maverick. That's what I get for being a writer, I guess. Everyone likes writers, but nobody needs 'em. And I know that you can relate because you made most of your career out of being a musician. Musicians and writers have pretty much the same retirement plan. Which is none. In lieu of retirement at age 65, here's what I see as the options for people like us: #1) Eat a bullet. #2) Take the gas pipe. #3) Armed burglary, followed by conviction, followed by 25 years of three squares a day served in your very own room, followed by carrying out #1 or #2 in a dank halfway house in Des Moines, Iowa. 4) Teach, followed by #1 or #2. (I'd love to teach, but being somewhat short of a degree in education, I don't think anyone is going to accept my qualifications as an itinerant dilletante.) Or #5) Participate in Great Britain's Arse for Shillings program headquartered at the docks in Liverpool (which, in and of itself is a retirement plan, if only a retirement of one's morals).

Why the glum ruminations? I just got done using the retirement calculator on the Vanguard website and it's telling me that I'm gonna have to save up $3.5 million in the next 25 years in order to retire. Which brings me to my next question. Is it possible to sell your organs to science while you're still alive? I'm not talking about signing up for medical experiments. I mean something like - oh I don't know - selling your gall bladder to the Chinese, or selling your venom glands to the Malaysians. If you could do that, you'd make a ton of dough in the short run and probably save at least one member of an endangered species to boot. And if I can't sell my whole gall bladder because it turns out that I need it for something, do you suppose I might be able to shave bits off of it and sell those? It'll grow back, right?

Another thing occurred to me and that is there is another direction to go with this whole retirement thing. Instead of amassing property and capital, one could reasonably de-mass property and capital. For instance, if I got rid of the six-acre apartment, the dog sitter, the housekeeper, the solid-gold 500 mph T1 line, the satellite, and the luxury of being able to urinate indoors, I bet I could save a wad. Let's see, if I add all the - (...that's sixteen thirty eight plus fifty five...carry the twelve...subtract pi...add overhead...subtract underpants...divide overcoats...subtract the other pi...) - crap, that'll never work. That's only a savings of something like eighty quid nine shillings tuppence a month. Maybe if I had a skill, I might even be able to throw myself a yurt on a potter's wheel using common garden clay.

If you have any great retirement schemes, I would be glad to hear 'em. I'm not above breaking the law (depending on which law, of course) or dipping my hand into the Republican money stream - which, come to think of it, is probably breaking the law.

Cheers, and give my best to Marie.



Zen Wizard said...

No suggestions--but Meow Mix comes out with new flavors all the time, so someday one of them will maybe taste good.

Kim said...

Mmmm Meox Mix, good stuff. Oh wait, I'm supposed to eat this stuff AFTER retirement?

Andy A said...

Meow Mix? Luxury! When I retire I’ll be glad to eat half a handful of freezing cold gravel before I go sleep in the lake.

muff-a-lar said...

I suppose Meow Mix would be more delicious and more nutritious than beaks and speens or claws and wattles any day.

T K Wilson said...

You could always plant Ginseng in MO.
The Chinese buy 95% of all Ginseng produced in the US (and sell quite a bit back to us???) and pay upwards of $400 per lb for the privelige.
I figure I'll still be able to crawl around on my hands and knees in the woods when I'm 95, pulling the little darlings up.
I've got several plots already planted and we planted 9 flats (that's 324 little pots with half a dozen plants apiece)yesterday because the extra seeds I had were sprouting in the fridge.

Beats fucking cat food for breakfast.
Well, I guess you could feed it to the cats and then...
Hear it tastes just like chicken.