Friday, December 15, 2017

From Bored . . . to The Front Bottoms

     A well-known pitfall of retirement is boredom. We have no children to take care of. No job to go to. In some ways we lead parallel lives to the rest of the community, as we go about our business and they go about theirs. B and I went to the annual meeting of the Center for Learning in Retirement the other day -- our business -- then yesterday B attended lunch at the Encore club, for women over age 60. Meanwhile, they are taking their kids to school, going to visit Santa at the mall, putting lots of presents under the tree.

Our new wallpaper
     Actually, I have not been bored so much as I feel as though I've been leading a boring life. There's a difference. I've been keeping busy, so I'm not bored. But I haven't been doing anything the slightest bit interesting -- running errands, buying presents, making trips to UPS and the post office, arranging travel plans for after the new year. In other words, I've either been sitting at my desk or driving around in my car.

     We are renovating our downstairs powder room. We spent way too much time in the past two weeks picking out a new tile for the floor, and even more time selecting just the right vanity and sinktop and faucet. Yesterday we went shopping for wallpaper, because we think wallpaper will give our tiny otherwise-unremarkable bathroom a bit of a . . . as B puts it, "wow" factor.

     Just so you know, while B seems to have some interest in wallpaper -- as well as a new window shade for our bedroom (I didn't even know we needed a new shade) -- I consider shopping for wallpaper a boring activity. I try mightily to show some engagement in the process, but it didn't take long for B to catch me pouting in the corner of the shop.

Poster for Champagne Jam
     I do have one piece of useful advice that I discovered this week. I took several packages to the UPS store to send to our children. It turns out that UPS is good for sending big packages short or medium distances. But I had a package going to the West Coast. It wasn't very big, wasn't very heavy. UPS charged me $16.80. It will arrive on Thursday. Later, I found out I could have mailed it at the U. S. Post Office, priority mail, for just $13.60, or $3.20 cheaper . . . and it would have arrived on Monday or Tuesday, two or three days faster!

     So those of you still to send out your presents . . . take heed.

     Otherwise, B and I are going over to Asbury Park, NJ, this weekend to take in a show at Convention Hall. The venue is on the boardwalk, on the beach. That alone should be fun.

     We're going to see Champagne Jam, a holiday party for a lineup of Indie Rock bands. The show is headlined by The Front Bottoms. If you don't like this sample, below, don't bother trying to look up another song, because -- again, according to B -- all their songs sound alike.

     I like them. But whether you like them or not, you might identify with their one lyric: "I miss the way things used to be."


19 comments:

DJan said...

I'm with you about picking out wallpaper. Are you going to install it? That should be interesting! I've been retired for almost a decade now, and I'm sorry to say that I still am waiting to be bored. :-)

Kathy @ SMART Living 365.com said...

Hi Tom! Did you read my blog post about boredom a week ago? What I learned is how it is an excellent catalyst for creativity. According to this post, you should be bursting with ideas!!! :-) Other than that I think we all have gotten so addicted to needing to be productive and busy that we resist the opportunity to just slow down a bit and enjoy the moments as they come. Although, I am not really a wallpaper kind of person either! Enjoy your show this weekend and let your creativity run wild! ~Kathy

retirementreflections said...

Hi, Tom - Your life does not sound boring to me at all (and I've been following your blog for a while now). Enjoy the Champagne Jam! And thank you for introducing me to The Front Bottoms. They sound like a band that my youngest son (29) would LOVE. I can now sound half-cool when I ask him if he likes them!

Terri @ Coloring Outside the Lines said...

I totally get it- retirement is going to be a trying time if I don't get it together. I am already at the bored stage, and mostly it's my own fault for letting a lot of hobbies go by the wayside as I grieve and try to come back to myself Picking out wallpaper is not fun, but remodeling is...in short spurts of time. Have fun at the jam..love the sound.

retirementallychallenged.com said...

I love retirement, but your line about not being bored, but living a boring life resonated with me a bit. It's not always boring, but sometimes it can feel that way - especially when we aren't traveling, getting ready to travel, or just getting home.

Still the Lucky Few said...

I'm sure your boredom will be temporary, Tom. I think you are just shifting gears...getting used to retirement. You will look back some day and wonder how you found the time to be bored! At least, that's what I wish for you! Love the wallpaper, by the way!

Tom Sightings said...

Kathy, I did read your blog post ... a good one. And retirementreflections, you are right, the audience for The Front Bottoms tends to be a lot younger than we are. I like to think that I am young at heart (altho' some people say I'm just immature).

Barbara - said...

Sounds to me much more like you are living life rather than being bored. I mean, If I say that last week I stayed home, read two books, did some sewing wrote a bit, walked every day, and so on and so forth the sum of the parts can sound really boring, But individual I loved the book for example. I think as retirees sometimes we feel that we MUST be doing things, hhave a direction or whatever. Sometimes were just relaxing and doing all those "lesser things", which often end up being a really full life when put together.

Olga Hebert said...

I like the wallpaper choice. I am not bored by retirement although it's certainly possible that I am boring!

Stephen Hayes said...

Thanks for that mailing tip.

gigihawaii said...

I am bored, too. Aloha from Hawaii.

Laura Benjamin said...

Wallpaper--too much detail! Know what you mean about having a boring life even though you're not really bored. I manage to do it with a job and everything. So don't feel bad, it's probably just a stage. Just remember there's a curse that goes "May you live in interesting times."

Rian said...

Sorry, Tom... definitely not bored. And although DH and I live a fairly quiet life (with kids and grandchildren), we aren't extremely social. So outside of going out to eat with friends occasionally, we're pretty much home bodies. I do take classes at a nearby college and have lots of creative hobbies that I find enjoyable. Boring life - maybe, but pretty content with it. Maybe you need to find something you love doing or always wanted to do... and go for it.

Linda Myers said...

I'm not bored, lucky for me. It's important for me to keep my brain occupied with something interesting, or I go into my head, which is in a bad neighborhood!

My latest fun thing is to make a selection from the Insight Timer app on my phone, then lie on the bed and meditate to it. If I snooze, that's okay too!

Jono said...

You don't have time to be bored. If you had the time I doubt that you would find it boring. There is just too much to do and many things to enjoy doing.

Sue Loncaric said...

I was only thinking about my retirement the other day. I have been retired for about 4 years now and have been able to keep busy. However, I was pondering the thought about filling in time just for the sake of doing something and actually doing something that brings satisfaction. I think that is so important as retirement can last for a long time (if we are lucky to have good health) so it is a matter of finding some balance that will make you feel fulfilled yet also have time to relax.
Sue
www.sizzlingtowardssixty.com.au

Rebecca Olkowski said...

I live with a retired guy and he putters around the house all day. I'll never be able to retire because I have always freelanced. Even if you're retired you still have to find a purpose and do something that's fulfilling. It could even be volunteering if money isn't a problem. Some people love being docents because it's always interesting.

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Anonymous said...

Maybe you should run naked thru your backyard. That could add some excitement to your life. Seriously though I agree with you. I am going to retire in January and am already wondering how I will fill my days. I don't want to do things just to fill time. I will be selective and take my time. Some days I am bored at work so if some days in retirement are boring that is OK. A lot of retirement blogs almost make me think that if I don't have something scheduled each day I will be one of the "poor " retirees who is not leading a rewarding, fulfilling life.