Friday, May 17, 2013

Four things I'll miss about being unemployed

(1) Stores with no one in them
You people who work 8 to 5 probably have no idea (as I had no idea) how wonderful it is to shop during the day. Stores are wonderfully uncrowded. The aisles are clear, there's always someone available to help you, and the checkout lines are nonexistent. You're in and out in minutes. I didn't even realize this was possible.

(2) The giddy feeling of a (relatively) unplanned day
Since about the age of 5, my days have been pretty well mapped out for me. Whether it was school or work, my time has been essentially spoken for over the better part of four decades. Then, suddenly, you find yourself sans occupation, and you wake up in the morning and realize the day is yours to spend as you see fit. There are some things you have to do, of course, like look for a job. But when I wanted to go to the library, I went to the library. When I wanted coffee, I had coffee. When I wanted to watch reruns of "The Beverly Hillbillies," I...well, I never actually did that during my four months of joblessness. But the point is I could have.

(3) Getting the mail
I extolled the virtues of this in a previous post, but it was such a highlight of my days that it bears repeating. I am endlessly jealous of my wife for being at home when the mail gets here. The possibilities of what you might find when you open that mailbox are manifold. Most of the time you end up disappointed, of course, but it's what you theoretically could find in there that's exciting. A check, a letter from a secret admirer, a notice from an attorney that a rich uncle has died and left you his fortune. They're ALL possible, do you understand? The mailbox is where the magic happens.

(4) My hoodie and slippers
This was the uniform of my unemployment: A black Denison University hoodie and my warm slippers. I was unemployed over the winter months, and I always found myself cold, so I would slip into these two items of clothing and instantly my body temperature would rise. Now I look at them both sitting forlornly in the closet and I get a little nostalgic. Then I think about the fact that I'm actually earning a paycheck again, and it's funny how quickly the nostalgia goes away...

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