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Life and Times of an itinerant slacker in Sacramento. Thrills, Spills Galore coming soon. Not to mention lots of opinions.

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Wednesday, September 17, 2008

One Year of Slackerdom

I am nearing the anniversary of leaving my previous year of fulltime employment in Civil Service, after a year of fulltime consulting at a corporation. I can’t keep myself from looking back and weighing my life in this balance.

In the present moment, it feels like my life is in a holding pattern. I am not working on any great projects or toward any great achievement. I have taken up regular exercise, and I’m spending more time taking care of routine stuff and making music. I make just enough money tutoring on some weeknights that I am not a financial drain. I am President of a music society and a happy dude most of the time. People enjoy my company more these days, which is the best measure I have of my own happiness.

I left the fulltime gig without a concrete plan for the future. When I came to the opinion that staying on would make me a crook in my heart of hearts, bugging out for the dugout was the only reasonable option. Spending workdays engaged in dynamic inaction was more tiring than really working. I left betting that my creativity and other resources would be sufficient to develop a satisfying life, or at least more satisfying than working in a shady joint.

My original idea was to talk with folks in my field in the few local companies, and try to figure out some part time way of working. Before I got this effort started in earnest, the contacts got fired from the two local companies, in a couple of strange corporate bloodbaths. So far, all these guys except one are still more or less hanging out. The one guy who found work is now living in Singapore, his wife’s country of origin. All this baggage has dimmed my enthusiasm for getting actively back into the profession. However, I have kept my qualification and continuing professional education up to date.

Through the year, I have enjoyed doing morning yoga classes, going for a hike or bike ride in the wild areas near the river whenever I want to, doing the necessary shopping (mostly groceries) during the day when the stores are uncrowded, and butchers are willing to do custom work.

So I haven’t really done anything of note this year. I remind myself that the same was true for almost all the years when I was working fulltime. Sometimes the best thing to do is to just keep on going. I have a friend who looks at these times in light of ancient Egyptian history. Egypt had generations of dynasties that fill the centuries between the dynasties we view as great. Although not great, these dynasties were needed to hold civilization together between the great moments.

That being said, I am starting to feel it’s time to get off my backside, and expend more energy toward living a more interesting life. I have been warming myself at whatever fire I find near. Now it’s time to light my own fire. Step one is looking inward and outward to figure out what I am not doing now that I want to do. Burn Baby Burn!

That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

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I must enjoy shouting into a vacuum, but I think about getting my act together one of these days. My mom says I am very handsome and intelligent.

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