Chris Moerdyk

Retirement is an impossible dream

2012-11-26 07:27

Chris Moerdyk

Retirement, I am told, takes immense courage and considerable willpower. Compared with retirement, running a giant multi-national conglomeration is chicken-feed.

First of all, it means not going into an office every morning but rather staying at home with your spouse.

The first time your courage will be tested will be on the very first morning when you discover that the passionate goodbye kiss you got every day was not actually a sign of endearment or sadness that you would be away from home for about 10 hours, but rather a sigh of affectionate relief that you would be out for your spouse's hair for a glorious 10 hours and that everything from the TV remote to what time to have tea in the morning would not be the cause of a major interpersonal conflict.

It is a proven fact, or rather, it should be a proven fact, that after only a few months of retirement, most people try to find job again. Or just get drunk.

Lifestyle changes

The next great epiphany experienced by retirees is that pension funds aren't actually enough to keep up the lifestyle to which they were accustomed. Basically for two reasons:

1. That you didn't factor in the number of office perks you had that allowed to you live the life of Riley. Perks such as car, company petrol, air miles. Ah yes, air miles.  Gained on company business and used for personal holidays. Nothing wrong with that and all perfectly legal, but the practice does tend to lull one into a sense of well-being in terms of being able to take an exotic holiday overseas every year.

Retirement for the masses is holiday castration.

2. You realise that the insurance company, with whom you placed your pension contributions and who kept telling you that you would just investing a few Rands, be able to retire in the style of Richard Branson the day you turned 60, was lying.

What they didn’t tell you was that if the stock market was looking healthy on the day you retired you would have a bit of money on which to retire gracefully. However, if the stock market happened to be down on the day you retired, you would not be able to retire gracefully but just be extremely pissed off and would have to find another job just to pay for bread and milk.

The next great epiphany you will experience is that if you had taken all that money you had ploughed into an insurance company's retirement annuity or other such pension policy and rather just bought their shares on the stock market you would have ended up with 10 times more money.

Don't tell people

So now, having discerned that your wife actually didn't miss you a damn while you were at the office and that your good buddy the insurance broker turned out to be a sneaky bastard Judas, what else is there in retirement that will kick you in the testicles before the end of your first  month?

Well, perhaps you made the great mistake of telling people you were going to retire.

This is one of the dumbest things a retiree can do if indeed said retiree just wants some peace and quiet and to be able to fiddle about in his little workshop or her pottery studio, happily whiling away the hours between blissful sleep, late breakfasts,  unhurried lunches and drinks time.

If you tell people you are retiring they will think: "Aha, he's got nothing to do and he is cheap" and they will entice you back into working harder than you did when you had a proper job for half the money. And you can't really say no because you will keep thinking that the work will be easy and the money easier.

To make it worse, your spouse will really  hate you now because not only are you not leaving home for 10 hours, you are actually staying at home but unavailable for 10 hours to mow the lawn, pick up dog poo, fix the tap and go shopping for Aunt Ethel's 90th birthday present.

So, before you retire, think about it.

- Follow Chris on Twitter.

Send your comments to Chris

Disclaimer: News24 encourages freedom of speech and the expression of diverse views. The views of columnists published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24.


- News24

NEXT ON NEWS24X

South Africa needs the arts

2014-10-24 09:02

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
8 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Seen something you like in our catalogue?

Find the perfect gift and save up to R5000 – As seen on the catalogue. Hurry and shop now!

Save up to R1000 on Hisense smartphones!

View the large range of Hisense smartphones. Buy today and save up to R1000!

Toys 4 for the price of 3

Buy 4 toys and get the cheapest FREE! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing prices – As seen on TV

Get mind blowing prices on 1000’s of products! Shop now.

Deal of the week!

Save R1200 on the Samsung 48” smart full HD LED television now only R8799. Buy now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may prefer to be in charge because then you can call the shots. You are not as flexible as you like to make out to be and you...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.