The Joys of Not Working


In TV, it's been said there are two types of people—those who have been fired and those who haven't been fired yet. When it happens to you, I have some advice—enjoy it. Here are some of the joys I've discovered recently being under-employed.

The dog and I have grown somewhat closer. At first, she seemed confused to see me still here during the day, but now we sometimes take late-afternoon naps together.

My garage is so organized that I picked up a few hundreds bucks on Craigslist selling stuff from in there that I forgot I owned.

My kids love having me home—I'm like a chauffeur-driven ATM machine. Nothing new here, really, except I've added the day shift to my evening duties. One afternoon, I took my son to the mall, a place I'd usually refuse to go even at gunpoint, but had the time to walk around and talk about his future and, ironically, mine. That bonding cost me a $75 pair of Nikes. .

I've got my wife's “honey-do list” down to just a page or two, although I've learned that no matter how many honey-dos I scratch off the list, new ones appear automatically.

My lawn is the envy of the neighborhood. I mow, I edge, I weed-whack.

Ironically, at least temporarily, I have more money to keep track of every month. My gasoline bill is way down since I don't drive much. I eat lunch at home instead of with the guys, and I haven't paid for a shoe shine at the airport in months.

Daily, I'm able to e-mail family and friends, some I hardly know, and keep them caught up on what I'm not doing. And even though I don't do much, I've found it takes me all day to do it, and I'm more tired not doing much than when I was doing a lot at work.

I haven't ironed anything in months. Jeans, T-shirts and sneakers are the uniform of the under-employed.

And instead of just showing up and sitting down, I get to help my wife prepare dinner every night. Who knew that chopping, peeling, dicing and cooking with your wife as you share some wine could be so much fun?

But the most important joy I've discovered in being under-employed is that even though I often lose track of what day it is, I never forget to take the weekend off.