You know those (IMHO) wasteful Social Security statements the SSA sends you once a year? I want you to know, as you get older, looking at those things is downright depressing.
Not only the obvious fact that all those taxes you paid over all those years buys you a “pension” that can’t break the poverty line; I’ve known that since I was a child.
No, what’s so depressing is that right there, on one sheet of paper, is your whole life.
It lists what you’ve made every year since you started working (for me, it was 15). Lintilla and I looked at mine over the weekend, and it was like looking at a photo album. Look, there’s where we got married! There’s where I lucked into a job that doubled my salary, just in time to adopt Zaphod. There’s where we went on our anniversary cruise. It was all there, in financial terms, of course.
On one sheet of paper. Actually, one corner of one sheet of paper. That was it. That was my life.
Radnur Siitam sang a song at the coffeehouse that really touched me, about how our lives can be summarised as the dash between the dates on our tombstones. That’s what this reminds me of.
All these things I get so worked up over, I fret over. In the end, it’s a chart in a corner of a sheet of paper. That’s downright Ecclesiastical.
We now return to our regularly scheduled optimistic happy-talk.