Sneakers and Jeans


Ever since I retired at the end of last year, every day is casual Friday. My typical attire when the weather is warm consists of t-shirts, jeans, and sneakers. In cooler weather, I replace the t-shirts with sweatshirts.

One of my first acts of retirement was to purge my wardrobe of most of my business attire. I did retain one suit, one dress shirt, one tie, and one pair of dress shoes just in case I am invited to a wedding or a funeral.

I also kept a blue blazer sport coat and a pair of khakis for those occasions that call for “dress casual.” Other than those items, though, everything else went to my local Goodwill store.

I truly feel liberated by being able to go casual every day. It’s the best thing about retirement.

Also, not having to get up and go to the office is pretty liberating.

Written for today’s one-word prompt, “casual.”

Stream of Consciousness Saturday — Balance


“Balance,” Jordan said flatly.

“Balance?” she asked.

Her question hung in the air for a few uncomfortable seconds. “Yeah, balance,” Jordan repeated. An awkward silence followed until Jordan finally broke it. “You know, balance. As in go with the flow, easy come-easy go, grin and bear it, roll with the punches. Balance.”

“Balance,” she said. “And how do you achieve balance?”

“I strive to maintain an even keel,” Jordan answered. She stared back at him until he continued. “I try to avoid life’s high highs and low lows.”

“How’s that working out for you? she asked.

“Um, okay I guess. I know a lot of people who are all bipolar and manic depressive and things like that,” he said. “But I’m not like that. I’m easy going. I never get really depressed or anything. I try to steer clear of emotional extremes so that I can maintain balance. That’s good, right?”

“Are you happy?” she asked.

“Happy? Yeah, I guess. I’m content.”

“Content?” She jotted something down on her notepad. “Do you ever experience joy?”

“Joy? I suppose I do. Sometimes. Not very often. But I also don’t ever feel really down, either. As I said, I work hard to avoid the low lows even if it means having to sacrifice the high highs.”

“I think you may be paying too great a price by insulating yourself from the intensity of your feelings.”

“Well, I am who I am and I see no reason to change,” Jordan said with some irritation in his voice. “I may not be a highly emotional guy, but I’m in balance.”

He stood up, put on his jacket, and walked to her office door. “And the only thing I’m paying too great a price for, doctor, are these weekly bullshit sessions of ours.”

“Well, Jordan, it’s good to know that you can at least feel anger,” she said just before he slammed the door shut.

This post is for this week’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, which is to use the words “high” and/or “low” in the post. Thanks to Linda G. Hill.