For this Retired Author, Life is Risky


I’m in my 60s now, in retirement, and the older I get, the riskier life appears to be. I need not mention the higher risk of diseases, of injuries from failing bodies not as adept to navigate our busy world. Driving a car is one of the riskiest functions I perform and I’m more aware of the careless, younger drivers whizzing by me over speed limits with their young reflexes. Get out of the way, Grandma!

I’m an author now, a big financial risk I took in retirement to self-publish. One must pay for the editor, the illustrator, the layout, not to mention the printing costs (the more you print, the cheaper the cost per book. But the higher the risk – what if I don’t sell that higher quantity? What if, dread the thought, there is a typo or error that makes the batch useless? Is worry a risk? What about my book launch scheduled in a few weeks? Will the restaurant I’ve booked still be allowing large (how many is “large”?) groups to meet, given the health risk considerations during a pandemic?

Of course, life has always been risky. I’m fascinated watching and listening to the news, and to my friends and family discuss the latest world natural disaster – the  virus scare currently sweeping the planet. I’ve divided folk into 3 risk categories :

1) The fearmongers are stockpiling for end of times (don’t they read or watch apocolyptic books and movies? The stockpilers become the victims of the roaming gangs of bad guys!)

2) The deniers. They’re still on the cruise ships. Yes, I saw an elderly woman interviewed today, in the middle of the height of the outbreak fear, who said, sure she’ll still cruise, why not, it’s worth the risk to her. There’s something admirable in her –  courage?  I don’t want to say courage, maybe it’s foolhardiness. But then, I’ve seen foolishness confused for courage before. There are more younger folk in this group, and why not? They don’t know yet what they’ve got to lose.

3) The confused, ie, the rest of us. As I said, with age I’ve become more risk-averse. My retirement savings can’t withstand as much volatility as my sons’. I bought some extra cans of soup to stock up for potential extended self-isolation. I always have enough toilet paper, thank you, because I always buy extra when it’s on sale.

So, Good Luck to us all. Life is not always under our total control, no matter how much we plan, or want it to be. I may sell my whole pile of shiny, perfect (I hope) new books, or, I risk that I may not. I may at my age be more aware of the risk in life, but without risk, would life be so precious?


4 thoughts on “For this Retired Author, Life is Risky

  1. You’ve forgotten my category, “the savers”.
    I’ve amassed $2000 worth of nonperishable preserved and canned goods, frozen fruits and vegetables and a small pantry of consumable items.
    Gauging is the game when it comes to supply and demand and you can already see it on Amazon; $47 for a bottle of hand sanitizer?!
    I started purchasing case lots of canned goods right after Christmas when prices were generally 1/4 or 1/6 th of what they are now.
    As for the apocoliptic gangs attacking? They’d have to get through my gun cabinet first! Lol

  2. Well said, Stevie!! When everything gets back to “normal” then we can start traveling again. I was contacted this morning and told by the travel agent that my trip to Greece had been canceled for now…….so now I wait and keep relatively healthy for when this disease runs its course in Canada………Kat

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