A few months ago, my employer told me I could retire if I wanted to somehow they would manage without me. So I filled a cardboard box with all my personal belongings and a lifetime supply of Post-it notes and I left. Now I sit around pondering what I should do with the rest of my life.
I am at that awkward age -- too young to walk the malls in bright green golf pants and too old to go back to school. I know, you're never too old to learn, but I wouldn't do well in a classroom of 20-somethings who have an opinion on everything; I have children for that.
Besides, school is hard and they expect you to pay attention and perform and contribute. I prefer the working world where you can fake it. I want a job where you don't have to have any talent or skills and you are accountable to no one. I've narrowed it down to three positions: celebrity, politician or king.
Celebrities are people who are well-known, but nobody has a clue why we celebrate them. They overindulge, go in and out of rehab and show up at parties without their underwear. These things are all within my skill set, although I would draw the line at the no underwear thing -- I'll show up without my socks.
Celebrities say vapid and stupid things like "I don't really think, I just walk" (Paris Hilton) or "I used to look in the mirror and feel shame, now I look and I absolutely love myself" (Drew Barrymore). This is a job I can do.
A little less prestigious would be the role of politician. I met a lot of them in my career and a few are truly dedicated, but most are dumb and duplicitous. You talk to them and you can't believe they are responsible for making laws, controlling budgets and determining the country's future. Some of these clowns shouldn't be trusted to make the correct change at Kmart, yet we give them billions to squander. This, too, is a career for which I am eminently qualified.
Although I know little about politics, I've picked up enough over the years to be a contender. I'll promise to fight for my constituents and bring change to wherever I'm sent. I will clean house, drain the swamp and usher in a new day for America. Our best days are ahead of us and I will present the kind of fresh ideas that only an outsider can bring to the table. I will be Abe Lincoln without the beard, Bill Clinton without the intern and George W. Bush without the illiterate remarks. I will be a man of the people!
The problem is I would need to get elected and that could involve work. Royalty, however, requires no campaigning, no cheesy fundraisers and no selling your soul to lobbyists. It is a birthright and appears to require no discernible skills. I saw Prince Charles on television the other day and the guy makes Eminem look like a Nobel Laureate. Charlie sounds intelligent, but take away that fancy accent and what have you got?
So, I hereby declare myself King of the American Realm. My duties will be similar to Charlie's: I will throw out the first football at the Super Bowl, open the new sessions of Congress and be available for ribbon-cuttings at all Sam's Clubs and Toys-R-Us.
Since we have no castles here in the colonies, I'll make do with the penthouse at Trump Towers and I will expect a large annual stipend from my loyal subjects. In return, I will exercise my right to have undesirables beheaded. Celebrities, politicians, pedophiles and TV weathermen will top the list of those with a date with the guillotine. Now that is cleaning house!
Bob O'Connor, a recent retiree from Hamburg, is considering a career as a politician, a celebrity or even a king.