Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Enough Of Choosing Your Own Retirement Date

More land over the horizon, mook
A small note to any athlete reading this, or having it read to them... stop trying to game life.

One of the very small ways in which we all find your existence to be laudable is that, well, what you do is clearly work. It may be overcompensated, it may have aspects of fun to it, but there's lots of practice and putting up with meathead coaches and teammates and media. We get that it's not all skittles and beer, and that having a job that's predicated on physically beating someone with a fairly similar job, to a point of statistical exactitude, can be daunting. No issues; better you get paid than the filthy owners.

But for heaven's sake... retirement is something that people do in late middle age and above, not what you do in the prime of your life. Especially when everyone knows that your earning potential is going to go to squat after the jersey comes off your back, and the vast majority of you are vastly unprepared for What Comes Next.

So if you are too hurt to continue, say so, and quit. If you've made enough money and miss your family, say so and quit. If you're tired of putting up with the things you put up with, say so and quit.

But this idea that you can snuff it at the exact right moment and add to your legend is proof that you're trying to live your life like it's a scene from a graphic novel, written and enjoyed by idiots.

Play until no one wants you. Suck the marrow out of every bone. Add every yard, strikeout, hit or point to your totals, because you can, and even the per-diem is going to be better than what's next.

Honestly, we will all respect you so much more than the guy who's trying to set up the Ride Off Into The Sunset cinematic music in the background. Because that rarely if ever works anyway...

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