Category: My Life

Jan 25, 2021
By Michael Rupured
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Remodeling

Fixing up the house made my list of retirement activities. As I have no desire to move again, this is my forever home. A year of social isolation and way too much HGTV have inspired a desire to make better use of the space and how it works for me. I spend the majority of my waking hours in my recliner or at the coffee table on the footstool Toodles uses to jump onto the couch. The coffee table is my desk, dining area, and financial center. The dining room is home to my orchids and seed-starting operation. I use the office as a walk-in closet. Phase 1 (in process) is to renovate the master bath. Deciding to go from …

Jan 18, 2021
By Michael Rupured
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Blogging

Keeping my blog going is #2 on my list of retirement activities. Why keep blogging? Good question. My best answer is more excuse than justification. I enjoy writing. Blogging feels more constructive than journaling and is a lot easier than knocking out another novel. This blog and my reasons for keeping it have often changed. Initially, the Crotchety Old Man bitched about things that pissed me off. When my anger issues proved insufficient to keep it going, I expanded to other topics. I wrote a memoir (including many blog posts), joined a writing group, and penned my first novel. I confess to believing my contract and advance were equivalent to winning the lottery. Millions of fans would flock to my …

Jan 07, 2021
By Michael Rupured
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Journaling

Writing in my journal tops my list of retirement activities. I’ve kept a journal for more than four decades and counting. Over the years, my reasons for writing and the frequency of entries have often varied. If there’s any pattern, it’s that I write when I must. A pen an ink journal is the only option. Anything else is too easily edited as I write or later. Editing as I go wastes time. Lots. I can spend hours wordsmithing a first sentence. Beyond scratching out a word or two, ink prevents self- editing. I prefer bound journals with lined pages. Binding keeps me from ripping anything out. Lines save time too. Without them, I’d drive myself crazy trying to keep …

Jan 04, 2021
By Michael Rupured
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Retirement Resolutions

As of January 1, I’m officially retired. Friends ask what I’m going to do. The short answer: Whatever the hell I want. Living my best life is the goal. Figuring out what that looks like is the challenge. Rarely leaving the house for most of 2020 was good practice, a learning experience, and a chance to think about life after work. Moving is unlikely. Athens is a great place to live. I love the historic vibe, the tight-knit community, and the mild climate. Unlike anywhere else, I know my way around enough to get where I need to go and have friends who are happy to drive when I can’t. Travel is doubtful. Vision issues prevent me from driving and …

Oct 23, 2020
By Michael Rupured
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Seven Months Later…

COVID-19 has been with us for seven months. Millions of lives have been forever changed. My heart goes out to all who have lost loved ones, jobs, homes, or peace of mind. For me, the pandemic has so far been more inconvenience than hardship. I’m grateful, but take nothing for granted. I rarely leave home and always wear a mask when I do. I canceled my gym membership due to COVID. A bout of plantar fasciitis has forced me to suspend my daily runs. Sprucing up the yard has become my total body workout. I’ve removed big limbs, cut shrubs back hard, and moved tons of rocks, edgers, soil, sand and mulch. I’ve kept off the weight I lost and …

Mar 18, 2020
By Michael Rupured

Coronagedden

Long before corona arrived, Pandemic, a documentary series on Netflix, scared me so much I quit watching. According to the experts, a pandemic outbreak at some point is inevitable. Now we’re living it. Bad as the Covid19 outbreak is, we got off lucky. Some who get it will die, but the novel corona virus isn’t nearly as lethal as Ebola, HIV (untreated), or smallpox. Many who’ve tested positive have no symptoms at all. I’m not trying to minimize the threat — just saying things could be a lot worse. I took off work starting 3/7 for Spring Break, before things got real. Other than outings early in my stay-cation, I’ve been sheltering in place ever since. Classes were suspended for …

Nov 11, 2019
By Michael Rupured
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Granny

Dad’s mother — Granny to me — is the only grandparent I had the chance to know. She was an amazing woman — practically perfect as grandmothers go. I adored her. Granny was born in 1902 on a farm Hustonville, KY — a tiny town in Lincoln County just south of Stanford. She quit school in the eighth grade. As the oldest of ten kids, she was needed too much at home. She stayed on the family farm into her twenties. At 24, she married Arthur Rupured (1891-1964) who worked on a dairy farm near Lexington. From all reports, he never went to school at all and couldn’t read or write. He had two kids of his own when they …

Jun 05, 2019
By Michael Rupured
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No More Garage Sales

Late last year, I set a goal to have a garage sale in April or May — before it got too hot. Setting the goal lit a fire under my butt to finish organizing closets, cabinets, and drawers, but the garage sale ain’t happening. In fact, I may never have another garage sale again. I do a mean garage sale. Lots of signs and ads attract a big crowd. It’s not about getting the best price or what things are worth. The value to me is zero or it wouldn’t be there. Getting rid of stuff is the objective. Any proceeds are icing on the cake. “Keep, sell, donate or toss” was my mantra as I slowly worked my way …

May 30, 2019
By Michael Rupured

Time on My Hands

Teaching has kept me busy since before Andy passed last year. I’ve grieved plenty, but drowning in sorrow wasn’t an option. Between teaching, my regular day job duties, and taking care of myself and Toodles, I’ve had too much to do. I’m grateful, and not just for the distraction. Teaching a basic consumer course, while all-consuming, is incredibly gratifying. Many students say the class should be required. I bring my own flavor, of course, but the feedback is the same, no matter who the instructor is. No more working nights and weekends to stay on top of my class. School’s out until the middle of August. Having taught the class twice, I’m mostly ready — far more so than the …

Apr 01, 2019
By Michael Rupured
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My Journalig Habit

Journaling satisfies my compulsion to write and keeps me sane. The first of 24 volumes dates back to 1979. It’s not exhaustive — I’ve sometimes gone weeks and even months without adding a word. Since Andy died, I’ve been writing at least two or three times a week. I’m not trying to document my life for posterity. Leaving behind a record for whoever might be interested is not the point. In fact, finding a way to make every volume vanish when I die (Mission Impossible style) tops my bucket list. Over the years, preferences have evolved into idiosyncracies. The journals themselves have to be the right size. Lined pages are required. The last ten or so volumes had black leather …