Kids, No Chaser

I am Lazy: Theorems and Dad Bad-assness

Sunday, November 13, 2005 posted by Henri

I've always thought I just might be the laziest man on the planet. In the blink of an eye I can waste an entire day doing pretty much nothing. I've seemed to be able to compensate for this with brief moments of absolute brilliance and immigrant diligence. Such moments included every night before any exam I ever took during my undergrad years. Ahhh those wonderful college days or as I refer to them, las dias de Streetfighter Forever. I actually learned a lot from Streetfighter. I learned about out of the box thinking, never underestimating your opponent, Darren sucks and I rule, lots of stuff. (continued) Anyways, so one day I realized a great solution to my slacker problem: get a career. Somewhere along the way I had picked up one saving characteristic grace from my dear old Dad. When you're a Family man you work hard. Not that I work hard, but I know that I am supposed to work hard. So getting a job has helped me not slack because now I can simply go to work. It is impossible to waste a day at work because you're busy working all day. During my impressionistic slacker undergrad streetfighter days I also read a lot of crappy Ayn Rand because I didn't know any better. And this like some kind of retrovirus implanted some strange idea of trying to maximize the worth of any endeavor and your effort kind of goes along for the ride. So in college I maximized my slacker streetfighter and whiskey and whisky drinking...well actually it was more like a few beers or Country Club malt liquor...but now I can afford the good stuff (old english). Anyways so Dad and Ayn somehow implanted in my nature an OK work ethic, so when I actually started working I found that I was pretty good at it. So this was wonderful; afraid of wasting a day? Just go to work! So then I thought it would be pretty funny to go to night school on top of that so that I could be like my Dad and have cool stories to tell my kids. "Son when you were born I worked all day and then went to night school so that you could have a better future." My Dad still has me trumped with the whole I tried to organize worker's rights in Korea as an executive, started a labor movement which was squashed by the Man, forced out of my corporate attorney position, blackballed and forced to seek a better life in America with only $200 and this Korean blanket, working menial jobs and saving every penny, not buying a coke for the first 5 years in America because it was too expensive, arc welding without a mask because the racist work crew thought it was funny for me to go blind, opening a liquor store and being robbed at gunpoint a few times, and finally moving to California and making it as a diamond dealer, and don't even get me started about what your mother went through. So suffice it to say my Dad worked 6 days a week his whole life, and it was a given. So all I have is hey I'm an eye doctor but I go to night school too. Oh wait I can throw in struggling artist just to make it sound better. I'm going to claim struggling artist status. I do work 6 days a week though...well actually did work 6 days a week. So now I finally have arrived at the point of my story. I have stopped working 6 days a week and am having a lot of trouble with this transition. Now I know plenty of people who work 5 days a week and have it a whole lot tougher than I do...err did. Thats the whole point, I don't think working 6 days is hard, it seems all right to me. In fact I'm just trying to get all of it over with really. I figure I have to work 6,768 more days in my life so might as well get it all done with sooner rather than later. But then again I can't really see myself retired either. I have this saying I came up with: stop working, start dying. But I like to say it like this: "You know what they say...stop working start dying." I'd like to think maybe they will name this theorem after me, Henri's theorem. Stop working=Start dying. Kinda like when I promoted Henri's Sign as pseudo-notching of the optic nerve head cup secondary to irregular optic nerve head anatomy. I'd say cool things like "I've noted that this patient exhibits Henri's Sign or Signe du Henri" and my attending would be like shut up Henri thats a dumb sign and we're not naming it after you. Anyway to get back to the point, as a Dad I have this conundrum, is it bad to work 6 days a week? I remember growing up as a kid and thinking jeez I wish my Dad were here to help me with my Pinewood Derby Car. But now that I'm older I realized that 1) Pinewood Derby is stupid 2)Aerodynamics don't count on a 20 ft wooden track 3) Hard working Dads are tough and I'm proud of my bad-ass Dad. oh crap Conor's here. Ok Con type something:

m uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuiiouujnk m,u,lu9m,h89m8mh,;dsss

OK that was a BAD idea, my keyboard seems to be working still after Conman hurled it to the floor. Hmm what was I saying Oh yes, 5 day vs 6day work week and bad-ass dads. So anyways, if I work 5 days a week I get one extra day with my wife and kid. Thats sounds really cool, but it also seems like I'm slacking off a bit on my work duties as a Dad. Now a lot of you might think I'm being retarded, but if you worked 3 days a week or 0 days a week then what kind of example are you setting for your kids? The one thing I came to believe pretty early on is the fact that Dads really don't have as much influence or control over their kids as they think they do. I resigned myself to the fact that my words will have little impact on my kid, the reason for this being that I was a rotten kid myself. But, and this is a big but, I think the best thing a Dad can do is simply set a good example by practicing what they preach. I mean, the most influence my Dad had on me was me was not the lectures or stories but rather the man he is and how he lives his life. So...working 5 days vs 6. Well the clincher really is the fact that by working 5 days a week I'm doubling the days off I will spend with my wife and kid. Thats like living two lifetimes. Hmm kinda hard to argue with that. And when Conor's a bit older then I can start working for 7 days a week for just like 4 years or so and then he'll have that to look up to. Ok maybe that's a really stupid idea. Anyway I've decided to switch to 5 days a week. But I'm having the hardest time trying to relax and enjoy the extra day. All day I keep thinking, man you better get $X amount of enjoyment out of this day because that is your opportunity cost. I'm trying so hard to enjoy the day that it is putting more stress on me than being at work. But when it comes down to it we work for money and the passion for our professions. I don't need that extra day to be passionate about what I do, in fact working less makes me appreciate my work a little more. And money, well money is money. We could always have a bit more but my best bro once told me "Henri, stop selling your time". And thats exactly what I'm doing. I'm selling a day of my life for an extra day's pay. And although I don't make much money, I think I make enough. Which leads me to theorem number 2: I don't make a lot of money but it's enough, ergo entonces heretofor: if you're making enough (here comes the earth-shattering part) then you're actually making a lot. Circular non-equivalent bad sum logic I know, but theres something to that. I guess money is like oxygen...its really really important but in the end, you have to realize that when you have enough, it really is enough. Umm I guess thats theorem #3. In the end, we all lie on our death beds about to rejoin the universe and if we're lucky we'll have a moment to reflect, and although my kid might say jeeze my Dad was a lazy bastard and didn't work as hard as my grandpa, I will have had [52 * X years left on my life left] Extra free days with him. And although I know that quality is more important that quantity, I also understand house odds and the more days I have with the family the greater tha chance I'll have some great Days. And in the end, when I'm on my deathbed or lying in the street or falling from the sky or poking something interesting with a stick, my last living moment might be spent reflecting on that one beautiful day I had with my family instead of being at work. You know, that's worth a lot of money, maybe more than I would have ever made working that 6th day.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

i think you made the right choice with 5 days/week...btw henri, i don't think your entries are long enough. ;)

9:46 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Dad, could you stop poking things with a stick so that we can go out sometime this weekend? Me and Mom are bored...

12:34 PM


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