The New Normal

Have you seen an episode of the New Normal, one of the new NBC comedies???? IF you haven’t, you need to catch an episode or two. The show is not what you would call instantly funny, it’s more like the type that shocks your socks off and then makes you think about everyday conventions.

Have you introduced your kids to political differences, gay marriage, or mixed marriages? Have you thought about why you are voting for Obama or Mitt Romney? Is it based on color??? Seriously, this show tackles all these topics.

No, I’m not advertising for the show. I’m simply sharing something new that really made me think :) It made me wonder about how much or how little we have changed as a society. For example, as a personal finance blogger retirement is a hot issue. Everyone is talking about your current savings rate, if it’s enough to maintain your lifestyle, yadayadayada (like my Seinfeld reference?) The truth is retirement is a pretty novel and new concept! Yes, people, it’s new.

Did your great grandparents retire??? I know mine worked until they were in their 90s and couldn’t work anymore. Yes, they did. My great grandparents were 102 and 100 when they finally died. And my grandpa did not stop working (farming) until his 90s. Was he angry at the government for making him work until that age? No. Was he angry at the world because he couldn’t stop working because his 401K crashed? No. To him, the concept of retirement was implausible. Unless you were independently wealthy, “retiring” or simply “not working” was not an option. And yet, he still maintained what I call a wonderful life. He would take care of his animals, take the grandkids and great grandkids to the river and water holes, and farm the crops. He was one of the happiest people I have ever met in my life. In the end, I believe he was one of the most satisfied people that I have ever met. He worked hard for his family. I wonder what I would say if I went back to him and told him people think it’s a must to retire at 60. By the way, if you are thinking it’s a new age, my great grandparents died just a couple years ago.

I guess my point is that a lot of what we have and want right now, are things that previous generations never thought of in their imaginations.  Did my great grandpa want an IPAD? Uh no…What about a fridge or a stove? My great grandma was actually given a stove and a fridge by her kids, and never used them.

So many people want so much that is just beyond their reach right now (including myself! I blame pinterest!), and they take the plunge and do it. Have you thought about why you want it? Have you thought about what your new normal is? What your standards are based on? Have you re-evaluted your normal?

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4 comments

  • I LOVE this show! I can’t believe some of the dialog they can get away with, but I love it because it puts everything right there on the table. BTW did you see last weeks episode where the doctor guy gave mouth to mouth the the guinea pig? I was laughing so hard. Anyway, our normal is so different from our grandparents. IN some way things are better, and in some ways worse. I can only imagine how things are going to be different when I’m (hopefully) 90. BTW I’m old enough to be a grandma. I can’t even fucking believe it but it’s true. My old boss’s daughter is exactly my age, and she has a granddaughter. Granted all were pretty young when they had kids, but still. I’m in complete shock and denial.

    • Meh, I could say the same thing about being old enough to be a mother. No way do I feel ready or do I feel like I will ever be ready!!!
      I don’t know if I want to live to 90, it’s so old!!! My great grandparents lived for a century, and I’m still astonished!
      I haven’t seen last week’s episode! I’m behind! Can’t wait to catch it this week :)

  • Interesting! Personally, I don’t have the goal of retiring early. I want to have a career I love so I look forward to working, but then eventually have the financial freedom to be able to stop when I want to and live off of passive income. I don’t care if I work until 75, as long as I’m doing what I love, that’s what matters to me.

    • Me too! I don’t know what I would do with my time if I just stopped working. My definition of nice is not sitting on a couch watching tv. After a month of that I would go crazy :)
      I, also, just want to do something that I love :)

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