My grandparents had to go into Detroit Lakes to run errands yesterday, so I rode along to pick up groceries, prescriptions, and sunflower seeds for a pair of cardinals that are toughing out the winter in the tree outside the kitchen window. We also made a detour to the thrift store, where I picked up a copy of Thomas Friedman's The World is Flat for my thesis, a hardcover copy of the Phantom Tollbooth for old times' sake, The Bonfire of the Vanities, and Nadine Gordimer's July's People and the House Gun, which I've been meaning to read. Everything together cost $3.50, and I was really, really tempted to whip out the $20 in my wallet and buy up all three copies of one of Rush Limbaugh's books, one of Ann Coulter's older books, the lone copy of the Broken Hearth, and a bunch of stuff by William F. Buckley just to keep them from falling into the hands of swing voters. (It wouldn't have been wasteful; my grandparents mostly heat the cabin with a wood-burning fireplace.) Instead, I took my grandparents for coffee and cookies at the diner down the street.
The moral of the story is that yesterday, I realized that I'm basically ready to retire. I think I have like forty productive years left, though.