Planning for a happy retirement

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Posted 10/03/17 (Tue)

What A Joke
By John Bayer

I was listening to a financial call-in radio show the other day. People were calling in to find out when they could afford to retire and how long their savings would last them once they did.
I was inspired to make a thorough examination of my own financial future. At my current rate of savings versus expenses, I will have no trouble living comfortably to the ripe old age of 100 years old. . . provided I work until I’m 107. 
It’s important to save for retirement. Some people invest their retirement savings in stocks, some favor bonds, while others lean toward precious metals. I heard that utilities are a good place to invest, and that’s where most of my money goes. That’s not to say I’m investing in coal or natural gas; I mean most of the money goes to pay my water and electric bills.
Quite a few people retire to places like Belize or Costa Rica, not only for their exotic feel but because the cost of living is lower than in the United States. That’s a pretty smart strategy, but Central and South American countries are still out of my price range. Right now the top candidates for my retirement are: North Korea, Chernobyl, and the island from “Lost.”
I’ve been able to save more money recently by cutting my food bill in half. Here’s how you do it: Every night, show up at a different friend’s house uninvited and join them for dinner. This will alienate the people you care about the most, and cause you to lose friends. Unfortunately for you, this is a column about keeping your money, not keeping your friends.
There’s also the tried-and-true retirement strategy known as “being a constant burden to your family.” This approach has worked for millions of people, including my own parents. They have opened up their home to my sister and allowed her to live there for free. All she has to do in exchange is cook for them, clean the house, assist in their personal hygiene, and abandon any semblance of having a life of her own.
As a single guy, I’ll have no family I can burden in my old age. I will likely have to go with Plan Z – slipping in the produce aisle, breaking a hip, and suing the grocery store.