“People…have this fantasy about retiring…” – Bob

Posted on February 6, 2013 at 3:13 pm

Meet Bob.  Bob is a smart, smart man. He did all the things they tell you to do. He went to school. Then he went to more school. He got a good job. He made informed investments in stocks and real estate and, after an impressive career as a hospital administrator, managed to retire a little early in Reno, Nevada.  Then he played a lot of golf and spent time with his friends and family. And then the year 2008 happened.

Bob lost most of his retirement savings in the market crash of 2008, and was subsequently forced to return to work. Despite having played the game by the rules and being a responsible, socially minded and financially educated man, the promise of a comfortable and well-deserved retirement evaporated in a relative instant due to factors almost entirely outside of his control.

Bob has a positive outlook and some interesting notions about the concept of retirement, as a whole. What does it really mean? What are people going to do with themselves, even if they have their finances secured?

Bob’s story is first because it is the scariest. The fact that he is able to look on his losses with a positive spin and ponder the future of his golf game is a self-acknowledged luxury.  He knows that, despite the financial collapse, he has the resources and wherewithal to rebuild. He knows he’s one of the lucky ones. But you have to wonder: if the rug can be pulled out from under someone like him, what does that say about the chances for the rest of us?

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