Thursday, October 29, 2015
Nat Hentoff passes along a valuable lesson he once learned from Jazz legend Duke Ellington:
... This was when I was in my teens, working at a Boston radio station where I'd also had a weekly jazz program.Regarding part of the other subject matter of the piece, I'd respectfully advise applying this admirable reasoning to others, and leave it at that.
Later I was struck at how tired Duke had become while he and his orchestra were playing more than 200 one-nighters a year all over this land.
Presumptuously, I told him: "Duke, you don't have to endure this. You've written classics and can retire on your ASCAP income."
Duke looked at me as if I'd lost all my marbles and roared: "Retire? To what?"
In light of Ellington's wisdom, the evil of the irresponsible and impossible financial promises of Social Security pales in comparison to the emptying-out of existence it encourages, in the form of the recent invention of "retirement."