By David Fay
When I retire I want colleagues to say:
Why are you retiring?
You’re still publishing papers!
You’re still doing important service!
You’re still teaching a key course!
When I retire I want to pass the baton running at a full sprint.
Or at least a respectable jog.
When I retire I want to my colleagues to breath a collective sigh of…
I want them to say:
Who’s going to do all this stuff now?
When I retire I want my lab to be spotless,
my office empty,
strains, reagents, and equipment distributed,
no loose ends.
Of course, it might not happen this way.
Something sudden or unexpected could derail my plan
along with every other plan.
Or maybe I’ll just get lazy and indulgent – which is not impossible.
When I retire I want to have regrets about retiring.
I want to leave with questions that will go unanswered (by me).
I want to leave with solutions to problems that are no longer mine to solve.
I want to leave with ideas for classes that I’ll never teach.
That’s how I’ll know I got it right.
When I retire I want people to initially miss me
and then forget me.
But not too quickly.