Day 23,668: What It Means To Re-Fire

I have a beef with the word “retire.” According to Dictionary.com, the word means “to withdraw to or from a particular place.”

The Cambridge Dictionary is even more of a Debbie Downer on the word:

to leave your job or stop working because of having reached a particular age or because of ill health, or to cause someone or something to stop being employed or used

The example cited was “The aircraft was retired in 1990,” or taken out of service to be put out to pasture.

Today, the SpaceX program successfully launched its Falcon Heavy rockets carrying Elon Musk’s old (not retired) red Tesla into space to potentially orbit Mars. What made the event so spectacular was that it not only continued to put the space program back in action, but had two of three lower rockets return to earth landing in perfect vertical alignment. The third water landing was not successful, but two out of three was an amazing feat.

One might say the rockets retired from space to return back to earth, but no one will say it like that since the goal is to put the rockets back in service.  I,of all people, should not get caught up in definitions, since I have already retired from two jobs at various life stages. At one, I had hit 10 years of employment and an age that qualified me to take a small pension. I did. At another, with less years of service, my company was bought out in an acquisition. I qualified for another small pension when I reached yet another milestone age. At some point, I’ll shift from what I’m currently doing to doing something else, but I doubt I’ll retire. Instead, I’ll choose another “re” word. Here are some possibilities.

  • Reenergize
  • Revitalize
  • Renovate
  • Resume
  • Refine
  • Readjust

They are all so positive compared to retire!

So, in the spirit of my beloved Star Trek and now the SpaceX program, I think I shall never retire. Instead, I will regenerate on the Launchpad of my choice time to be able to refire my engines with future payloads. Maybe, there will even be a Tesla Roadster in my future! Heh, a girl can always dream.