As I opened the envelope and peered at my first paycheck, I discovered three important items.
First: The paycheck print is HUGE! Georgia's Teacher Retirement System obviously knows it is dealing with the squinting bifocal/trifocal crowd. Forget the magnifying glass that I had to pull out to read the fine print of all of the deductions in my working paycheck. This print is so large that I could post it across the room and use it as an eye chart. In fact, since I have little else to do these days, I might start practicing for my next eye exam.
Second: I won't have to fight my cat for the tender morsels in his food bowl. I may have complained for years and years about all of the money that TRS (Teacher's Retirement System) pulled from my monthly paycheck, but today I celebrated since my paycheck is 79% of the take-home pay that I received just one month ago. Imagine that! Each month I'll receive 79% of my pay without ever grading an essay, assigning homework, holding detention, returning a parent phone call, battling students afflicted with senioritis, attending a staff development session, recording grades, or supervising students in the cafeteria. Add to this paycheck the 1.5% pay raise I will receive almost every six months for the rest of my life, and I'm starting to think that I might learn to like retirement.
Lest I become too excited about this retirement check, I discovered one final thing when I opened the envelope and looked at my first retirement check today.
Third: I found a thorny warning typed in the same large print at the bottom of the check:
If payee is deceased return check to TRS.
Well, I don't plan to kick the bucket before I deposit my first retirement check. In fact, tomorrow, I may just write to TRS and point out the necessity for a comma in their warning. It's not like I have anything else to do in the next thirty years.
If I don't find some new students in the next few months, I may go insane!