Medical Retirement from Federal Employment: The end of Act I, Scene I

Whether it is in some obscure off-Broadway play, or in a Shakespearean tragedy presented with lavish costumes and elaborate affectations, the end in Act I, Scene I sets the stage for the narrative following. Yes, yes – one can argue that there are “other” scenes, acts, pivotal moments and significant slices which also formulate the argument for such commanding cohesion in a story; but that misses the point – for, if everything is relevant, then nothing is important; and if nothing is important, then it negates the pointing out of relevance itself. The great Chekhov is the one who pointed out that, if you are going to introduce […] Read More …

OPM Disability Retirements: The verse of 1-liners

Can a verse stand alone, isolated in its metrical composition, without preceding or succeeding contextual delineations? Of what value can the singular have, without the surrounding aggregation of the whole? Like a scrap or fragment of a larger narrative revelation, of archaeologists and anthropologists working with but a piece of the greater story, the verse of 1-liners forever echoes for a harkening of others to join. John Donne poetically captured the sense of that isolation, and Thomas Merton wrote a reflective narrative upon that very theme […] Read More …

Federal Employee Disability Retirement: Riddance of the debasing alloy

It is always that minor impurity which devalues the whole; “but for” the element identified as an invasive component, the rest would constitute the purity of perfections. It is how we point fingers and bemoan the state of our own affairs; and how we make of a peripheral inconsequence the centrality of our problems. The evil that we identify as the foundational source of a problem is merely the canard for justification, and in the end, we don’t want it to go away, but to remain as fodder to fester as the legitimate basis of an illegitimate claim. […] Read More …

Disability Retirement from Federal Government Employment: The Well-Digger’s Daughter

It is a French film directed by Daniel Auteuil, and depicts an age just before, during, and after the First World War, when rural life still embraced a contempt for modern values, and the pastoral context defined the the quietude of family life yet unblemished but for private shame of family secrets. It is in the title itself which reveals much; for, there is no independence of a person’s name, and the underlying theme throughout encapsulates the right to a surname, the identity of an individual, and how the interconnectedness of one’s essence, being and substantive community is itself defined by the proper ascription of who we are related to, how, and by what legitimacy. […] Read More …

FERS & CSRS Disability Retirement: The Little Engine that Couldn’t

It is an educational tool utilized to impart upon children the value of hard work and unfettered optimism, but one wonders, At what point should the harsh realities of the world be included? How, sometimes there are situations where the obstacles are so great and the conspiratorial caverns so deep that the graph of upward mobility is but a mere mirage in life’s cycle of certitude. The balance between the benefit of maintaining optimism in the face of adversity, and tempering unrealistic expectations, is a scale of justice which is delicately configured throughout life. […] Read More …

OPM Disability Retirement: Moments of Perceptual Clarity

We tend to seek that which we cannot find; apply criteria beyond rational capacity; and derive statistical results nowhere to be discovered but for quantitative input implied by imaginary output. That single source of “meaning”; that “cause” which provides value; that lottery of life’s misgivings which fortune promised but never conveyed; and so the inheritance which Cain and Abel sought but for the love of their father and the instability which Dostoevsky described in his novels of heritage, destiny and anguish, are but filaments of our own fears and misgivings in a world which defies our limited attempts to garnish, contain and delimit. […] Read More …

OPM Disability Retirement: The idealist, the skeptic and the cynic

The idealist possesses the dreams of hope and promise; the skeptic, the singe of hurt enough to dampen the spirit; and the cynic, well, he is the grumpy old man who has seen it all, been battered about by the reality of experiential confrontations where tales make the sweat pour from salted wounds too hurtful for words to embrace. Do they represent a tripartite spectrum of thoughts, feelings and motives, or merely unconnected differences demarcated by time, encounters and length of procrastinated envy? Do we all begin with the zeal of idealism, pass through the comfort of skepticism, then end up bedridden in the cocoon of cynicism? […] Read More …

FERS & CSRS Medical Retirement: The False Option of Extremes

The choices we make are contingent upon the knowledge we possess; thus, if we choose between a tripartite offering of x, y & z, when (as perhaps illustrated by Venn Diagrams within a rectangular border representing the “universal” set of possibilities) actual and available options may extend beyond the known quantities available, then we have made our decision based upon an ignorance of alternatives. Offerings are generally made based upon self-centered care; in negotiating with an adversary, it is normally the option of extremes which are granted: […] Read More …

Federal Employee Early Medical Retirement: Sleep Disorders

Sleep disorders; non-restorative sleep; Sleep Apnea; Sleep dysfunctions; altogether, they can cumulatively comprise distinguishable medical disorders, but often are lumped together, and can encapsulate differing and almost opposite conditions, including idiopathic hypersomnia, major hypersomnolence disorder, insomnia, narcolepsy, and similar medical disabilities. Often, the effects and symptoms are the major issues, resulting in profound and intractable fatigue; inability to focus or concentrate; lack of mental acuity, etc. […] Read More …

Medical Retirement from Federal Government Employment: Byzantine Iconoclasm & Compromise

It was a period in history when religious images and icons were considered heretical. It resulted not merely in the rejection of new such images, but in the active and aggressive destruction of venerated art, sculptures, etc., and the persecution of those who created or owned them. The term itself has come to represent an unyielding, irrational stance, unmoved by rational discourse, and even more to the point, aggressive in stamping out all opposition. […] Read More …