Buddy Ebsen wanted to die in front of the cameras
The Beverly Hillbillies star showed no sign of slowing down.
Retirement can seem like an oasis at the end of life's long workload. Whether we love it or hate it, a career is work, and it's bound to exhaust us at least some of the time. So we save and do our best to ensure a secure future. Or, at least, most of us do.
For Buddy Ebsen, work was no great chore. Sure, it was a decades-long, physical job, but dancing and acting were his genuine passion. While the crafts both took a toll on his body, Ebsen was absolutely on board with the sacrifice. He would've done anything to keep entertaining.
In a 1984 interview printed by Scripps-Howard News Service, Ebsen described the philosophy behind his work ethic. There was a tune, "September Song," from the Broadway show Knickerbocker Holiday, that said it best, according to him.
"There's a line in that song which expresses why I never will retire," said Ebsen. "' Those few golden days I'll spend with you.'"
By '84, Ebsen was 76-years-old. His career bridged the gap from Shirley Temple to Barnaby Jones, stopping by for some of the most legendary Hollywood projects in between.
His career was incredibly far-reaching and he did seemingly everything an actor could do. But, if there was one thing Ebsen wasn't going to add to his resumé, it was retirement.
"Maybe one of these days I'll die on stage or in front of a TV camera. But retire? That wouldn't be any fun."
No matter where your life takes you, and whether you decide to retire or not, be sure to do what you can to have fun along the way.