Charlie Baker is a neurotic but charming 50-year-old workaholic CEO of a major Chicago ad agency who seems to have it all: an impressive house in an upscale suburb, an equally impressive salary, the requisite pretty wife and accomplished son. All of this comes crashing down when Charlie is unceremoniously fired. In an instant, his life is transformed from corporate titan to just another out of work American.
For Charlie—an admitted workaholic—a world without a job is a strange world indeed. Rather then tell his family, every morning Charlie leaves home to spend his days at an outplacement firm, where he meets a cast of equally desperate corporate misfits. As Charlie reluctantly embarks on a journey of self-discovery, he finds out what happens when his work life is lost and his real life begins.
Humorous, poignant, and honest, The Pursuit of Other Interests offers a glimpse into the lives, hearts, and minds of the 21st-century American family.
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He was doing his breathing techniques when his heart stopped again. The purpose of the exercises was to lower his heart rate, but apparently he had mastered the technique so well, he was almost killing himself. Lying on his back in his bed, nothing beating inside of him, he waited for darkness and then the revealing white light. Instead he felt something kick in, felt life rush through him, an electric, hot current. He sat up gasping for air, his hands at his throat.
"Charlie?" Donna asked. Her eyes were closed and she seemed half asleep.
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JIM KOKORIS’s work has appeared in the Chicago Tribune Sunday Magazine, USA Weekend, Chicago Sun-Times, and Reader's Digest. He is the author of the novels The Rich Part of Life, which has been published in 15 languages and for which he won a Friends of American Writers Award for Best First Novel, and Sister North. A graduate of the University of Illinois, Jim lives with his wife and their three sons in the Chicago area.