Saturday, June 18, 2011

That said, this week was pretty cool

Before reading this, you should know that this note is an unstructured collection of random thoughts, aka verbal diarrhea. I only wrote this because I felt like writing what was on my mind. You've been warned.

This past month, I have gotten the opportunity to meet the top management of both Hulu & Netflix. A few months prior I met the CEO of Caterpillar and in a separate occasion had a conference call with Nat Rothschild of "Baron Rothschild" fame. It's all pretty cool stuff and it's fun to see how these Atlas's are moving the world. I'm sure I'm forgetting some other memorable characters, but this evening I'm drawing a blank.

On a separate note, sometimes people like to deride those employed in the financial industry. At one wedding recently (cousin's of my mother in-law) one of the best men said something like "the bride stopped working at Citigroup because she wanted to do something with her life." I don't blame him as it's easy to think it's one big casino where overpaid assholes move around stacks of paper with no value add to society, but I disagree with this perspective. Yet I also disagree with the idea that it's "God's work" as Llyod Blankfein described it. I think the answer is clearly somewhere in between. If pension funds didn't compound their money by investing in hedge funds and other investment products (including ETFs), there would be a lot of burnt out retirees eating dog food into their 70's.

Sometimes in a Mad Hatter sort of moment I try to force myself to imagine impossible scenarios. One of which is what if I didn't work in finance? If this was the case, and I had to restart my career with absolutely no venues for finance (aka I couldn't even be bank teller), I would like to think that I would strive to work at the cutting edge of some industry. Potentially media, energy or computer programming. There would also be the serious risk that I would consider the stable route which I knew would pay well at the expense of having some cool experiences (aka why the suicide rate in dentistry is so high). I would like to think the experience of riding the wave of some game-changing technology would be a lot of fun.

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