Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The Right Drummer

My former co-worker, T, is between jobs, but don’t pity him; instead, feel envious. His wife’s time has been consumed by her business, and he has shouldered the joyful burden of caring for their 13-month-old daughter. Most parents realize too late that future compensatory efforts will never make up for lost time with their children, but T will not have those regrets. The price is having to live on one income, but the family is not cinching its belts too tightly—Potrero Hill is one of San Francisco’s picturesque districts.

I met father and child at a Vietnamese restaurant near his home. Over the course of the meal and our stroll to a coffee shop we were constantly interrupted by women who fawned over the baby. There’s something about the father-daughter pairing that’s catnip to the ladies, more so than any other parent-child combination. Guys, if you’re looking for a date, take your baby niece for a walk in a restaurant or shopping district.

T has re-activated his CPA certificate by taking the required 80 hours of continuing professional education. His example reminded me that I should do the same. I gave up the pursuit of credentials decades ago, but some, like the CPA, are worth maintaining for business reasons. (It will be tough to catch up, though; there were only 13 FASB pronouncements when I took the exam, and now there are over 160.)

Just straws in the wind, perhaps, but business activity seems to be picking up. My out-of-work friends are getting calls from potential employers, and headhunters are contacting us again. If he chooses, T will be back at work soon enough, but I can see why he’s not rushing. © 2010 Stephen Yuen

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