This week's New York contains a brief story on the "sudden-onset poverty" — poverty, huh? — of an anonymous Lehman Brothers trader. There are million dollar mortgages and million dollar options packages gone to shit and wives who "can't" work and a sobbing nanny and mostly, lots and lots of blistering infinite anger in search of a target other than the indefensible practices and corrupted culture of an industry he bought into willingly. It's like, "Oh I'm so happy these guys get to stay home and spend time thinking about what's really important while instilling their own unique values systems in their kids!" Except the opposite:
On Saturday, September 13, the Trader took his 8-year-old son to his first Yankees game, against Tampa Bay. "My 8-year-old is asking me questions about the economy. And I'm thinking, You should really think about baseball," the Trader said. The Trader paid for great seats. They sat fieldside in the languid summer afternoon, six rows from the Yankees dugout. When the Yankees took the field, the Trader's son erupted in cheers. "Jeter! Jeter! Jeter!" he yelled, but the players jogged out to the field, with scarcely a glance toward the stands. "Daddy, why doesn't he answer?" the son asked. And suddenly, the Trader boiled with anger. He had done his part, put in the sixteen-hour days to buy his kid the best seats in the stadium. Lehman, and the career he signed up for, was disappearing in front of his eyes. Yet the Yankees were losing, and Derek Jeter was still going to take home his $21 million, and he couldn't even bother to show some gratitude. It was a fantasy world, out of touch. "Those guys have the easiest job," the Trader thought, "when it's clear they don't care. Fuck, in my next life I want to be a baseball player."
Um, sorry, Trader, I think in the next life people like you get born in Yemen or something! Also, some professional athletes are trying to bail out the likes of your troubled financial systems, God knows why, you ungrateful ungrateful asshole.