30 July 2005

Come with me!

Ok, check through this site and tell me where you want to go. I have 22 days of vacation and damn, these are awesome!

The coolest vacations ever

On second thought, I'll go alone if I have to! I WILL get all the continents on one passport... I've got until 2012... Asia, Europe, North America and Australia down... Africa, South America, and Antarctica to go :)

25 July 2005

What I really Want

I know EXACTLY what I want. I want to be in school again. I miss learning. I miss homework. I miss tests and grades and cramming and the thrill of wondering how I did. I miss stretching my mind around anything and everything that's interesting.
I found night classes in chemistry and lab but... they're $3700 each at Columbia. Absolute insanity. I can take a three week trip to the South Pacific for less! I found finance classes at Baruch for $850 a class and drawing classes at New School for $518... but... chem lab would be amazing, brilliant, fantastic...
I think the real reason I keep thinking of being a doctor is because it means I could go back to school for years. The same could be said for a PhD. The one problem is that I'd have to pick ONE subject. I want to take them all. Why aren't I in grad school? I am clearly meant to be an academic, so why am I out in the wide world? I mean this with all sincerity: what am I doing at a bank? And why don't I have the willpower to back away from it's outward allure? I'm so drawn in by the promise of the next step - the next achievement, but honestly, I don't want it other than to say I got it. I don't want to be an AD so much as being recognised as brilliant for becomming one so quickly.
I want to go back to school.

18 July 2005

I could use it

Fingers crossed and knock on wood - maybe there will some good news in August. I'm bursting with all the hope.

17 July 2005

Picked this little habit up in London... Suduko ... it's better than crosswords.

Work today was... well... while I was gone my boss gave me a completely new job. Yeah. Weird. When I left for London I was a trade support analyst and now I'm in a split role: one half data intergrity (awful) and one half project specialist (potential to be good). On balance, I'm not happy about this at all. Michelle says it's for three months maximum and she fed me a bunch of stuff about being the only one in the team who can do it, but basically, I just got handed the shittiest job in the group and the most underresourced job in the group and was told I have one week to learn all the new responsibilities. And if I'm really moved off in three months I'll be surprised - nothing ever starts or ends on time.
In response I put it all out on the table. I basically told Rocco and Michelle that I want to be promoted to supervisor and if I don't by the end of the year then I'm leaving the group. She still doesn't know I'm looking already - I don't want to be there anymore. I can't believe the desks didn't fight for me (I don't actually think they know yet) since they've all said I'm the best support they have. Well, at least I have some focus on where I'm looking to go: London, Andrew Watson, or Daniel Maury's reporting structure. It's no longer about the work I do, but the opportunities I'll get and the managers I'll have. I was naive to think that doing a sterling job anywhere helps you - you need to do a sterling job around people who aren't prone to throwing you into crappy jobs like DI. I did something similar as an intern and I was ready to slit my wrists over it. If they want to keep me from going to med school they ought to do better than this. But what choice do I have? I can't exactly tell my boss no. Besides getting low points on teamwork etc I'm pretty sure it's not a request, it's an order. Everyone has to do boring work sometimes, it's just that they don't realise that everything I've done since I got there has been mindnumbing. Man, I was feeling so positive after London, so quietly confident, and now I come back to find my boss has moved me into the crappest job in the team because everyone else is to stressy or slow to do it. This sucks. If I was average I wouldn't have to do this. Maybe I should just act stupid for a while. Being smart got me this, maybe being stupid will finally get me promoted. Ok, now I'm just whining. There's got to be a bright side to this, even if it's only that it gives me more motivation to get myself the hell outta there.

11 July 2005

There are sights, events, and people that inspire you and change your course in life. I spent the last week in the company of Daniel Maury and I think he's one of those people for me. Many of the older people who have given me guidance have said that careers go in cycles: happy and grinding, inspired and muddling. Since school I've really been in the unhappy catagory, though recently I have begun to re-evalute my muddling label. I think there is quite a bit going on - but back to Daniel. He's the first person I've come across that I really want to work for and with, regardless of the product involved. It is exciting and inspiring to be in his company and he is a truely brilliant and charismatic man. He become an ED at 35 after running his own online trading platform business and working for Arthur Anderson and JP Morgan. Now he's in Fixed Income in UBS and I'm seriously considering looking into roles there to get into his reporting structure.
What Daniel did for me in the final review meeting, and I doubt he was aware of it, is reassure me after a year and a half of doubt, that I CAN be good at this. I will get as far and as I high as I want to go. I have the potential to do this and do it well. If he can do this - if he can be excited by his work, there must be something in this firm for me too. Hearing him say this was more powerful than hearing it from anyone else I've heard it from.

07 July 2005

I'm in London, working at the London office - the one right by Liverpool street. A bomb went off there this morning.
They evacuated the 100 Liverpool street office, but the trading floor building, 1FA was left to continue work. We had the SkyNews channel on all day and, needless to say, trading patterns were decidely non-standard. None of the subways (tubes) were running again at the end of the day so everyone was walking across London to get home or waiting two hours for a taxi. We have work as usual tomorrow, but I imagine it will be strange. There's already an echo of uncertainty in the air about resuming normal life. Is it ok to just continue? Shouldn't there be something different, something done or said?
It's also strange how muted the world's reaction seems. I mean, six bombs which could (as it stands now) be attributed to a new sect of Al Qaeda is big news. They threatened London after Madrid was hit and it would seem they have made good on that threat, but the market is down only 1.5% and the US market rallied in the afternoon. I mean, they target the US and the whole world is in uproar, they hit Madrid or London and it's news for a day? I'm not sure exactly what I expected, but, it seems like the rest of the world is saying "gee, that's horrible" and promptly moving on.
On a different note, being in the London office has been eye-opening. The attitude and expertise is very different here and I'm learning a lot. I'm also remembering how much I miss the UK and it's renewing my desire to move back here for at least a few years. One of the traders also let it slip that he's been getting "good reports" about me. Another mentioned that when he's got new or difficult things to get done it's "sort of known to go to [me]". There's been an awfult lot of negativity about the Stamford group in general coming out of London, so it was especially nice to hear they don't see me as one of the big failures. They actually seem to think I'm going to bring the whole team up... which leads to something else I realised.
I have always paid lip service to the idea of making your whole environment better, but it really hit me today. It's not enough for me to be good at what I do - it's about making everyone around me better at what they do. Being really good, being brilliant, is the ability to bring the average up; to bring out the brilliance in everyone around them. So I guess that's my project before I find something else to do. Like get promoted. Or take a job on a desk. Or go to med school. Something is going to change by December, but until then, it's about leaving trade support better than I found it.

03 July 2005

Quite honestly... I'm a bit drunk. Went out to Sutton Place and had three drinks? Got hit on by some strange Brazilian guys who thought Jackie was Philipino....heard a green day song.. made me miss Joey... there were Nascar highlights on the tv - even drunk it's not interesting to watch. Very strong drinks... good night! :) um... good night. haha...

02 July 2005

01 July 2005