Yesterday, waiting for a lunch meeting, I met an old friend for coffee. We wandered into the recently renovated MOMA in midtown, with its quiet sculpture garden. His employer, like all the big banks, is a major donor, and his ID card gained us immediate entry. Manhattan is like a big amusement or theme park for financiers. Relative to their compensation, all the rides (taxis, restauarants, everything but real estate) are free! See the drivers in big black sedans dropping off perfectly groomed, uniformed children at their $25k/y private schools, where the headmistress greets each child by name.
Today someone added the following comment to an old post on this blog entitled Don't become a scientist:
What about your children?
I'm a phd physicist who loves his work... but is dreading the day when he has to tell his kids they'll be going to UMaryland instead of Princeton because daddy loved his work too much. Grass is always greener, I guess... but... when you're 34 and trying to raise a family on what amounts to a lower-middle class scientist salary... you have a tendency to wonder why you didn't chose the path of the lawyers who process the paperwork for your patents. After all, they make a lot more money on my intellectual property than I do.