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Friday, January 30, 2009

Banker Dicks and their Banker Chicks

As a bartender in NYC, there was no character I loathed more than the investment banker. They'd swagger in, decked out in a fancy suit, and armed with a devil-may-care, sneer-to-kill. To be fair, they didn't come into my bar all that often, it was too close to Columbia University, and too cheap to piss money the way they wanted to. So my exposure was limited...but those few experiences I had were always terrible, and I never understood how any woman could stand them. They'd roll in, approach two or three women talking boysterously after work and casually start insulting them. Everytime. Oh, you're a teacher? That's good, but what's the point? Oh you work for a magazine? How would you like to write something on someone who really matters? The megalomania was stunning. What was even more stunning was the fact that more often than not, their "charms" wore down the ladies defenses, and brought them home. No offense ladies, I just saw it happen fairly often. Invariably she'd be really turned off by his coarse, insulting mannerisms, but the "shock and awe" style of dating challenges a woman to defend herself. On a basic level, I used to do it too. But I would challenge their concepts of rationality, and perception, not demean their chosen professions or values. I hear you snort with disdain, so be it. I'll admit it up front, I couldn't help it, I was poor, bookish, and had little or no prospects, I was jealous.

Point is, now there's a website for the detritus, the human collateral that the ibankers left behind in their hasty exodus. The Times did a culture piece on "Dating a Banker Anonymous" so check out the ladies' website. Full of the types of complaints you might expect. He hasn't taken me out in months! But also genuine confessions from real women are are, really worried. I must confess, two years ago, I was all in favor of wealth distribution. Maybe it's just my way, maybe as soon as something becomes acceptable I abandon it, but my ardor has cooled significantly on the topic. For one thing, in my new life, I know a lot more of them. My basic opinion hasn't changed too much--there are real gems amongst them, but the cavalier attitude they took against anything not finance always bothered me.

Again, I feel sort of shorted. After eight years of watching the gluttonous orgy of buying and discarding, wining and dining, drinking and fucking (ok I had my fair share of the last) I finally decided to sell out and join the party. And the party ends. All I really wanted was to clear my student loans. Well so be it. My plan had been to regulate them anyway.

One last disjoined thought...this is part of what I've written about before...the city is changing. You can almost feel it. I walked alone down wall street last night at 9:30. (I went to the bank honey, that's all) The area is always quiet that late at night. But I saw all the new condos that have sprung up in the last year, and thought dismally, will they ever be filled? It's an unfortunate time, but it's also exciting. It's not everyday year you get to watch the entire zeitgeist of a city change so vividly.

1 comment:

HammClov said...

Funny, rereading this now I think. God. I fell sorry for bankers before the fall? My loss of faith in populism was shortlived, but undermining. The bankers did AOK. I'm willing to bet every single employee of Lehman Brothers is now fully employed, at a similar or higher wage.