Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Good Jobs: Raising a Doctor, Part I

We had a party the other night, and a friend brought someone I didn't know, a young med student/doctor (I'm never been wholly clear when you stop being one and become the other) in her residency at Chapel Hill (is a resident a real, full-speed doctor? I know the answer is yes, but why do they work so hard for such bad pay and never get do anything by themselves?), after graduating from a high-end med school (OK, so that makes her a doc, I guess).

So she was nice and we talked a bit about ER-fun, which medically trained people love to discuss (truthfully, with just a few months worth of ER/trauma work, I'm usually behind a bit), and then she asked me about getting a job so we talked about real estate in Florida (those four words passing for a genuine excuse nowadays for most real estate job seekers), and she mentioned her parents had missed a chance to sell their house for $850K a year ago in Miami.

Yip, I said. Lot of that going around in Miami.

Its just too big for them, she said, now that my sister and I are gone. And my dad is gone Monday thru Friday, so what's the point of a big place?

Right, I said. What's he do?

And i expected her to say... "big shot lawyer" or "road-warrior consultant" or "techno-corporate brianiac in charge of tons of far-flung stuff."

Cuz who else is gone 5 days a week with an $850K (now on sale) house?

She said: He works for (a very major national bakery of tons of astoundingly good cakes and such). They have bakeries in (three cities, not miami), and he spends every week at one of them. He never went to college, just started at the bakery after high school.

Really? I said. So I turned to the friend who had brought her to the party, a guy I know, shook my head and said: "See that. Forget this MBA thing - the world's full of cool jobs."

So we discussed her dad for a bit, flushing out his resume so to speak: High school educated, spends his week on the road making stuff everybody just loves to eat too much of, then comes home on the weekend to his damn-near $million home in Miami, with a daughter finishing up her residency besides (I'm gonna go ahead and add that she, and therefore he, was black, only because I think it adds a few more rungs to the high school-grad-to-father-of-doctor-ladder)

Yip. Screw recessions. The world's full of cool jobs.

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