About 9-10 years ago, I got my first real "grown-up" job. I was working for a financial data company based in St. Louis. Right after I was hired my company bought a New York based company and sent me up there to learn what I could and bring the support of that company's products back to the river city. I lived in Jersey City and got on the train at harbor Pointe, and got off at the World trade center. I ate breakfast, and lunch there from time to time, even got my hair cut at the WTC. From there I'd walk a few blocks to the office. I lived out there for several months, and loved it. I got to go to a ticker tape parade when the Yankees won the series, I had my first sushi in NYC, my first falafel, and Thai food. I went to CBGB and spend god knows how much money on records, and fred perry shirts. It was a great experience. I went back to STL, and after a year or so was offered a promotion. I could spend two weeks a month in New York and two weeks at home. I wanted a more technical job. I wanted a job that didn't involve direct customer interaction, or a button-down shirt and tie. I turned it down even though it would mean less money. I got the job I wanted after a few more months. The guy that took the first job, Jason, is a great guy. He's much more of a salesman than I ever was, but a little flighty. The account I turned down was Cantor Fitzgerald.
6 years ago today, the account manager for Cantor Fitz had a 9 am appointment at their offices in the World Trade Center. Jason overslept, and it probably saved his life. If I had taken that job, would I have overslept? That one choice probably saved my life. I think about that choice every September 11th. I guess it goes to show, take the job you want.. the money's not worth it.