I know, I know…it isn’t technically Friday yet. But it’s my Friday, so as soon as the ol’ quitting bell rings, I am dashing out of here to catch a flight home for a three-day weekend. I’m looking forward to it – a little family time (but not too much), a lot of good eatin’ (tamales and kolaches and brisket, here I come!), and a little bit of do-goodery with an organization that I’ve been involved with since childhood. All in all, I believe I’m in for a pretty stellar weekend.
Of course, the guy whose probably going to have an even BETTER weekend is Greg Smith, whose op-ed in the New York Times yesterday made quite a stir. Smith, who was an executive director over at Goldman Sachs, quit in the most spectacular fashion – by penning a harshly-worded screed on all the ways his soon-to-be-former employer was terrible. The diabtribe is a bit ridiculous – he doesn’t really say anything about Goldman Sachs that hasn’t been said before and he totally humblebrags his Rhodes Scholar status and a bronze medal at the Maccabiah Games but it does make an impact. Many of us have said terrible things about past jobs but most of us do it over drinks, on a blog, or in an email – not in the largest local metropolitan paper in the country!
What’s truly great about Smith’s missive is that he gave me some great Internet finds for me to with you today. The first is a brilliant spoof of the editorial, written from the perspective of Darth Vader. With lines like “the Empire today has become too much about shortcuts and not enough about remote strangulation. It just doesn’t feel right to me anymore”, any self-respecting Star Wars nerd will be rolling. And, over at NPR, they’ve pulled together a list of four great “I Quit!” moments that may just inspire you to pull a Greg Smith. Naturally, Stephen Colbert had a few quips for Smith as well, reminding him that there’s a “sacred trust” on the Street.
I sat in meetings that were all about taking over corners. How many corners do we need?
—Stringer Bell, “Why I Am Leaving the Baltimore Drug Trade,”
[FURTHER UPDATE] I know, I know – two updates to one silly little post is a bit much, but a dear friend who wishes to remain anonymous as they do not have the kind of job where one should be reading Vanity Fair online pointed me to VF’s own parody – Why I’m Quitting Pinkberry. Worth reading simple for the line that reminds us that Pinkberry is “world’s largest and most important remaining vehicles for Cap’n Crunch”
Whether you’re inspired to quit your job, writing your own (never to be published) version of all the ways your employer is the worst, or just enjoy giggling at someone else’s public display of disaffection, let’s all thank Greg Smith for giving us a little frivolity for the weekend!