Blue Shirt, Not a Science Officer

I now work with financial services people downtown in the Loop, and everybody wears a blue shirt. I wear a blue shirt, too, because dressing like the people I work with signals that I am one of them, even if I’m not.

In the morning I arrive slightly sweaty and out of breath, and push my bike along the sidewalk the last block to the office high-rise where I work. All the people with shoes that cost more than my last computer seem so pulled together, and I feel conspicuous, and a little swampy. I don’t feel like I belong, yet I don’t feel like a red shirt whose basic purpose is to clear the way for things to start happening for the people who are more important. It’s freeing to be there without depending on public transit. I don’t have to interact with other commuters smashed into a bus or train car being shipped down the line to churn money and ideas.

I make enough to be comfortable, but I want to learn how to make money like these blue shirted people. During my down time at work, I read about mergers and acquisitions, portfolio management, bond trading, and accounting strategies. It’s inspiring to know that making that much money is just something that people do, and being poor is not normal.

I took a quiz: “Should You Go Into Finance?” The answer: absolutely not. Or, okay, you could try it, but have a backup plan. Working in real estate was really fun, and lots of the skills I learned with real estate apply to financial services industry. Work hard, make contacts, follow up, evaluate the client’s needs and always be closing.

After a day in the office, I spend a few hours before a modeling gig drinking coffee and reading or writing, or I go to the library to read about computer programming and business. Because making more money is now my ultimate goal.

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