Quote of the day: “I always wanted to be married to someone who was home every night in for dinner,” she said. She wanted someone like her father. Instead, I was like my own father. Absent. Clueless. - Frank Niro
The Great Light
I wasn’t the first to discover the concept. And the partners at Ernst & Ernst didn’t invent it. It was a universal truth pointed out as far back as 1897 by humorist George Ade in “The Fable of the Subordinate Who Saw a Great Light”. But the notion was clear to all involved: bust your ass for as long as possible and you might become part owner of the firm. No matter that one in fifty new employees, maybe less, made it that far. It didn’t even matter that my true aspirations where oriented toward the health care field. I still busted my tail. I did it with great sacrifice and significant risk. But I didn’t know it.
Thirty-One consecutive Saturdays went by without being home. Seventeen Sundays in a row perished the same way. Weeknights were just that, nights. I arrived home at nine o’clock, maybe ten. I was doing it for them, I told myself. It was my responsibility as bread winner to advance as far and as fast as I could professionally, wasn’t it? I went from being totally disabled and dependent on my wife for everything, to an insensitive, self-absorbed, incurable workaholic.
It’s no wonder Chris decided she couldn’t take it any more by the time Richard was a year old. Who could blame her? “I always wanted to be married to someone who was home every night in for dinner,” she said. She wanted someone like her father. Instead, I was like my own father. Absent. Clueless.