fauxklore (fauxklore) wrote,
fauxklore
fauxklore

Children and Work

This was the corrupted "take your child to work" day. The people I work with mostly have grown children or have ex-spouses with custody, so there weren't kids around my office. (Our boss has four children, but we go weeks without seeing him. He might very well have brought one or more to his other office.) Well, there might have been during the numerous hours when I wasn't there because I was at a meeting. The attendees of that meeting apparently thought it was "behave like a child at work" day.

I referred to this as a corrupted event, because it started out specifically for daughters and specifically because some study found that parents were several times more likely to take sons to work than daughters. Another issue I have is that most companies now put on some sort of special children's events, so it isn't like the kids even see what work is really like. They apparently had face painting in the Pentagon courtyard, for example. I admit I was amused by the security notice that pointed out that "these are our co-workers children, not enemy agents" along with admonitions to keep children from seeing sensitive information.

Anyway, I remember going to the office with my father at least once or twice a year. Sometimes it was just me, but more often my brother was there as well. It was a big deal because of the commute, which was great fun back in those days of double decker cars on the Long Island Railroad, followed by clinging to Dad on the subway. He usually put us to work checking arithmetic with an adding machine. There was also an obligatory stop at a job lot to buy a new toy. And sometimes we met my grandfather (and the woman he was living with, not that my brother and I were supposed to realize that) for dinner afterwards, inevitably at Lou G. Siegel's kosher restaurant in mid-town Manhattan.

I also remember riding my bike to my mother's office when she was selling real estate. I can't say that any of my exposure to the work worlds of my parents had any particular effect on my career choices or, for that matter, on my idea of what work is like. I certainly never expected I would spend my days going to meetings and writing email, especially since email didn't really come into widespread use until after both my parents had retired. Meetings, alas, have been around since time immemorial. In fact, I sometimes think that the real reason the dinosaurs died was because they formed committees to decide how to evolve instead of just doing it.
Tags: work
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