The Kruelberg Kretin Saga - Episode VII: Blunderstone

Monday, April 02, 2007

The Kruelberg Kretin Saga - Episode VII: Blunderstone

The alarm clock rings and you jump out of bed full of excitement, even though you have any managed to scramble three hours of sleep. It’s 6:35 and you only left the office at three, working on Frank’s stupid precedents (yes, like all things in banking, they took longer to complete than you expected).

You have a shower, get dressed and buy yourself a triple shot cappuccino in the Costa coffee on your way to the tube. You have half an hour to spare and the tube should take only ten minutes, so you’re feeling good. Ordinarily, you would have called a cab, but the problem is, calling one is no guarantee of it arriving on time, specially in the mornings (probable because of all the self respecting bankers who cab into work). So, you decide to take the tube.

There is another reason for taking the tube. Nobody you know would even dream of seeing you in the tube, so if anyone actually does catch a glimpse of you, they will brush it aside as firstly, surely you will not be taking the tube and secondly, surely you would not be up at such an early hour.

You sip on your coffee as you walk from the tube station to Blunderstone’s offices. You pass the buildings that are the home of many a private equity shop and hedge fund along the way. You smile as you enter the lobby, sign in your name and make your way up in the lift, announce yourself again and get escorted into a conference room.

You check your phone, to make sure it’s on mute, and you notice a message form your Rebecca at Assbury Moron:

“You’re meeting Pete Anderson this morning. Don’t give away your contact details. Good luck.”

You first think to yourself how nice of Rebecca to wish you good luck. You then realize that what she’s really interested is that they continue having to deal through her, which is why she doesn’t want you to give them your contact details.

Anyway, your train of thought is broken by the meeting room door opening and Pete Anderson walking into the room. Pete looks more like an insurance salesman than a private equity guy. He’s got a square Amercian jaw and is wearing a button down collar smart casual polo shirt that’s more casual than smart. His chinos are neatly pressed and would have matched his shoes and shirt if he were still in his native New Jersey, Playing ball with his kinds.

“Morning. Pete. Nice to meet ‘ya”

“Good morning” you introduce yourself and wait for him to ask you to sit.

“So, you wanna make the move to private equity” he says with a smug smile on his face. What he’s really saying is “I’m here, you’re there, and you wanna be here where I am, and I have the power to say yea or nay, which makes me very cool”.

“Yes” you give him the whole spiel about how that’s where you want to be long term, that you are driven, motivated, numerically excellent, entrepreneurial, blah, blah, blah, blah and some more blah.

“Great. Mike, you remind me of myself when I was your age” says Pete, as you ask yourself how old is this guy really? He looks thirty five, must have spend a few years as an i-banker, whish means he’s really only thirty. He’s below the age threshold for Botox, so add two extra years to compensate and hey presto, you’re there. So you ask yourself whether it really was that long ago that this joker was in your shoes.

“You’re a great guy and I will recommend that we ask you to come in again and meet more of the folks we have here. One final question: what do you expect to get paid?”

You explain what you’re on now (add a 30% markup of course), and how you would want an improvement on that and a reasonable package of benefits that would come with a job like this. To that Pete smilingly responds:

“Mike, the best way to answer that, is to give you a little comparison. See, when I moved to London from New Jersey, I got the company to pay for my house. Back in the states, I had a huge mansion, with a yard, a porch, pillars, a driveway, a garage for two cars and a SUV, three floors, a pool, and a mailbox. I figured, I’m moving to London, all expenses paid, they’re covering my rent up to 10k a week, so I’ll get a mansion. What do I have now? No yard, no garage, no porch, no SUV, no driveway, no pillars, no mailbox, no pool and only two floors. Yeah, but I don’t live in New Jersey any more!”

Jackass. He wants you to move and take a fucking pay cut just so you can waltz around with a business card that says Blunderstone?

Damn it, you were so close to getting back at Frank. So close, and he’s pulled a fast one again.

Frank fucking Johnson, I’ll get you one of these days!


Anonymous said...

Great story

Anonymous said...

"“Yes” you give him the whole spiel about how that’s where you want to be long term, that you are driven, motivated, numerically excellent, entrepreneurial, blah, blah, blah, blah and some more blah.

Excellent. If I had a penny for each time an interviewee said this, I wouldn't need to work any more.

Anonymous said...