Training’s over, and you’ve just hit the new group. You’re getting to know your bullpen-mates and you’ve picked up a few bullshit staffings. You’re settled into your new apartment in Murray Hill (no roaches yet!) and you’re loving the nightlife in NYC. You head out to the bars with your newfound work bros on Thursdays for happy hour. Life is good, and Joshua Tree fuckin rocks.
After Labor Day, things start to pick up a bit...
You just joined Equinox (cuz you’re a young stunner) but you haven’t been back in awhile. No worries – your right shoulder is still jacked from the constant weekend fist-pumping. You pulled your first late night and spent a weekend in the office doing some internal drafting. You’re picking up the modeling, but still making some mistakes. It’s all good, because you’re working with some understanding Associates. Ease into it.
Happy Halloween, motherfucker. That internal drafting you were slogging through last month has turned into a live deal, along with six other new projects you have. Your once-understanding Associate is running short on patience, ‘cause for some goddamn reason you’re still trying to wrap your head around purchase accounting and how it flows through the model. You haven’t seen your roommate in a few weeks, and your girlfriend is probably seeing someone else.
Fuck Seamlessweb. You’re 3 months in and you’ve already tried every type of sushi/barbecue/pasta/healthfood on the site, and you’re tired of eating out of Styrofoam boxes. You spend Thanksgiving in the office preparing for a pitch that ends up getting postponed. You missed Homecoming and you’re starting to wonder if you should’ve stayed in school for an extra year to get a master’s or something.
Dirty gray snow lines the streets. The subway is constantly under construction. Cabs are monopolized by overweight tourists laden with Macy’s bags. What the hell happened? New York was awesome in the summertime. Where did all the girls go? Where did the last four months go? What day of the week is it? The dark days of winter have set in.
You get your first headhunter call. Yes, oh god yes, take me away. Hedge fund. Private equity. Corp dev. I don’t care, just give me some hope here. Didn’t you fight like hell to get this job in the first place? Well, thank god you got a deal under your belt in Q4, so you can put that on your resume. Don’t want to go into buyside recruiting season with an empty CV. Wait, didn’t I just start my current job a few months ago?
Happy Valentine’s day. Your girlfriend dumped you three months ago, and you haven’t gotten laid since, but you’ve barely noticed – time flies when you’re having fun, am I right? A handful of Associates got laid off, but the Analyst class is spared. You pretty numb to it, though – you’ve already had a few friends from training quit to start t-shirt companies or pursue a career in bongo drumming.
You hop out of the shower one day, dry yourself off and pull on a pair of pants. Rrrrrrriiiiiipppp. That’s the pants seam giving out – worn from a combination of shifting your slouchy sitting posture and gaining 20 pounds from eating Seamless 7 days a week over the past few months. Your Equinox membership card is buried in the corner of your cubicle, under a pizza box and a stack of PIBs.
The sun is shining a little brighter. A wave of midmarket buyside firms call you for interviews, and you bomb all of them – but it’s okay, because you’re want to get into a megafund. You’re not really sure why, but you just know it will be so fuckin awesome, man. Spring thaw has begun, and the sweet smell of rotting garbage is back in the streets.
You found that Equinox membership card and started getting up early to hit the gym. It’s a New You. According to the math, you’ve paid approximately $50 per visit, but no matter – you’re going to get in shape, dammit. All of the analyst bros are getting a Hamptons house this summer, and you’re planning to be up there every weekend. Gotta get ready to flash the abs at Pink Elephant.
Summer analysts! No more PIBs!
The dog days are here. The line at Chop’t is a mile long. Your feet smell bad from going sockless Monday-Sunday. You’re a little irked that you haven’t been getting your money’s worth on the Hamptons timeshare (although you’ve slacked off on the New You movement and you’re still pretty squishy – oops) but it’s summertime nonetheless and the hours are getting better. You finally feel like you’re in the zone and doing your job well. You’re a veteran now and you’re looking forward to some fresh faces to join the group, so you no longer get the shittiest work.
Your Analyst Countdown.xls file shows 50% to go. O happy day. New first years join the group, and you nonchalantly breeze them through model training,training, resource training. You look at them with a strange combination of nostalgia and regret. How long until the optimistic glow on those faces turns to dark cynicism? Which one will flip out after their first all-nighter and quit with an angry email blast? Who will be the ultra-intense kid who takes every staffing, works every weekend, and throws everyone else under the bus? Which one of these is the nepotism hire? Who will be the first to get a PE job and check out super hard?
Most importantly, what time are we getting the fuck out of here? First rounds on me at J Tree.