Sunday, February 01, 2009

How do you do, do you do, the thing that you do?

Ace wondered, via a blog-comment, what exactly an accountant does. I must say, I'm a bit in the dark too. Of course, I do have that self-imposed ban on talking about my work on this blog (and I only violate it once a week or so at the most), but I'm not actually working as an accountant right now, I'm an analyst, which is an entirely different kettle of fish, so I'm quite at liberty to talk about it.

I do, however, firmly believe that accountants are unnecessary in this world. Their very existence rather clashes with my socialist principles. You might wonder why I choose to do it for a living, but basically, it's because I'm good at it and people give me money to do it, and my socialist principles aren't really what you'd call a deeply held belief system. I'm still a working class hero, though - look, I've got a blister on my thumb and everything.

I would like to come up with a snappy definition of accountants, such as Ambrose Bierce or Samuel Johnson might have come up with, along the lines of 'someone who tells a company how much money they have and then takes every penny in fees', or 'one whose entire working life is devoted to bending the facts in order to justify his employment' but I can't think of a good one.

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