Eighteen years ago today, I received a call right after the S&Ps closed. It was my wife, my very pregnant wife. Her water had broken and she patiently waited for the stock index futures to close before calling her futures broker husband to tell him this news.
“You need to come home NOW,” she said. “We need to go to the doctor’s office.”
I did not say goodbye, I just flew out of the office. I ran to the train and grabbed the 3:40 p.m. home.
Our child was on his way, but he was breech. We had to head to the hospital for emergency surgery for a Caesarean Section.
I watched behind a curtain which was way too short to block my view. My son Tim came into this world right before my eyes, butt first. His very first act was to moon the doctor.
Today, my brokerage days are done and Tim is working for me as an intern in my media business, participating in our Intern Education Series and learning lots about the markets and the people in them. In a few weeks, he will be headed to college to study journalism.
But today, on his eighteenth birthday, lots of things change. He can vote in elections. He can be arrested as an adult. He can buy lottery tickets. He can stay out after curfew. He can serve in the military. He can get married. He can have his own bank account. He can smoke and buy tobacco and so much more.
His life changes at 18. He is no longer a youth in Boy Scouts. He can’t ever wear the uniform unless he joins a Venture Crew or becomes an adult leader.
My life changes too. I now have another adult in the house, at least for a few weeks.
It is amazing how quickly it all happened. It seems just like yesterday that I was a futures broker with my very first desktop computer, a Windows 95 machine. Emini S&Ps had yet to be invented and electronic trading was in its infancy.
Today, electronic trading has grown up. Tim has also grown up. And now that I am not a broker anymore, my wife does not have to wait until after the end of the day’s trading session to call me with news.