Recently, in a decision that I hope looks better in hindsight, I decided to jump back into public accounting. My old boss did his best to persuade me not to leave industry. Then, when my decision was final, he started a pool on how long I’d last in the public world this time. It was the right choice, though: the recent purchase of ProBuild left me with health insurance that cost more and covered none of Finley’s doctors, which would leave us about $20k out of pocket by the end of the year. Which, despite what many might think after looking at my beat up 2008 Subaru that’s been through three accidents and some serious hail damage, I don’t have sitting in my bank account.

It also didn’t help that my path to promotion required at least two members of my five person team to be hit by a bus (preferably not driven by me, since being in prison is frowned upon during annual performance evaluations).

While so far I don’t regret my decision, the little nuisances of public accounting life that had been purged from my mind since leaving Grant Thornton have brought themselves front and center. For example, there’s that obsessive concern to keep client data safe.

I mean, yeah, we don’t want to accidentally toss a bunch of sensitive information to the data stealing wolves, but the IRS has been losing around a hundred thousand Social Security Numbers a year and they’re still in business, so it can’t be that serious of a problem.

Here's a free and tangentially relevant picture

Here’s a free and tangentially relevant picture

Anyway, my new IT Department at some point must have sat in a conference room with a stack of donuts and gallons of alcohol to come up with every potential way data could be lost. Their great ideas have lead to things like allowing us to use LinkedIn, but blocking LinkedIn Messenger. Facebook is right out in the name of “security.” Because everyone knows that the number one source of company leaks is the easily traceable Facebook, followed closely behind by LinkedIn Messenger.

Of course all these blocks only work while you’re connected to either the company network or the VPN, so there’s nothing stopping me from taking my laptop from its docking station, logging into the local Barnes & Noble’s WiFi, and getting on the insidious LinkedIn Messenger from there. Security wise, the network block is about as effective as a split rail fence and a “No Trespassing” sign, but I guess if it helps our IT Department sleep at night, they pay me well enough to put off looking at the hundred baby pictures posted by my fifth cousin twice removed. Well, on my laptop, at least.

Where I actually get annoyed is with my phone. Due to my desire to be constantly leashed to the will and pleasure of my clients, I want work e-mail on my phone. Cue another list of of demands which, to paraphrase Finley, is the worst part of my new job.

It’d be one thing if I was using a company phone, but instead I have been given the privilege to spend $700 of my own money on my own phone only to lock it down with many of the same ridiculous demands they force on their laptops. I’m still allowed to use LinkedIn Messenger, which nearly completes my life, but I’m barred from using “unsigned applications.” Which, thanks to Google’s tenuous hold on it’s own mobile operating system, means anything not purchased from the painfully named Google Play.

For those not familiar with the Android side of the mobile operating world, Amazon has recently introduced a new idea in App Stores called (the not completely terrible) Amazon Underground. By using Amazon’s alternative, certain popular paid games on Google Play and the Apple App Store are completely free. They are also completely “unsigned.”

When Finley grabbed my phone after I started my new job, he started yelling at it. He’d stumbled upon a revelation as earth shattering as the realization that Santa isn’t real: Where’s My Water wouldn’t open.

It wasn’t just Where’s My Water, either. Toca Nature, Toca Kitchen, Toca Prostitution or whatever other Toca games are out there. None of them would open.

Immediately following that discovery was a full night of crying, then a daily complaint over this limitation. Nevermind that we own a slew of games on a set of iPads that we bought specifically so he and Kella would stop playing on my phone.

We’re talking really level of tragedy here. Daddy can start whatever new job he wants, but when it bumps into playing time, it’s Game Over, man.

Needless to say, I’m looking for a new job.

No, wait, that would be an insane reason to leave. But it is Finley’s solution. That, or asking T-Mobile how to hack my company’s firewall (pretty much his exact words).

When he realized I wasn’t quitting over this serious offense, he told me, very seriously, that “We need to thank the App Store for taking all our data.”

“How should we thank them?” I asked, wondering if I should also thank the phishers trying to steal my SSN from the IRS for their diligent attempts to sell my identity.

“By giving them money. Especially for their games.”

When I shot that idea down, he asked if he could use his “tens of hundreds of million dollars” to buy apps. I told him to go for it, but that his check had to clear before it’d go on my credit card.

On the plus side, I’m glad my IT Department can feel better about themselves for keeping my kid from playing Where’s My Water. I can definitely see how Swampy is a security risk that has to be locked down.

On the minus side, I’m not sure what I’m going to do now that my phone isn’t constantly covered with the goo that seems to perpetually ooze from every little kid’s fingers. I might have to dip it in peanut butter at least once a week to keep from missing out on that feeling.

Or I can just hand it to Kella to take another hundred selfies

Or I can just hand it to Kella to take another hundred selfies