pride and pleasure in acceleration 

From Plutocrats: The Rise of the New Global Super-Rich pg 52-53:

One badge of membership in the super- elite is jet lag. Novelist Scott Turow calls this the “flying class” and describes its members as “the orphans of capital” for whom it is a “badge of status to be away from home four nights a week.” The CEO of one of the most prestigious multinationals recently climbed Mount Kilimanjaro with his daughter to celebrate her graduation from college. He told a friend the two- week expedition was the longest they had ever been together. “They make a lot of money and they work incredibly hard and the husbands never see their children,” Holly Peterson said of the financiers of the Upper East Side. Their lives are driven not by culture or seasons or family tradition, but by the requirements of the latest deal or the mood of the markets. When Mark Zuckerberg rebuffed Yuri Milner’s first approach, the Russian investor, who was already a multimillionaire, turned up at the Internet boy wonder’s office in Palo Alto the next day, a round- trip journey of twelve thousand miles. In November 2010, the number two and heir apparent of one of the top private equity firms told me he was about to make a similar journey. I was a having a drink with him near Madison Park on a Wednesday night. He told me he needed to leave by eight p.m., because he had to fly to Seoul that evening. He planned to make the fourteen- thousand- mile roundtrip for a ninety- minute meeting. His putative partners had invited him to Korea just forty- eight hours before, on the Monday of that week. It was, he told me, “a test of our commitment.” When the European sovereign debt crisis came to dominate the markets in 2011, New York traders started to set their alarm clocks for two thirty a.m., in time for the opening bell in Frankfurt. Some investors in California didn’t bother going to bed at all. Wall Street e- mail in- boxes give you a flavor of the working lives of financiers, at least as they perceive them. In the spring of 2010, when the Obama administration first proposed a millionaires’ tax, an anonymous screed pinged its way around trading desks and into the electronic mail of a few journalists. It begins with the declaration “ We are Wall Street ,” and goes on to describe the intense workdays of traders: “We get up at 5 a.m. and work till 10 p.m. or later. We’re used to not getting up to pee when we have a position. We don’t take an hour or more for a lunch break. We don’t demand a union. We don’t retire at 50 with a pension. We eat what we kill.”