Bewildering Stories Guest Editorial
by Michael J A Tyzuk
The Society for the Prevention of Chartered Accountancy
The other day on the bus on the way to work I had the misfortune of being forced to sit next to two Accounting students from the University of Alberta.
They had just come out of a series of exams and throughout the course of the entire trip they were comparing their answers to some of the questions posed. As a result I was forced to sit there and listen to twenty minutes of second hand lecture on Economic Forecasts, Net Worth, Future Value of Investments, and other such meaningless dribble.
Leastwise it’s meaningless to me. I have a basic knowledge of some fundamentals of accounting, not through any interest in the subject but because I discovered very early on that there are times in this world where you will be forced to think like an accountant just to get by. This is especially important in a world that is becoming increasingly dominated by the notion of credit.
However, during my forced self-tutelage on the subject I discovered something very fundamental. Your average accounting student is a perfectly normal student up until the point where they enter their post-secondary training on the subject. They have active social lives and the usual teenage tendency to live their lives through the inside of a liquor bottle. When they aren’t drinking they’re chasing girls, and they occasionally tend to mix these two essential sports.
Again, they are perfectly normal up until the point where they begin their post-secondary training.
You see, the thing about Accountancy is that in order to be any good at accountancy you have to live accountancy. Accountancy must become the driving force behind your life. I account, therefore I am. And since Accountancy is a very boring profession at heart then Accountancy students start to become very boring people. By the time they graduate and earn their charter they have graduated from very boring to truly boring. These are the kind of people that Monty Python had such a good time making fun of. Now, Ladies and Gentlemen, please welcome Mr. Scum to the stage. Mr. Scum is a Chartered Accountant, and his hobbies are balancing the books and masturbation.
What’s even worse is that with our continued reliance on the notion of credit Chartered Accountants are becoming more and more necessary with each passing day, for no other reason than because they’re the only ones who really understand all the rules of the game. This is especially true for businesses, because there are so many smegging tax laws associated with businesses and they’re all so interconnected and convoluted that only an Accountant could understand them.
I’ve been having nightmare visions of late concerning the practice of Accountancy in general and Chartered Accountancy in particular. In my vision thousands of battalions of Chartered Accountants maraud their way from settlement to settlement. They are armed with Fiscal Reports and Economic Forecasts and General Ledgers and they’re Auditing people as they go.
It makes me shudder just to think about it. In its own way it’s even more frightening than the notion of American Imperialism.
Fortunately for us we have the means to stop it now. All it will take is a small amount of time and effort.
It is my intention to found a nonprofit charity organization whose purpose in existence is to slow the progress of Chartered Accountancy. The agency will be called The Society for the Prevention of Chartered Accountancy.
Chartered Accountancy is a disease, but with your help we can find a cure for the many millions of people afflicted with this terrible condition.
I’ve even planned the advertising for the Society. I envision the same kind of advertising as the anti-drug people used in the eighties; this is your brain kind of thing. On the left side, beneath the words “This is your brain” will be a picture of Robin Williams. On the right side, beneath the words “This is your brain on Chartered Accountancy” will be a picture of Jean Chrétien.
Personally, I think it’s a worthy cause and I truly believe that if I can stem the tide of Chartered Accountancy even a little bit, then I will have done the world one incredible favor. And that is a legacy worth taking to the grave.
You don’t think I’m nuts for wanting to do it, do you, guys?
Copyright © 2004 by Michael J A Tyzuk