Several weeks ago I was brought up short by the inquiry whether I was happy in my choice of a career of arbitration. During the hustle, bustle, turmoil, and struggle, one does not stop to ask oneself such a question. Unprepared as I was with a ready answer, 1 replied, vaguely, "I guess so."
When I had been asked the question (somewhat like those who stand on the scaffold with nooses around their necks), I had an instantaneous vision of the years I had spent as an arbitrator struggling with trivia and wearying detail. Only recently, in the course of a hearing, similar thoughts engaged me. At the age of 77, I am not unaware of actuarial mortality statistics. I found myself musing, while the stupefyingly tedious and tiresome testimony was being presented, that it would not be surprising, at my age, if I should shuffle off this mortal coil next week, the next day, or indeed, before the close of the day's hearing! Is this the way and are these the circumstances under which I should want to exit?