Sometimes, the world seems like a very large place. That is, until you realize that the people you have met know other people you know and associate with even though they are all from very different places, and then you find out that your friends are sharing scandalous details of the lives of people you interacted with only once or twice.

I recently interviewed with a company that I decided in the end I was not going to be serious about, and the primary hiring manager seemed unusually kind and sensitive. If I had to be a little paranoid about this, I’d even go so far as to say that he may have been interested in me. While all that is flattering, what is not flattering is what I just learned about him through a friend, whose company partners with his. My friend told me that he found out recently through a mutual source that this guy was fired from a previous company for using company dollars to take out over 20 different women on dates, and also was caught sending naked photos of himself to female employees at that company. My friend said to me, “This isn’t the kind of person you want to associate with!” I laughed and said, “Well, it’s clear you don’t want me to associate with him because you’re trying to be my protector.”

Good friends want to protect you from crap. And good friends also want to make sure you know the truth. I told Chris this story, and he responded, “But that is just what happens every day.” He doesn’t think this is scandalous. I guess in some ways, it isn’t because the expensing of personal expenses — it’s very likely true (as I have personally seen from those around me without naming names) that people do this all the time; what ends up mattering in the end is who gets caught. This is the world we live in. Integrity is not a given anymore.


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