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In Corporate America, Every Day is “Bring Your Child to Work” Day

We’re all just playing pretend

Billy Frazier
4 min readAug 5, 2022


As kids, we assume grown ups have everything figured out.

After all, they walk around with their insurance cards, mortgage payments, and propensities for fine wine. (Did I mention they also like to use fancy words?)

Plus, you know, they somehow managed to keep us alive long enough to feed ourselves.

However, the older you get, the more one thing becomes painstakingly obvious:

Adults are just grown up kids.

After I joined my first full-time job several years ago, I quickly realized nowhere is this more obvious than in corporate America.

Don’t believe me? Put on your “business pants,” grab another cup (or three) of coffee, and get ready for a rude awakening:

Playing dress up

It’s time to trade in that cape and crown for a (pants) suit and, if you work for one of those “edgy” companies, dark jeans on Casual Fridays. Gone are the days where you can pretend to be anything you want as you run around the house in your underwear. These days, we call this being “funemployed.” And you know that briefcase you see your boss carrying to and from the office? Yeah, twenty bucks says it’s empty or they’re just using it as a really expensive lunchbox.

Made up languages

We all thought we were so clever hiding our sleepover plans from our parents, using Pig Latin and other bits of gibberish. Little did we know we were practicing for an entirely different kind of language: business babble. From “synergizing cross-functional teams” to “optimizing our return on investment,” we feel smarter for using these alien phrases when in reality, people are too afraid to admit they have absolutely no idea what the hell any of us are talking about. Can’t we just go back to “working well together” and “getting more bang for our buck”?

Show and tell

Ah yes, the single greatest source of fear and anxiety for every toddler — standing in front of the entire class doing our best to string together a few coherent sentences as we convince everyone what…



Billy Frazier

Writer. Designer. Fumbling forward through a creative career while helping others do the same. Subscribe: