Salary Survey Extra is a series of dispatches that give added insight into the findings of our annual Salary Survey. These posts contain previously unpublished Salary Survey data.
What if you could gain the whole world — or even just Wales — without losing your soul? The number of idle moments whiled away, in each human lifetime, guessing at what wished-for Gift from the Universe would bring the greatest happiness and satisfaction to an individual, is surely a mind-boggling tally. Yet most people never get tired of grappling with the question.
And though information technology continues to unlock secrets and wonders, to the increasing benefit of mankind, even IT can’t make every wish come true. For ordinary people living ordinary lives, then, wishing is not about miraculous fulfillment so much as it’s about expressing personal values. How do you look at the world each day?
Speaking of philosophic inquiry, the reason that we’re even getting into this is on account of a popular strip from the old newspaper comic Calvin and Hobbes. Here’s one place that you can read it online. The gist is that mondo daydreamer Calvin flips his lid when pragmatic Hobbes, asked what he’d want if he could wish for “anything in the world,” chooses a humble sandwich.
The punchline is too good to spoil, but let’s just say that Hobbes has his reasons.
At the end of our most recent Salary Survey, one of the Not So Serious questions resurrected the classic dilemma (with a few additional parameters) to find out whether certified IT professionals tend to fall more in line with Calvin’s runaway imagination, or Hobbes’ easygoing practicality. Here’s what we learned:
Q: You have one wish that will instantly come true with no strings attached. You can’t wish for more wishes. What do you wish for?
Perfect health — 36.3 percent
Infinite wisdom — 19.8 percent
A trillion billion dollars — 18.2 percent
Fortune — 16.4 percent
A sandwich — 3.3 percent
A private continent — 2.9 percent
My own space shuttle — 1.9 percent
Fame — 1.2 percent
We didn’t mention in the survey where the idea for the question had come from, so it’s perhaps not all that surprising that Hobbes’ great wish is among the least popular of all the choices. It’s more surprising that, in the age of YouTube, an era when Kylie Jenner can amass an estimated net worth of nearly $1 billion simply because a lot of people know who she is, “fame” ranks dead last.
Meanwhile at the opposite end of the spectrum, certified IT professionals are resoundingly in favor of perfect health. Optimal body function is considerably more highly regarded than unlimited wisdom, essentially unlimited cashola, or no-holds-barred luck. Take care of your bodies, people. The one you have now is the only one you’re ever going to get.