Peter Butler

I'm sitting here staring at an email from John Tarbell telling me to write my bio or else. I thought I was done with homework thirty years ago. So what have I been doing for the past 40 years? Well - here goes --

Someone once told me that life can be divided into three parts - I spent my first 30 years in school (am I stretching it to call the US Army an "educational" experience?) and the next 30 years trying to make a living. As I approach age 60 I'm ready for the next third.

After GDA I spent four years at Yale, where I managed to graduate in the top 99 percent of my class - but I had a good time doing it. After I won the draft lottery (it's always great to win) I knew my number was up and enlisted in the Army five days ahead of the draft board (pretty smart on my part - uh!) After learning how to blow up tanks, I became a signal officer and was sent to southern Arizona. I did such a good job at guarding our border from an invasion by Mexico that I got to spend an all-expense paid year in Southeast Asia dodging rockets. I decided I wasn't career Army (was there ever a doubt?) and applied to graduate school. Ten days after I left Vietnam I was in Hanover NH starting two years at the Amos Tuck School. After three years of drinking beer in the Army I got to spend more two years drinking beer in New Hampshire. The Army experience must have been good for something since I graduated with honors.

As I approached 30 I realized I needed a real job and took a position at Ernst & Ernst in New York. I found a place in Greenwich Village and spent two years working on Wall Street and living among The Village People and the Maharishi Yogi. After two years I decided I was never going to forgive New York for taking the Babe, so I quit my job and headed back to Massachusetts. For the last 30 years I've been living in Marblehead. In Boston I worked for another big eight accounting firm (not Arthur Andersen - thank God) and got my CPA. I left public accounting in 1975 and have never looked back. For six years I worked for Charles River Associates, a consulting firm. In 1980 I met Marie, the love of my life. We were married in 1981 and we moved into our "forever" house. As Dinks (dual income - no kids) Marie and I have enjoyed traveling. Marie was a successful computer executive -- her success allowed me to pursue a less-structured career. In 1986 I gave up working for others. (I always have had a dislike of authority - something I must have learned at GDA.) After five years of working as an independent consultant, I started a company with a partner in 1991. For the last eleven years I have been financing senior housing projects.

My career around nursing homes and assisted living facilities has given me an opportunity to see how people spend the last third of their lives (my advice - stay healthy). After watching people in their 80's wearing Depends and playing bumper cars with their walkers, I've decided that I had better enjoy life while I still can. Marie took early retirement in January and I closed my office in March. We're planning an active life for the next decade or two, spending up to six months on the road each year. We remain active in community activities and enjoy sailing, diving, horseback riding, bicycling and hiking. Marie and I hope to be active and healthy as long as we can. If the stock market tanks, we have a nice little trailer court picked out where we can sit out in our plastic lawn chairs and go bowling every Tuesday night. Actually, my plan is to live to 90 and to die when my bungee cord breaks.

Oops - There's the phone. Yes Tarbs, it's coming.....