I had a Monday deadline. What with one thing and another, my (new) RAs didn’t finish or didn’t correctly finish turning my color figures into consistent black and white figures in Excel before the weekend.
Since I hadn’t actually finished writing the paper yet at that point I wasn’t going to have time to do it myself. So I thought… I bet this is something DC1 could do.
I asked DC1 if zie was interested in learning excel and fixing up some graphs for me and said I would pay hir, though I didn’t yet know how much. Zie said sure.
So DH showed DC1 how and we decided the exact shades and dottings and markers that we liked, and DC1 finished over the weekend in less time than I had expected (~3 hours total) and did a great job. Zie had really nice attention to detail, something I haven’t had in an RA for several years.
My mom never let me help with her rote grading or other work activities, even when it was mindless stuff I could easily do. I did do some data entry and cataloguing for my father for various of his self-employment ventures. It is legal to employ a child in a family business. Is my research a family business? This particular deadline comes with a check and I do have my own EIN. If I don’t have to do it, is it a hobby? If it is legal, is it ethical?
I salivate at the thought of my brilliant, careful DCs running Stata code for me. We’re not there yet, but man, that would be awesome. I know economist children of famous economists who grew up doing RA work for their parents and other economists for cash, and they seem to think they picked up useful skills, especially when that first non-economics major didn’t work out. A person who can code can make a tidy sum.
Did you ever help your parents out with their work? If you have children, have they helped out with your work?