Bob Newhart on Balancing the Books
Actor/comedian Bob Newhart (born George Robert Newhart in 1929) did have a go at the accounting world and was employed for a short time by U.S. Gypsum in 1954 after his discharge from the U.S. Army. Officially, Newhart worked in U.S.. Gypsum’s engineering department. In 2003 during an interview he told CPA, Dr. William E. Huffman of The CPA Journal:
“My theory of accounting was that as long as you got within two or three bucks of it, you were all right." When balancing his books each day, Newhart discovered, “I’d be there for three or four hours trying to figure out where the last dollar or dime went to. So finally, I’d just take it (money) out of my pocket and I’d put it in."
Always the funny man and ultimately wise, Newhart also said of balancing the books, “You’re paying me five dollars an hour to find two cents—it doesn’t make sense." He also held a job as an unemployment clerk making $55 per week and told PBS (American Masters Series), “Upon learning the weekly unemployment benefits were $45 a week, I quit and only had to come in to the office one day a week to collect it."
Newhart went on to much fame garnering three Grammys for his comedy albums and is best known for his two successful television sitcoms, The Bob Newhart Show and Newhart.
One might say just from looking at Newhart—he sort of looks (and acts) like an accountant, making this a good initial choice, but most fans are glad he didn’t stick to the profession!