September 16th – September 30th, 2018
I reckon Wikipedia is the best website on the Internet. The amount of information is incredible, of course, but also how they’ve amassed that info. One of the best testaments to humanity I can think of. Oh, and today I learned on there that when Mary Queen of Scots was beheaded, the executioner lifted her by the hair for everyone to see. Then her wig came undone and her head fell on the floor.
Zapped today despite getting plenty of rest over the weekend. Was going to do a 24-hour fast but cracked in the afternoon, needed to get some food in me. Managed to do a good chunk of video editing, though not super satisfied with how this one’s coming out. But that’s probably just the tiredness talking. Everything seems worse than it is when you’re low on energy.
30-day challenge with the live videos complete. Today was 31 actually. And I’ll keep going, no sense stopping now. The whole reason I’m doing these is to increase my rate of failure. Watson talked about doubling it. I’m 10x-ing. Throw more ideas out there, see what sticks, what has legs, what’s hankering to be born. To have a few good ideas you first need to have a lot of ideas.
History of the workplace. Hunter-gatherers didn’t “work,” not in the traditional sense. Agriculture was the start, the farm was it. The industrial revolution moved us into factories. Blue collars became white and we sat at desks in big buildings, then got squeezed into cubicles, then dropped into open offices. Now we can increasingly work remote, free to roam once again.
It’s after midnight and I’m standing alone in the kitchen, knees bent, arms above my head, listening to Linkin Park. Been in this position for a few minutes, starting to sweat, legs getting shaky. Live call on my laptop, can see three other men doing the same thing, one at the beach, one in his living room, the other some place dark.
Been offered the emcee job at the Grow Remote conference in Ireland next week. Okay then, let’s do it. I’m a bit out of practice with the public speaking, but excited for the opportunity. Spent some time today visualizing how I want it to go, seeing myself up there all calm, confident, assertive, having fun.
In the sky listening to Ruairí interview Chuck gets me rethinking taxes. I haven’t paid in eight years. Haven’t had to, since I’ve kept moving every few months, never stayed any place long enough to be a tax resident. Wasn’t breaking any laws, accepted the trade-offs, felt fine about it. But perhaps there’s more to it than that.
I don’t always have the energy for it, but when I do it’s fascinating to just sit and talk with people about the work they do. Even people you’ve known for years. If they’ve been at it a while, they’ve easily put in 10,000+ hours, which makes them expert. Learned a lot chatting with a farmer today about hay and straw and silage and how much meat you get from an average cow.
One of the best things about travel is the perspective it gives you. For example, you hear people in Ireland complain how corrupt the government is, but you’ve seen and heard much worse than what goes on here. And a quick check confirms that Ireland is indeed one of the least corrupt countries in the world. For the most part, it’s a great country to be from and live in.
Visiting Cobh. Lots of history here. It was the Titanic’s last port of call. Spike Island in the harbor was once known as Ireland’s Alcatraz. And many ships have met their end in nearby waters, most famously the Lusitania, a passenger vessel sank by a German torpedo during World War I. Almost 1200 people died, many unidentified and buried in mass graves just outside the town.
Stressful week, keeping up with emails and freelance work and the video stuff while preparing as best I can for this conference and trying to be a good boyfriend and squeeze in seeing a few sights while we’re here in Cork and Kerry. Times like this I need to remind myself that I don’t have to do any of it. No, I get to do it. I choose to do it. And I can choose not to at any time.
West of Killarney, beyond the lake and over the mountain, there’s the Gap of Dunloe, a narrow winding road through the valley. Tourists can’t drive it. You have to go by foot or trap or bicycle. Almost had the whole place to ourselves this eve, strolled through for a couple of hours, admiring the views, ignoring the smells.
So here we are. The first ever remote working conference in Ireland. My first time as an emcee. Running the show for six hours in front of 100+ people at a fancy hotel. I introduce the speakers and moderate the panels. The latter has me sitting down with 3-4 folks at a time with no idea who they are or what questions to ask. Glad it’s me and not someone else.
Got back to Gran Canaria this eve after twelve hours and two thousand miles of travel and was excited to jump on another live video. Talked about the Seinfeld Strategy: if you want to get good at something, do it every day, don’t break the chain. These Momentos are an unbroken chain of 2,041 days. 42 consecutive days now for the live videos.
Sometimes I come across a YouTuber with 100k subscribers and watch one of their videos and come away unimpressed. But I try take it as a good sign: if they’re at that level, it’s only a matter of time for me. Or maybe not. Maybe I’ll never get there. But I’ll keep trying.
In the comments below, let me know which of the above Momentos is your favorite. Which can you relate to?
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These are my Momentos, vignettes I write daily and publish twice a month. They're incredibly self-indulgent and I'm surprised anyone reads them.
There's one for every day since February 27, 2013.