the fiberoptic christmas tree at the hotel
My whole life I’ve pretended to enjoy parties, but for the life of me I don’t understand them. I’ve never had a worthwhile (or even audible) conversation at one, and alcohol just makes me sleepy. I would much rather be alone with a few people I care about than with 1,500 beautiful people that don’t give a fuck about me. I don’t like clubs, I don’t like bars, and I don’t like New Year’s parties. I have no interest or capacity for one night stands and I’d rather talk about WordPress or genetics than my non-existent job and car. What I really like is the moment when the CD skips, or the lights go out, or the food shows up late. I love it when the facade breaks down, cause that’s the only time I feel human. I’m not one of the beautiful people and I just feel self-conscious in that scene. That is to say, I didn’t go to Mount or Galle Face. I went to a hotel my Uncle manages in Kalutara and talked about girl problems with my 10 year old cousin. He knows about as much as I do.
Eat some Kottu and try my best to refuse the alcohol. Play some Playstation 2 and eat some buffet desert. There are some Russian girls with socks around their waist, which Amma of all people points out. I tell her to just marry me off if she wants but she says, ‘no, just a one night stand.’ And now my relatives are all laughing at me. Anyways, these are my New Year’s Resolutions. I mean, I’ve had them for a while, but this is the time and place methinks.
1. Find God
Went to temple last week and asked the monk if it was ok to use the word ‘God’ to point to the unity and wholeness that I felt as a Buddhist. He said it had mixed connotations, but was kinda OK. So that’s what I mean. I also asked if Nirvana was a personal experience, or whether it exists on its own. He said it was closer to the latter, so I guess that’s what I mean as well. Anyways, I’m a much happier person when I meditate and practice Buddhism. Also nicer and more social. That personal relationship with, how do you say, God is the most rewarding I’ve had in my life, and I miss it. I am going to try and get back on the banana boat and go to Temple at least once a week. Now I just meditate when I bottom out, but it’s something I should make time for in the morning.
2. Make Fuckloads of Money
Right now I make enough to buy all the gadgets I want, but as Cam’Ron says, ‘this chicken wing, new kick, cab fare, and movie money (small change).’ I’m still so far below the USD poverty line it’s not even funny. I don’t particularly need money for myself, but for point four I need quite a bit. As a subpoint, I’d also like to get out of Battaramulla and into some sorta central office. Websites and consulting bring in the money, but I’d like to get back to writing and doing stuff for me, or maybe even blogging full time someday. I started off doing sites for 50k, then 100, and now I simply don’t have time for the contracts I’ve signed. I really enjoy sleeping and television and something’s got to give. What I want to do next year is to get paid similar amounts for not doing anything at all. Everywhere I look I see that money trickles down, and I need to move upstream. This requires
3. Checks Without Commitment
I don’t want to be editing CSS or doing freaking layouts anymore. This week I got a check for simply referring a client. That’s my best design job ever. With this deal all I have to do is go out, meet people, and talk. After the sale, I don’t see the clients again, which is the exact relationship I’m looking for. Checks without commitment.
This magazine thing as well, I’m trying to build a brand (not IT Times, need to rebrand) and I’m doing every little thing, from picking up ads to kerning. This has to stop. Over the past 3 months I stabilized the revenue (at the expense of circulation). Now I have money in the bank and I managed to eliminate five, how do you say, redundant positions. Now I can hire a few good (expensive) people and get my ass as far upstream as possible. I’d like to get to the point where I can just sell the mag and develop the brand and not have to worry about production.
4. Develop People
And this is the main point. I think that any Sri Lankan business will run into the brick wall of Human Resources at some point. There’s plenty of work, but not enough good people to do the work. You can find bodies, but you spend as much time over their shoulder as you would to do the job yourself. To get anything done from my non-redundant staff I have to call like 4 times a day, which is almost not worth it. One of them is on the line, I tell you. Anyways, I can only come up so far on my own. I need to develop people that are stronger and smarter than me to go any further.
The reason I want to make fuckloads of money is so that I can pay people decent wages to a) work on my ideas and b) work on their ideas. If I can generate revenue on like 25% of those ideas and write off the rest as R&D it should be sustainable. Plus, with the Net, if you roll the dice long enough you might come up Google. Or at least get bought out. Anyways, I need human capacity to have ideas and carry them out, and those people have bills to pay. Hence money. My publisher is liquid, but it’s like water from a stone with all the asking and the paperwork. I need some independence. Specifically, I need venture capital to start a venture capital firm.
And those are my New Year’s Resolutions. Number One is important.