Not just when I first started out. Quite a bit of time into when people were talking about me. I’m really not that well known, but there were a few months there where I suffered through a bit of spotlight.
I didn’t even live alone. It was 400 square feet, it had the ugliest green carpet possible. The bedroom, the living room and the kitchen were the same room.Â I slept on the couch. Some weeks ifÂ someone asked for a refund I might miss my rent, so I had to make sure no one ever did. That’s the real reason my products were supposedly so good. (I mean, I think they still are good, but there are those 21Â people to date who claimed to disagree with me.)
Â The worst of it was during the time I was most well known.
So just imagine. People are writing about your site in your favorite publication. Some of your own mentors admire you. You have all this grass roots appeal. Assorted fans feel like they aren’t worth your attention but clamor for it anyway. You try to tell people – “I might be very slightly famous but I’m worse off financially than you”. It’s like they can’t hear.
Here’s another confession. I’m not the only one. I know people who work from their hospital beds, people going to conventions but living out of their cars, some who can only use Skype to call people during certain hours of the day because that’s when Kinko’s is most quiet.
I never told anyone because people judge you so harshly sometimes. I was partly in my situation because when I was living my middle class life, I had to feed, house and clothe another adult who couldn’t support himself. Long story. But when that middle class life fell apart, he remained as my wingman.
It was partly because I have this weird condition that no one can fully explain. It’s mostly because my credit sucked so badly that I couldn’t even afford to file bankruptcy, and I was trying to pay back my debts.
It wasn’t a bad place. In fact, when the worst of my ordeal was over, I kept it as an office because it was closest to my walk-in traffic.
Here’s a good question – if I’m supposed to be so brilliant, why didn’t I use my skills to get me out of my jam? That’s the funniest part too. I was.
At one point when I was still living in that hellhole, I was making twelve grand a month, gross. At the time though, the cost of doing business was aboutÂ seven, with advertising and travel,Â leaving me with five. I had to take care of myself and the other person, pay overdue bills, and since I had no health insurance, pay medical bills. Fun for the whole family. It doesn’t stretch as far as you think.
So why didn’t I get rid of this other bloke?
Because I didn’t consider him a burden, and you don’t just putÂ a friendÂ out on the street like that. This is a person who quietly did for me all the things I couldn’t do for myself on a regular basis. Never once complained. I consider it an honor, a privilege, to know a person that cool.
Anyway. That’s my story. You’d never guess it to look at me. Boy am I going to regret telling this story.