The Future Must Be Met

094

You have now entered my daily journals. These blogs serve multiple purposes.

  1. Provide me a record of what I’m doing with each day. Which is great, because I can’t remember anything.
  2. Act as a sort of syllabus for myself and others. I often want to refer to an article I read one day and can’t find the link. People on Twitch ask for relevant information on the apps, music, movies, strategy articles, etc. I bring up. This will attempt to link them to all of those referenced materials.

Since it is my journal you might find me writing very much or very little. It depends on how I feel. 

At the very bottom of each entry there is a running tally of everything I did or experienced in the year. If any of the entries seem obscure or odd it is because I am a fiend for data. I didn’t put out the Assassinato HUD on accident. 

I also post many pictures, graphs, pie charts, and memes because they greatly amuse me. Enjoy.

To understand more about what’s going on here read my recap of 2015 along with my plans for 2016. 

March 8th 2016:

Wake up. Do a lesson with my Filipino student. Afterwards I work with a college professor in the United States. I want to really bring my A game when working with someone so acclaimed in academia.

It’s wild to me how much poker has opened up my life. The professor and I had a really good session, and I felt like I really got through. I was really happy to help. I can’t imagine what other work I could have taken when I was younger that would have put me in contact with so many great people.

After my lessons I go take care of my emails. There’s a ton of them with The Professional’s Mindset being this weekend. I do bookkeeping.

I eat lunch, and get back to work. I get a couple emails about one of my projects having multiple issues. They’re really upsetting unfortunately. It’s mostly me being negligent and taking everything too hard, so I don’t blame anyone. I just get really pissed at myself sometimes.

I can’t seem to work. I’m slowed down mentally. I go outside and lift weights, do push-ups, stretch, and do some kettle bell swings.

I’m really fighting this lifeless enemy. I’ve been told by a doctor that depression is like the common cold.

I don’t even like the word. Yeah, sometimes I’m not in love with myself, but it’s not like I hate who I am in the midst of it. It’s just this film behind my eyes. There’s a pressure on my temples.

I take my vitamins and my medication. I shower. I don’t feel better, which is rare for me.

I go up to a local store to grab some onions. There I see churros. I can’t remember the last time I had churros.

I go home and have two of them with coffee. It’s incredible. I feel much better.

I do the test of my new webinar software with Zoom.Us. It works incredibly well. It’s so much better than GoToMeeting ever was to me. I end up talking with John about his new work for thirty minutes. Again, I don’t know where I’d meet all these people without poker.

Afterward, I work on my most recent blog post, and I prepare for the webinar on Saturday. I turn on Spotify’s recommendations and hear a bunch of good new music. I pop open a Battery energy drink. I spend an hour or so going through my bars and fixing them up again. The process is really rewarding. When you start hearing the beat in your head with each lyric lining up perfectly; that’s a real high. I’m sure I’d hate this if it were my full-time job, but as a hobby it’s very fulfilling.

I do a Duolingo lesson after unsuccessfully trying to upload a video to Youtube. Whatever. I’m doing podcasts tomorrow and the day after for free. That can be everybody’s free content.

I play with the dogs. I go to a guest room to meditate. I really focus on the breathing this time. I visualize a blank sky with my thoughts wasting into it.

I go to a depth I’ve never gone before. I have a memory: It’s a little too painful to repeat.

I open my eyes, startled. I’d forgotten. If I had remembered I didn’t recall how it felt. I’d buried it.

I saw a news story about new bathrooms for transgender students at my old Junior High. It kind of blindsided me, remembering how that place was. “Gay” and “fag” as insults were still used pretty often when I was a kid.

I felt really good seeing this transgender kid now had the option of using a single stall bathroom. I can’t imagine what growing up that way could be like.

We were just so ignorant when I was a kid. I acted out in extremely embarrassing ways as a child. I think many educators now would go, “oh, this kid has Asperger’s.” They wouldn’t have given me amphetamines with the ADHD medication.

I hate using that term, despite the fact I’ve taken medication for Asperger’s for over five years. There are poker players with extreme Asperger’s. They have considerable communication problems, and their social anxiety is incredible. I feel like I cheapen the word by using it, and take away from their struggle.

But that memory I just had: People didn’t know what any of this was back in the 90’s. We just thought a kid was weird and we left it at that. I don’t think anyone I grew up with or any educator had malicious intent. I truly think they just didn’t understand back then.

It was very painful growing up that way, especially considering what my home life was like. It really was a perfect. I had an operation on a tumor, it cut my throat, and my voice became this girlish high-pitched whine. I was overweight. I had Asperger’s, so I lived in my own world, and I’d talk constantly as if other people understood it. My chaotic upbringing exacerbated issues.

Then when I took Adderall I lost an incredible amount of weight. I was so stoned all the time. In my zone I didn’t speak much. With the weight loss and my being less annoying people were kinder to me. The message was clear: For anyone to like me I couldn’t be myself. I had to be high.

And when I made money people really liked me, and I really hated them.

Now, I look back: There were so many good people around me. Muslims, Mormons, Presbyterians, and atheists were kind to me. White, black, Asian, Hispanic, male, female, whatever. They were just good people. They said, “oh yeah he’s weird, but whatever. This is more fun.”

I’d just developed this inferiority complex. I was uncomfortable with myself.

My wife’s family were such people to me, even when I was a foreigner in their country with no job, I never wanted to have a drink around them. I never wanted to disrespect them.

I’m proud of few things in this life, but my in-laws never seeing the old me is one of them. It was a great opportunity to ship up, and I am not modest about this: I took it. I took charge.

My wife supported me so much, even though we were just dating then. She noticed my anxiety was horrible though. She’d hear about me running for two hours at a time. She took me to a neurologist who did a battery of tests. That’s when I got my diagnosis.

I took it pretty seriously then. But now everybody’s on “the spectrum.” Which is pretty hilarious. Everybody’s on a spectrum. Technically, I’m on the black spectrum.

Even though I take my medications religiously I have a hard time accepting the diagnosis.

I’m not sure if I could go back if I would change anything. The pain put a fire in me that’s still not gone out. I created the life of my dreams. The willpower to do that came from those experiences.

I love my life. Doesn’t everybody now have a “tough childhood”?

***

My wife puts on an Avantasia album. We’re going to be seeing them live in a couple of months. Neither of us are really Avantasia fans, but metal bands come here so seldom you really need to see any show that comes by.

The album is pretty solid. Not my usual cup of tea, but I can dig it.

While my wife works on a painting she’s doing I lounge and read. I’m getting into this new book, Mistrial, where Mark Geragos patiently explains in a very logical breakdown how incredibly corrupt the American justice system is. I feel like I finally understand what is going on for the first time.

March 9th 2016:

I wake up a little later than normal for my first lesson. That proves to be a mistake. I still put in a pretty good performance but I stutter and misstep a few times. I’m not happy with myself. If people are going to pay $200+ an hour for coaching it better be the best damn $200 they’ve ever spent in their life. None of the content was interrupted by my performance for more than a few seconds, but I don’t even like that. It’s embarrassing.

Afterwards, I go do the Smart Poker Study podcast. Sky Matsuhashi is one of the best hosts I’ve ever worked with. He apologizes for how new he is to all of this, but when he gets started I feel like I’m on a radio show that has been running for 10+ years.

I go into an incredible amount of detail on the upcoming webinar, the new book The Myth Of Poker Talent, and we also handle some strategy questions from listeners.

Afterward, I’m completely exhausted. I spent about three hours on the phone talking nonstop. My morning lesson was really intense because of how astute the student was. It’s sweltering hot. I lay down, read The Bible and The Washington Post. I eat fish with rice and beans.

The heat won’t let up. I feel worse because the water in my area lately has been going off and on. When it does come back it’s an odd color and taste.

I put on an album to start work to. I answer some emails, and crap out. I feel awful. This record isn’t helping. It’s a 30-minute orchestra metal crescendo.

I answer some emails, and then I can’t seem to get anything else done. I feel like complete crap. The last few days have been tough. Not in the sense that my life is difficult, but my focus has been off. Perhaps not having The Myth Of Poker Talent to focus on every day has made me feel lost. That really gave me a purpose and a direction for a long time. I really loved having that book in my life, even if it was some of the most difficult material I’ve ever written.

I realize the only other thing that’s been different lately is my water intake. Normally I drink eight glasses of this clean mountain water a day.

I go get some gigantic jugs of water and start hammering glass after glass down. Oh God, that feels better. Now, enough of the orchestra metal that’s been making me fall asleep. Let’s go in a death metal direction.

I head bang, and down more water and coffee. I feel better.

This blog makes me feel much better. I spend too much time writing in it every day, but thinking of your life in the context of a narrative is very powerful.

When I write here I’m very aware of what I’d never write down. If I don’t want to collect data on it and study it than I probably just shouldn’t do it. I don’t consider myself anybody extremely productive, but if you cut out all the Facebook, smoke breaks, porn, and web surfing you end up getting much more done.

I just came across an article on productivity by Tim Ferriss which reminded me of this. It’s a great article. That man is very honest. I’m sure everyone goes through his struggles, but it’s good to remind people they don’t have to be superhuman every day. It feels good those days you really wrangle a lot out of, but that’s not going to happen every day.

It really does boil down to what he talks about every day: “If this were the only thing I accomplished today, would I feel like the day were a success?”

For my sanity I need to stay busy during the day, but you can be slothful while constantly being occupied. I cannot stand laying around. I have designated times for that, and they are important. I didn’t realize that for a long time. You literally are recharging when you take time off. But when it’s my work days I want to go hard. I want to change my life. I don’t want to lay around and watch life change me. That fills me with much more anxiety than work ever could.

So it goes like this: The most important things, and then whatever else you can fit. If you haven’t done something for a few days then try to fit it in.

I’d feel good with the day if I did just one paid lesson and a podcast advertising the upcoming webinar. However, I need to pen a strategy article for my mailing list anyway, so I am going to write them an email previewing the webinar with a a good deal of strategy content thrown in.

I go through my bars and answer emails. I’m stalling I guess from the hard work. I go over my bars more and more. I’m talking with another battle rapper, a really well known one I’m friends with. I bounce some bars off of him, but I feel weird. My newest three rounds are the best I’ve ever written. They’re easy to understand, they flow well, and I’m really proud of the punchlines and concepts. I know the guy I’m talking with would never take one of my bars, but it’s weird to write something and to be so protective of it, especially when your usual business is about sharing as much as possible.

I go into my work mode and hammer out 2,500+ words in article format for the new webinar. I will use it as a preview article when the webinar goes on sale. My goal is to write 2,500 words a day for profit or otherwise for business. That can be some short story I’m trying to sell, it can be ad copy, or it can be a strategy article. It can’t be a blog, movie review, or battle lyrics.

I took a few days off from writing. That was not a good feeling. I like moving ahead. I feel better being back on it.

I eat dinner, watch TV, and go do an almost two hour video of me playing poker for posting on Youtube and Twitch.TV. I get a lot of great hands in, some Cardrunners EV work, and we even final table the $88 7.5K GTD.

At 11:00 PM I wrap up work. I started at 8:00 AM this morning.

Oh, but wait. I have to see if Facebook approved my second ad.

Nope.

I make some mac and cheese because I’m starving and white. While I’m waiting for the water to boil I do a Duolingo lesson and watch the Democratic debate.

March 10, 2016:

I wake up exhausted. I worked from 8:00 AM to midnight the day before. I couldn’t fall asleep till 2:00 AM. I woke up at 7:45 AM again.

I get up intent to work. I need to promote the hell out of these webinars. This is my new gig: I’m going to be doing much more of them. It’s been a while since I did one, and I’ve been off of Twitch for a couple weeks. I have to promote the hell out of this to get a good showing. That way we can get some good reviews and sell some copies off of the back end.

I start the day doing the new Oneouter podcast. I feel very on point for the entire hour. I pop open a Monster energy drink at 8:00 AM. Perhaps that helped.

Afterward, I start producing the rest of the free content that is going up today. The Facebook ad was finally approved. I get my final table of the $88 7.5K GTD on America’s Cardroom up on Youtube. I’m proud of that one. There’s a ton of great free content in that one.

I catch a bus and go down to a local cafe. There, I read The Bible, read through the newspaper, and read about 60 pages of Atlas Shrugged. I down espressos while I do it, until finally I decide to grab dinner. I get Taco Bell, my medication, and some groceries. I catch the bus back home.

There’s a stack of paperwork waiting for me. The Professional’s Mindset has had a very good turnout, but now I’m going to have to write back everybody, book their payments in records, put it on spreadsheets, and confirm their transfers. People have questions about the webinar. I also have a number of backing stables coming to me about teaching a number of their students. Obviously, high profile accounts like that require my attention. I have to print receipts for recent students. I have to send poker software poker students bought.

In the last couple of days I have published five articles, a free training video, and multiple podcasts. Much of it is just to promote this webinar. You can’t say I don’t hustle.

I’m completely spent. I worked a good 14 hours yesterday, and there’s no chance I worked less than 9 today.

I’m eating too much. I’m drinking too much caffeine. But I’m not stalling, watching porn, drinking, or smoking weed to calm down. I’m in control.

This is my element. Listening to hip hop, chilling, making money so I can buy my mom and wife a home, creating something that can last till after I die.

That’s really what I want more than anything: Security for the women in my life. I love to help people out. I love the thought that one line you write could change someone’s life forever. Yet, what I want more than anything is to just have my mom and wife be secure. If God forbid something happened to me I’d want my wife and mother to have a roof over their heads that was completely their own. I trust the family can help with utilities and groceries. It’s shelter that’s so expensive. The rent is what enslaves single mothers.

I want to be available as much as I can, and I think I do a good job of that, but my honest to God talent isn’t intelligence, talent, attentiveness, or perfection. I can out hustle anyone on this Earth. That’s my one gift. That’s my word.

I’ve come to grips with the fact I’m ineffectual. It’s pretty obvious I have to force myself to feel the emotions many others feel. I know it’s the women of my life who should be at the head of the family.

What that means is they shouldn’t have to worry about the bills. That’s my job.

They also shouldn’t worry about me going off the deep end, as perhaps someone with my genetic makeup would be more prone to do. So, while I must say I had a strong affection for drugs, I do not partake in anything anymore. I push myself hard now, because you have to strike while the iron is hot. I have to take care of business while I’m young, healthy, mentally sound, and without kids. Once they come into my life I can’t be unavailable all of the time. I can’t balance raising children with the kind of hours I work now. So, I need to save up for that time, so Daddy can take more hours to be with them.

I don’t have any regrets. Those mistakes were made by a different person. I feel incredibly good now. I know what I need to do. There are many poker players who can do what I can do on the felt. There’s very few people on this Earth who can teach like I can. I know how the free market works, and I intend to use it.

I learned at a young age there’s nothing noble about working hard and staying in poverty. I saw how many problems you can’t fix no matter how good your heart is, no matter how much you deserve it, no matter how much you need it. I never will willingly put myself in a position where my life or the life of someone I love is in the hands of someone else.

These long nights though…

I’ve been putting in 60+ hour weeks since I was 17. Maybe in my worst years of drug abuse I took an accumulated year off. That’s still a decade of 12 hour days, constantly.

The joke was always how much I worked. Then it was, “come on man, you think you’re too good for us?”

“Ah, you’ve changed! You don’t want to blaze with your boys anymore?”

“What’s this Jesus crap?”

Deny your religion. Poison your body. Stay with us.

Now they need a loan. Now they can’t make the payments on their one bedroom apartment. And when I don’t have it they all start looking strange.

They don’t know what I went through. They don’t know why it’s so important I protect the people I love from that.

I get to memorizing the bars. I got my rounds as tight as they ever will be. I memorize about 24 lines in an hour. It’s a little easier when you’ve been reading through them. The performance is horrible, but I can iron that out. The key is to get the whole thing memorized at the earliest date, so I can go through it a 100 times, get the right moments to breath, practice, and get it to the point of unconscious competence.

March 11th 2016:

My wife and I chill out for the day. We order breakfast, lay in bed, and read. At some point we take the bus to go to our studio. On the way we stop at a patacones specialty place. The fish is incredibly fishy, and delicious. The patacones are of course delicious. We get to the studio. My wife works on the new masters. I pretty much walk in, opine on two things, and walk out to go read more. Our in-house producer has been bugging me to lay down something. I did scant vocals for their new project, but I wanted them to move away from death metal growls, and thankfully they did. It’s much harder to sell something that isn’t exclusively clean vocals. I don’t think it really fits with their music either.

I need a complete day off anyway. This weekend is going to be insane.

I finish Atlas Shrugged.

51gfoUStvDL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_

Atlas Shrugged is one of those American novels you have to read. Much like my beloved people it is pompous, brilliant, uncompromising, reckless, delusional, and obsessively chatty.

It is also necessary reading because many people reference the text in the USA. However, after you’ve finished it, you will realize Atlas Shrugged is much like the Bible; one out of every four people who claimed to have read it actually did so.

For those who don’t know Atlas Shrugged is set in a dystopian future America where businesses are being erased out of existence by a Communist/Socialist takeover.

I love dystopian fiction, especially when it isn’t hell bent on describing a future where teenagers actually matter. Atlas Shrugged is special in that it described a dystopian future which, due to the age of the tome, has now become a dystopian past. There are elements of science fiction when inventions that don’t exist are described, but the story is so entrenched in the past it becomes a form of historical revisionism.

The fascinating gives way to stiff characters. The heroes in the book, all industrialist job creators, are as interesting as they are one-dimensional. They are principled, and the enunciate as much in their lengthy monologues. While I understand philosophical fiction I can see why this turns many people off.

Those who are desiring an actual narrative will be out of luck. While Ayn Rand can turn a phrase better than anyone her actual plot structuring leaves something to be desired. As the book goes in you will constantly be rolling your eyes at the next ridiculous turn the characters take.

If you go in expected some kind of dystopian caricature you will enjoy yourself. I found myself really enjoying the sniveling do-nothing liberals surrounding all the heroes, because incredibly they sound very much like some people who I’m forced to listen to every day.

The comedy and philosophy is very enjoyable, especially to anyone who has had to create a life for themselves. There are moments the plot takes some wildly fun turns, but it is inconsistent.

This is also a veritable tome. At 1,200+ pages you will be left annoyed by how often the late Mrs. Rand would wax poetic. What’s even worse is the wholly hollow anticlimactic ending to the entire affair.

I am not an adherent to objectivism as it is presented here. I do not agree with many of Mrs. Rand’s views. I found the protestations of her swinger lifestyle in these characters to be uninteresting.

That said, there is a romantic spell she casts here. She makes you truly believe at moments that man can create anything he puts his mind to. For that reason this book, while flawed, is a complete original. It is necessary reading.

57c23bd79bd044e530ad832fe6686842

After I’m done reading a book I probably always had a responsibility to read I look up Ayn Rand. I laugh pretty hard reading about how she was a swinger, an abortionist, and atheist. Her going nuts about her lover having another affair made me shake my head; I guess all her protestations of advanced mind frame when it came to sex didn’t come to fruition.

I read about the movies that were recently made, which everyone says were god awful. The creator said the poor reviews were what dragged his films down, and he was going to go on strike. I burst out laughing. If you read the book you’ll understand the overwhelming irony.

We go to a French cafe where I order my double espresso and hazelnut cookie with cream thing. I should probably learn the name of it sometime.

We’re outside with the rushing traffic, watching the world pass by. I’m talking about music with the studio head, and I’m talking with my wife about her business. We have the leisure time to just pop out and sit here, discussing life, politics, and art. It’s like Karl Marx’s dream, yet it was found from capitalistic ends:

…to hunt in the morning, to fish in the afternoon, rear cattle in the evening, criticize after dinner, just as I have in mind, without ever becoming hunter, fisherman, shepherd or critic.

We head back. I finish reading another book while I’m hanging out. Weird. I don’t finish a book for weeks, then get two done in one day. I guess I’m spending too much time reading the newspaper.

OB-XA132_bkrvmi_DV_20130410131131

I bought this book to support Mark Geragos more than anything, and not because I find him to be some admirable human being. I really know nothing about him. What I do know is his podcast Reasonable Doubt with Adam Carolla has taught me more about the criminal justice system than any amount of watching TV or reading a newspaper ever could.

I was skeptical I’d enjoy this book, because I had read so many bad books about the law which were clearly written for only other lawyers. This was not the case at all however with Mistrial. The writing is clear and oftentimes hilarious. The anecdotes are memorable and give you a great way of remember what is really going on.

When the two writers get into some of the more horrible aspects of the justice system it’s really sickening. Their fury is palpable, and you can understand why they’re so pissed about the rap defense lawyers get.

What was more remarkable was how fair they were to many people. They have a clear understanding of people’s motivations. They even explain many of the disadvantages some of their competition faces. You get the sense they have gone so far because they really do empathize with people.

The deconstruction of juries, prosecutors, and high profile cases is illuminating and extremely entertaining. I whipped through this book in no time. Highly recommended reading.

Afterward, my wife and I decide to watch a movie at the studio. We turn on A Time To Kill.

Time_to_kill_posterI do not feel capable of writing another long review, but the movie was enjoyable enough that I didn’t notice it’s 2.5 hour running length.

Despite the all star cast I felt the acting was a little stiff. It was enjoyable, but it also left me puzzled: Wait, a guy jumps out with a machine gun and mows down to people and a cop, and I’m supposed to cheer when he’s acquitted? I’d probably do the same thing if it was my wife who was hurt, but I wouldn’t expect to get let off.

March 12th 2016:

It’s the day of the webinar. I’m well relaxed. I order breakfast from my local high-priced diner. They make out the receipt in my name, because many of the people who order from it are business owners. I look at in my hand and go, “I guess I’m a legitimate business.”

I prep. I show up early. I put on public domain jazz for people to listen to when they get there.

From the jump, there’s a glitch. The jazz sounds tinny to everyone.

My recording software bums out on me.

 

The Professional's Mindset

After that, everything seems to come together. The webinar goes off with a ton of content which is actionable and can help someone become a more rapid learner and earner.

My only difficulty with my co-presenter was the time limits. We both had a ton of material. We’d been preparing this for months. We took several breaks, but we still went five hours.

Another issue that confused me was that some people seemed to expect that we’d have a ton of hand histories and strategy discussion. This was odd to me since the flier clearly said we were discussing the mindset.

That said, we got all of our content out. Everybody seemed to really enjoy it. My backup recording software got everything. It’s not the video quality I prefer but it’s more than competent. I’ll see if I can secure something better in the next couple of days. Yes, we had backups beyond the first and second tier, that’s how we run.

At the end of the webinar I divide up the money for myself and my cohort. Now that I know it’s done I can disperse what we made. I ship most of what I have in my Paypal to him. My cut has already been spent on my mother’s groceries, my mortgage, and health insurance.

Considering how much paperwork I still have to do with the follow-up email I probably didn’t make a ton hourly off of the project.

What’s more important however was that I enjoyed doing it. I love teaching in webinars a great deal. I love getting a concept, bringing some people together, and hammering it out in one go. That was a rush. That was great.

And now my mother is fed, my family’s medical care is paid for, and I still haven’t ever been late on my mortgage.

March 13th 2016:

Time to actually play some poker, and show these kids why they should be listening to me.

I start the day with my coffee, reading, and a large breakfast. I spend an hour cleaning my whole house. I shower and shave. When I come to my disinfected desk I feel like I’m ready to crush.

I play a very limited schedule, because with the hectic webinar schedule I just don’t feel completely relaxed and willing to play a succession of large buy-ins.

I go hunting for final table footage, and I do get some. I turn the recorder on produce a very good video episode of Assassinato Coaching.

 

Accomplished In 2016:

Lived In 2016: