2016-07-02

Shame

Shame. Shame never changes. Contemporary texts remind us of the trope. Ding a ling. Ding ding ding, ding ding. Shame is the social mode of fear. Fear of sickness, fear of death, fear of poverty - fear of solitude... (fear of ellipses?) a characteristic of many social beings. Aversion to shame drives subjects to braggadocios heights. Shame brings society to stare at idols of strength, power, savvy, skill. Shame brings us to worship at the feet of boredom. Without shame, we would crumble, lawless winds aggressing. Shame is such weakness. Shame. Shame. Shame...

2016-07-01

Yawn 4

An evening of small talk. A bit of personal housekeeping. I have a lot of housekeeping to catch up on. No significant progress otherwise. We're officially in purgatory.

/


Wake. Wash. Administrative chores. Psychical evaluation of some staff. Data recorded. Reflection. Redesign.
Let's see what gets in the way of that plan.

/

My dear lady with the hidden heels. You were already a giantess. Now you're simply "up there."

/

OK, next fire. We're hiring accountants again!

/

Friday run.

/

Enforced feeding time. Then chores.

/

Social worker: I think you abuse the term 'social work'.
Me: Look, one should be able to run an organisation by email. Having to step onto campus to engage in grubby chit chat and negotiation is completely normal for a startup. However. It's still more socially engaged than sending email, so as far as I'm concerned, it's social work.

/

Done with chores. Wither rest and redesign?

/

This project has officially reached ridiculous proportions.

/

Red or yellow alert? Decisions made but I expect to confirm comms soon. Time to get up for networking. Some old family friend / babysitter popped by the office.

/

Looks like a yellow. Need to hire for August anyway.

/

Awake for no good reason. Back to bed.

/

Reinvention of wheels. More planning. Less sleep. Such are the circumstances.

/

Just to briefly reminisce. In May we hired two great staff as the backbone of our executive team. on their first day at work, I initiated an orientation, assigned some homework, and promptly left for the first vacation I've had since we got serious about this project one year ago. I figured the following month would be hell, so I should take time to visit loved ones and just look at pretty things for 36 hours in a nearby resort city. So that was the weekend off. Right on schedule, June was hell to pay. The entire month was spent mediating a half-dozen senior staff disagreements, twiddling with capital controls to detect and mitigate immediate systemic failure, and haggling with old and new investors alike. What a zoo. Of course, I set it up and delegated bits of it here and there, so ultimately all errors of judgment fall back upon me. Anyway, it's important to be nonchalant in times like these as I find that work can easily get hampered by sentiment. I demand less sentiment, and more productivity from myself. But that's always difficult when the nature of work is managing the sentiments of others... as I must spend hours each day modelling their sentiments, analysing strategic opportunities, and engaging with these sentiments to effect change upon our organisation. Well, well. I remain appreciative of all the help we have had from all stakeholders, internal and external.

X: Lol first taste of management. More to come! Kipidap!
Me: Boring. Nothing new. I have been doing this shit since form 1.
X: Lol really? Doesn't look that way from your post. By right if u have been doing this for a long time you should know this kinda stuff best kept in a diary not on fb for public view :p
Me: It is called public relations. You must always be selling.
X: To me it's just shows ur poor management skills to your investors / stakeholders
Me:I am certainly not shy about that. That is the position of my product :p
X: The only thing to be ashamed of is shame itself. ;) That's why most people around here disappoint me. Too much shame. Ding a ling. Ding ding ding, ding ding...

/

Unit online, and reporting for duty. OK, who else is at work?

/

Well at least reporting has resumed, and new information is tricking in. And today I got more sleep than I have had in any of the past ten days or so. So yay.

/

Everyone's a smartypants, from within and without the organisation... that's wonderful, but no one's doing anything about it. If anyone wants to implement some of these great ideas, I just manage it as venture capital at the level of individuals' wages. No biggy.

/

If a plane's missiles fail, there are guns, if the guns fail, you can kamikaze. So every staff's utilisation eventually stabilises at their level of competent delivery. :)

/

X: I hear Z is in DefCon 5? The place look great from the outside.
Me: We've been between DefCons one and two since February. It's a startup - the default is supposed to be three. Four and five don't really exist until you've paid back all initial capital.
X: Are you getting enough sleep?
Me: Not less than before, no... just the usual. :P
Y: There must be more that we can do.
Me: Well, I'm running at 100% every month, so you're welcome to do more if you've been holding back.
Y: Staff should be at 100%, owners should be at 200%.
Me: Negative. If you're at 200%, you have a language error.

/


I tend not to do well in competitions, because I don't care much for winning. Sometimes I find myself ahead of the pack, but it is often accidental. Mostly I concern myself with losers who want to win but can't. Why do you feel that way? Why do you value winning (why do you retain the construct of a race)? How can we help you to get what you want? Those are more interesting questions.

/

Let's see how long it takes to rebuild a financial controller. Three candidates in talks. Not particularly optimistic. On the bright side, I stopped caring many months ago, so I can still focus on being a broker of opportunity. :)

/

X: You're the brains of the business. It needs a heart.
Me: Negative. The business is designed to have a heart of steel. I am that heart. We're looking for brains, because the same actor can't play both roles at the same time.

/

Installing new management trainee...

/

I got more brushes. Who wants to paint?

Yawn 3

Meeting minutes.

//

"We're concerned that you're overworked."
"And how would you wish to remedy that? I can only work until I'm exhausted, and then, the end."
Every day is a good day to die. :)

//

"Can we not put my photo on the company page?"
"But you work here."
"Yes, so where are the indepth profile write-ups of staff who matter? I built this place. You're in my world now - no one needs a reminder."
‪#‎trainman‬

//

Too many conversations, on things that don't matter, so perhaps, soon it will all be over.

//

Running simulations and standing by for more trauma. Not sure if these are good simulations.

//

If the organisation isn't relaxed enough to change models on a weekly basis, the organisation is probably too stressed and should do less work.

//

A day of absenteeism and trivia; and a smidged of analytics and proposals. Back to bed.

//


Reflection on operations: it's important to stagger the release date of our dramas so that we don't get clusterdrama.

//


Are we there yet? :P

//

And then she's gone.

//

Well, today's job is done. I'm surprised that I'm this calm about it - but I suppose that's what a couple of decades of training are for.

//

Top candidate is LUD.
Staying up late to explore all possible futures... despite limitations on rate of computation.

//


"Are we in danger?"
"We've been in danger since I talked about it in February."
"No one believes you because you're still walking."
"Well I'm still walking because I believe it's still dangerous. Otherwise I would be sleeping."

//


Attempting to load previous day's memories...

//

All said and done, trying to be normal and to focus on commercial profit is going at a "normal" pace, which is slightly comforting. Year 4/10 now.

//

Flushing memory.

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Too much corporate finance, not enough marketing :P

//

On salesmen:

Every other day or so, I run into someone with great talent, whose feet I may worship at in the future. And I must tell them that I have nothing to offer them. It is simply not our time.

//

I grew up in my dad's office, and I still haven't watched The Office.
‪#‎totd‬

//

Plans provide foresight. Implementation provides certainty. Never shall one be inferred from the other.

//

While I seek a normal, uneventful, commercially viable life... I remain unstimulated by the notion of casual friendships, piety to families which I do not love, and amassing great wealth. Perhaps it is time to focus on the former, and to avoid the latter. And perhaps it is time to stick with the latter because the former is too easy.

I am reflecting on a recent lack of sleep which has precluded fine thought. I operate through the days, mostly in fight or flight, and can no longer look my lovers in the eyes - their faces have then been removed from my devices, as it pains me to contemplate their possible emotions.

Perhaps one day soon, I will seek their minds again.

//


Let us find out what the new day brings. Havoc? Catastrophe? Those are always safe bets. Joy? Boredom? Peace? Also easily contrived. The only way to find out, is to open one's inbox... though nowadays, every app has an inbox, so we are on the order of inboxeS, daily.

//

Using traditional Chinese concepts... coffee will be heaty when concentrated, but it can be cooling once it reaches a particular dilution. It's just the brew ratio.

//

!@#$%^&* grenades...

//

Resting.

//

Documentation for office. Hand holding for staff. And if nothing new crops up, maybe get enough rest ex-officio to start designing better roles in-officio on the weekend.

//

So people have this notion of "some one I know, who is close to me," like a parent, or a sibling, or friend. This knowledge of other people is a fluid model. Now people don't often believe it when you first suggest that their knowledge of other people is something similar to some other physical phenomenon they have modelled on a spreadsheet. It makes them feel less human - and that is an incorrect approach to the facts. The better approach is to acknowledge that your knowledge of most things is actually very similar to your knowledge of your closest human relationships. And if you don't feel close to anything, it simply reflects on your approach to that thing.

//

Time for breakfast.

//

Should I make Star Wars slides for tonight's staff meeting?

//

Accountant installed. Check. Still having a good time. Front of house staff meeting. Check. Kids still having a good time. Kitchen hasn't walked off yet. Check. OK, I wonder what's going to break next. It's been an unusually peaceful day.

//

Accounts: I have yesterday's numbers.
Me: I've updated the directory.
Accounts: OMG
Me: Are we dead yet?
Accounts: I still see yesterday's...
Me: OK phew. Press F5...

//

Stories of Women

Memory dumps en route to falling asleep. I suppose that if I'm going to jot down one story about a woman, then I might as well jot down a whole bunch of those, so that there's less information disclosed about which one I care for, more or less.

Pink flip-flops on pale feet, frizzy hair on a waif in denim shorts and stripey tank top. Not well fitted - a casual presence. Leaning on the rail, on the long descent down Lavender. Large paper cup in hand and nibbling at the straw. Dunkin Donuts, it said, the cup. We wait in line to buy tickets from a robot. Someone ahead take a long time. I ask, "will this machine take a fifty dollar note?" "No," she says - French? Short enough perhaps to be fourteen - pitch of voice corroborates. Not yet legal. Maybe legal. She sends me to the ticket counter, where I buy a reusable card. She asks if I'm okay, then moves through the turnstyles. At that time, I wished I had the energy to talk to her, but underslept, rushing for a meeting, I just watched her examining signboards, and I made efforts to stay out of her way. A memory from the last holiday I took from work.

Aged well, probably in her mid-fifties. Baby's got back, in a fitted dress, with just enough heel to make it clear that she knows where to place her feet without looking. An athlete, perhaps, eyebags dry... a sign of too many strange nights past, with wrinkles indicating that a pensive smile is often to be found there. Crows feet, perhaps. Pastel coloured facepaint. The slightest blush. She knows she's watched, and a firm smile with stern eyes graces an ardent passenger, riding the sight of this beautiful woman. Just another regular customer.

My love, first in the first world, what have you been doing? Is it freeing, your study of opportunity in the walled garden? Do you find the men intriguing, or mostly just oppressive? You spoke of a mediocre oppression, which we both know to be common among facades. We know you will not receive these messages, and so I know that these can only reach you through minds other than your own.

My love, second in the first world, we both know how you are doing. Is it opportune, that freedom in the walls? Are your prisoners contained, and more importantly, are you now unguarded? How many men have you taken? How many women? You spoke of an untenable perseverance for great fortune. Does it befall you in a timely manner? We know that you, or someone like you, still receives these messages. But you never send word home. The last I remember, was that you enjoy these readings.

My love, first in the third world, have you found peace at work? Does it still fall upon you from timezones far away? When will go home, and be with your lover for all futures conceivable? You were so happy together.

Nothing triggers theatricality, like a woman who turns up at your desk during a meeting, wearing the dress you took off her back the night before. You don't want to look at her, but she's smiling at you. And you know she doesn't care - it's already been discussed. But polity requires that you stand up, and deliver a greeting. Put a hand on her shoulder and give her a tour of the goods. Talk about her mother. Sell her some cake. Return to the meeting. And again, she comes by; stand up again. Another farewell. The two dozenth goodbye in as many years. And that has to last a year. Maybe two. Or three. Textbook smalltalk. Ho hum.

We spent too much time in that car. Heading into the darkness on mountains. Climbing hills over the city near sunset. Dodging stupid Malaysian weather. Driving you home. Driving you away, from home. It could have been better, indoors. We never had enough, of the great indoors. We drove to bus-stops, to lakes, to parks, to cafes, to nowhere. Our world was filled with beauty, and order, and insight. We were the Vogels. In the dark, dodging cops, who tapped at the window and opened the doors, who drove past silently in their blue lights. Peering through glass, thunder, and moonlight. Overlooking cities, overlooking the sea. We strode through streets of rubble, built by our forefathers, anguished by our peers. We held each other, for tears. We were always sad, in the best of ways. We always prepared.

You considered buying my time. The offer was lousy, and I found better. Stylish and unpretty, was how I remembered our brief solicitation. Our worlds then collided, in our town - tinier than the space inside you, reserved for me. I left another. I staked you out. I warmed us up, and we went out, and you came over, and our courtship began. You drove by and picked me up, by a street sign, reading. On the same street we met, you spoke of submission, and I took over. We walked for miles together. We swam. We rode bicycles. We flew over islands and seas. We let each other in. But you couldn't grasp me, and soon you hated us. I would clean and put you to bed, carry your bags on strange streets, and tie your shoelaces in faraway places. Your resolution was unyielding. After years, a fleeting friendship, an itinerant romance, I helped you pack. Leaving. Kissing, we folded into our finale. And over a year later, slightly drunk, you would smile at me, just one last time. But I knew you would never stay. As you no longer smiled when you saw me.

Why, you asked, did I speak to you directly? I found half your face, on Twitter. The other half was shrouded in shadows, perhaps by your hair, an unforgettable thing. Nearly two years later, you found it in you to tease me. And when I teased you, you responded to "kitty." But only if it would be a cute kitty, you said. And then we did coffee. And perhaps I was too forward, or too backward. You would entertain me alone once more, and that time perhaps I was preoccupied with work - but I remember how you greeted me. We met with others. You brought a friend, to my office. You never met me thereafter. I always wish we spoke extensively. Maybe one day, you'll try again.

You were an angel in a quaint dress. Sometimes giggly, sometimes sad. We studied our tastes. You were going much farther than I, and I was too intense. Bitter, you said. I suppose my work is often either feckless, or bitter. But you were sorrow and light, joy and simplicity combined. My favourite time, was the moment when we stood closely, and you spoke of futility. Maybe we knew wildly different futilities. I've been chasing your thoughts. I've missed working beside you. When, are you coming to see me?

Three months have passed since I last heard your voice other than as a memory. Nearly a year since the lady before. In my mind, your voices are all clear - I can pen symphonies in those spaces, but I prefer lovers. Perhaps, that is why I don't depart from those whom I feel for dearly. But all people experience these asymmetries. Clearly you have chosen (or naturally come to) forget the equivalences of me. Knowing this, I write to you every day. A soldier or sailor or astronaut, casting fragments out into the abyss. So after a relatively peaceful day, I wonder. If you think of me as a distraction to be held at bay. Or as a noise you do not parse. Or as a secret longing. But these are ordinary meanderings of isolated minds. I wonder where where yours has been. It does not matter to me that you may have nearly forgotten me. The final messages I received said only that you do not hate past lovers, that they stop writing after a fortnight, and that you always enjoy reading what they say. If you wonder where this resilience comes from, it is a simple matter - you must remember that I was raised on a life of prayer. And you, my ladies, are the world to me. There is no one else to turn to, but goddesses that once availed.

I first heard of you as a colour. Searches turned up a pretty face, and a thoughtful disposition. That is all you have ever been to me. A friend of friends, a mark on a screen, and we are customarily social. Your hips are broad, your smile contagious. Your bare feet, bent over, frustrated, slurred speech ravaging the world. I have been moved by lesser beauties.

"Oh, have you been here the whole time?"
"Yup."
"I don't recognise you anymore."
"I must look so common, now."
"You do."
"Bye."
"You just want me to miss you."
"Get in line."
"Three years in, I still don't see the end."

2016-06-30

Yawn 2

Do we stay in character today?
10:35am - yes. Next check, soon enough.
//
Rustic is boring. Artisanal is unnecessary.
//
Still in character and managing to talk about little else besides sex, tech, and mergers. OK, bed time before business planning.
//
I'm all outta hours and I'm all out of cash. So it's time for bed. 10am and 3pm meetings and more sleep in between, if lucky.
//
LUD: laborious unscheduled disassembly lol
//
Bedtime. Then perhaps a second day of planning.
//
Unit online. Analytics on the agenda.
//
Done with a quick glance and some tweaks to marcomms. Back to fiscal concerns.
//
Come on guys. Start by assuming that standard mathematical notation gets off on the wrong footing. LOL. And there I was taking a stroll at 3 a.m. and reminding myself that the peace and calm is the superficial result from a process involving a network of selective memories.
//
Things must be interesting, when the accountant is praying to Jesus, at you, in WhatsApp.
//
Sometimes I wake up stressed, and it takes a few minutes to remember that I'm just parsing a memory of empathy with some other person. Then unfurl the "call stack," and the stress disappears, as preferred.
//
I wonder how long it will take for global markets to react as if they don't need Britain. Lol
//
Staff: "Apparently I'm not good at anything."
Trainer: "Well, this stage of your training is about learning not to care if other people hate your work."
Staff: "What am I in charge of?"
Trainer: "Anything you can put your foot down on... without caring if others hate you."
Staff: "What if they don't talk to me?"
Trainer: "Do you suppose anyone will survive for long in that fashion?"
Staff: "Why did you hire me?"
Trainer: "High APM."
Staff: "But you said I was slow."
Trainer: "You're slow because you keep clicking on the same thing over and over again..."
//
Sat 10pm: expansion meeting
Sat 11pm: survival meeting
Sun 10am: survival AND expansion meeting
Sun 12pm: advisory meeting
Aside from all the internal coaching, and risk of shutting down, that's a lot of flap.
//
Meetings are moving around. Done cleaning the toilet, so it time to get up and about.
//
Inspired by a nickname from staff:
.
IN THE FUTURE
1. Get entire staff to use Slack.
2. Write a BossBot on Slack to counsel staff.
3. Test the BossBot against the Immortality threshold by occasionally impersonating the bot, and seeing if staff can tell the difference.
‪#‎whileIWasJogging‬ ‪#‎whatWeShouldReallyBeDoing‬