Floatable Tires

It’s my fourth day in Tokyo. At age 38 it’s the first time I traveled solo to a foreign country.

I have to say I miss home already. Thinking of being back 2 1/2 weeks from now makes me happy. Weird, I know.

It’s not that I’m not enjoying myself here. Japan is amazing. The mischievous voice in my head kept prodding me since I landed in Narita, ‘This is the future, right? We’re in utopia, no?’

No, Voice, it’s neither. But I’m glad we’re having fun here.

Home isn’t just New York. It isn’t merely a combination of people I love, satisfying and/or necessary routines, familiar faces and places, my apartment and my stuff, working hard for my clients. Home is building something. Home is building my business, my curiosity, my life.

Or maybe I’m just an old grumpy man who doesn’t like leaving home, which is the Greatest City in the World. And also the Second Dirtiest, behind San Francisco.

Quick notes on Japan:

They have smoking sections inside cafes. I’m writing this inside a coffee shop not far from my hotel. Upstairs on the mezzanine is set aside for smokers. Pretty cool.

Speaking of my hotel, I bought a beer from a vending machine in the hallway next to my room. 220 yen (~2 USD). I had only had a few sips, just bought it for shits and giggles..

Tokyo is great for tourists. Public transit is great (way cleaner than NYC), everything important is also printed in English, menus have pictures, people speak basic Engrish.

I love looking at their cars here.

Men are all clean shave here. Beard game here is super weak.

(Ladies probably make up for it… down there… Giggity!)

Food is great, for its price, tastiness, and service, compared to NYC. No tax and tip. Hotel prices are reasonable.

Next time I’m here, I’m doing a road trip on a motorbike. Hell, I’ll do a cross-Asia road trip on a bike, start from Macau, go through China, South Korea, and end in Tokyo.

Hmm, there’ll be some stretches of water to manage. A bike with big dopey floatable tires, let’s hope.

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Just Want the Opportunity

It’s 9:46pm, still at the office. I should go home. But I wanted to write a little before I end the day.

Depression, anxiety, lack of motivation both professionally and personally… I’ve been steadily flicking away at this monkey gorilla on my back for, let’s say, six months now.

One thing I realize is I have to exert myself — just a little, not too much — to want the opportunity. What kind of opportunity? On work, lifting weights at the gym, making new friends, ending toxic relationships, so on.

A few weeks I tried something new. It was something I always wanted to do, but never did. Twice in two consecutive days I did open-mics. Five minutes in each session. Did I get any laughs? My first time was fantastic given it was my first — cherry was nicely popped — but the second produced a few nervous laughs, mostly from myself.

I thought about doing open-mics several times a week, honing the craft of joke-telling and laughter creation. Then I decided abruptly that I shouldn’t, not right now at least.

Why?

Because the opportunity cost was too damn high. Although I’ve tried only two open-mics, I can already tell it would become a serious investment in time. I had to wait for other open-mic-ers to go before it was my turn, and it was a polite gesture to wait and watch the others go after I was done. It’s not an exaggeration that you can spend one full hour or more just so you can get five minutes of stage time. And that’s not including the time to get there (twenty minutes to a downtown comedy club from my office in midtown) and back.

I need the opportunity cost to be lower. Otherwise I’d rather be working, building my business, writing here on my blog, and launching my podcast.

I need the opportunity cost to be lower, because that will lead to an abundance of opportunities. If I want to continue flicking away at this gorilla on my back, then I need to work on my weaknesses not just daily, but hourly.

More reps, more strength. Simple as that.

If you want to get better, put your fucking phone down. In fact, turn that shit off. It takes only five minutes to get you in the zone, in the flow. Remember that. Just five minutes.

10:02pm. Let’s go home, clean a little, and go the fuck to bed. Yay.

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I’ve Cured Depression

Live an awesome, interesting life.

That’s it.

Depression for me is the result of boredom.

It’s living a life full of potential but little action.

It’s working a job that pays the bills while puncturing holes in your soul.

It’s being with people who bring you down, but you stay around because you’re loving, loyal, a good guy, you don’t want burn bridges.

You’re drowning not because you’re in the water but because you’re not moving.

So you finally realize you’re not winning. So change the game.

This cure isn’t a one-time thing. It’s not actually a thing at all. Keep moving, keep changing, stay curious, stay hungry.

Because you are The Cure.

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Corporate Blue

I work in midtown. I see a lot of guys in blue button-down shirts.

It’s that baby blue. Corporate blue.

I don’t know why, but that’s beginning to bug me.

Back in the day, in my early twenties when I started at corporate jobs, I thought: Oh, I should wear something like that, too.

Then as I got older: Oh, this color isn’t not for me. 

Then I became a freelancer: Dude, I’ll just go casual. 

Now I’m like: I think I’m getting sick of the office and everything business.

I may need to switch things up.

Soon.

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Emotional Solution

I’m big on self improvement.

(To what extent I have improved myself in thirty seven years I’ve been alive is another topic.)

I realized the other day my usual approach to my personal issues are “hard”: Logic, Reason, Discipline, Commitment, Results-oriented, Follow the Plan, Quantity over Quality, Binary.

However, I forget I am a Feeler, not just a Thinker. Maybe I should incorporate emotions into my personal problem solving.

For instance if I feel unmotivated to go to the office on a Sunday like today, I usually scold myself, “You’re behind on these projects. Stop your whining and shut your face hole, stop being a lazy butt-scratching panda, get to work.”

Or I could be like, “Imagine how you will feel when you get these things done. Imagine how great you will feel, leaving the office and going home, knowing that this week will be at the very minimum pretty fucking solid because you knocked these few items off your to-do list during the weekend.”

Imagining future positive feelings before a difficult or a dreadful task seems like a helpful motivator. It almost bends your reality, or rather, your perception of it.

Perception is reality, but also intention is perception. Your will makes your world.

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