Tuesday. I woke up at 6:00 AM and put myself to work. It’s a blur, but I remember very well transitioning between feelings that the game is almost ready, and that it’s weeks away. At noon I had a nap, and I dreamed that I was at my former job at Cabify. I was working on my desk, and I peeked through the side of my monitor to see what my coworkers were up to: they had the Boolean Game open and were discussing among them how to solve a stage. I gasped in horror, and I felt my face contort to the point of disfigurement, much like Edward Munch’s The Scream painting. I woke up and noticed with much relief that my mouth was not open and much less my face disfigured.
The dream pointed at the cause of the shift of feeling between completeness and incompleteness: if I didn’t care about my colleagues opinions I’d remove all the auxiliary stuff that makes it a “good product” and I’d be done with it. But I care too much, and this is not virtue, it’s attachment to results. What’s more: my coworkers weren’t even criticising, nothing bad happened, they were just playing the game but I knew how much was half baked.
Lately I find myself quarreling with imaginary people who point out at this or that defect, and I respond to them “fuck you, you don’t know how hard this is. Think you can do better? Be my guest. Can’t do it? Go back to posting your vanity shots on Dribbble, asshole”. Every creative endeavor brings it’s share of critics. The internet is full of good people, but unfortunately it’s the assholes who are the loudest.
After this dream I sat down to meditate, and I found a tremendous amount of relief in it. It was finding a warm, cozy shelter in the middle of a storm. Marcus Aurelius image came to me repeatedly, I recalled he writes about an inner shelter in which one finds comfort in difficult times. I was looking for the quote, but I found this snippet which is appropriate for this time:
But perhaps the desire of the thing called fame will torment thee.- See how soon everything is forgotten, and look at the chaos of infinite time on each side of the present, and the emptiness of applause, and the changeableness and want of judgement in those who pretend to give praise, and the narrowness of the space within which it is circumscribed, and be quiet at last. For the whole earth is a point, and how small a nook in it is this thy dwelling, and how few are there in it, and what kind of people are they who will praise thee.”
Five years ago, in storms of very different nature, I used to “translate” the meditations into my own language so I would understand better. I’ll make an attempt:
If fame torments you, see how soon everything is forgotten. Put yourself in the present, look forward into the future, and back at the past: it’s only chaos. The present is all you have.
People applaud because the person next to them is clapping, not necessarily because they liked the performance. Other people pretend to give praise because they expect favorable judgement in return. Even if sincere, praise is necessarily narrow: your entire professional domain is but a drop in the ocean of knowledge, and your field is just a cluster of molecules. Understanding this, all praise is insignificant.
Ahhhh relief. It’s time for bed.
Questions I’m asking myself
- Is the gym a viable workplace?
- What can I do to reduce distractions at home?
- What is the best way of notifying people that new stages are available?
- What is the best way to monetize through recurring revenue?
- Added: Where is meditation practice leading me?