My first 7 days of unemployment
Published: 19 May 2020
Modified: 19 May 2020
Getting laid off
Well that was an interesting week. After getting laid off last Wednesday it's been an interesting ride that included meeting my internet hero, getting up 330am one day, joining the weird wide web, and 2 live streams over Instagram. Sound intriguing? Read on my friend, read on.
Alrighty then, so if you missed the backstory and my initial feelings (theres that f word again) and thoughts after getting laid off, hit this link to read some words by yours truly. Okay, now back to now.
Like I said, what a week. So on Monday I had a little chat lined up with Braden who runs Romega Digital; a dev shop that needed some development help in Vue and Tailwind. Perfect! Because I basically like Tailwind more than milk and cereal (which I can't live without) I jumped at the chance to talk to him. So we got to chatting. I explained a tale about Laracon last year... Basically I almost went even though I'm a front-end developer because I wanted to witness Jack McDade's super epic full vaporwave design makeover (see it preserved here). That started an avalanche of compliments about how Jack inspires me with his designs, writing prowess, online quirkiness, business philosophies and product (yada yada yada, yeah he's my hero). So Braden "hold on a second" ... I hold on, not sure what's going on and then BOOM 💥 💥 I fall out my chair when I see this:
Holy mackerel! So we start shooting the breeze and its incredible. And by that I mean I sit there completely speechless and stunned while Braden and Jack catch up. What. A. Monday. It probably goes without saying but big shout out to Jack for being extra rad and joining us!
Oh yes there's more. So you know how in writing school they say save the best thing for last? (Full disclosure I didn't go to writing school but I can only imagine some wily professor in a twead jacket saying such a thing because all the books I've ever read get better as you go.) Well I just did the opposite of that. Meeting Jack was my highlight of my week nay-month-nay-year? Almost makes losing all my income worth it. Almost! Anyways I digress... so I'm building some stuff in Tailwind and Vue.js for Braden as a freelance developer and that's pretty cool. Woohoo income! Woohoo freelance developer life!
Here’s a little gif of the little button component I made for this project I’m working on aka my first freelance work:
That 330am wake up
I know what you are thinking, why did I get up at 330 (on that Monday)?
Holy early batman!
Okay, well that's a whole story in itself. Well its a short story (editor note: not so short). Basically I went sunrise Mountain chasing. For those that don’t know I founded and run this little company called Rainier Watch. The whole idea is to share when Mount Rainier is out in our area because it's the best thing since soft butter. Oh and I design and sell epic apparel. For some reason I decided I would spend my first Monday after getting laid off chasing the sunrise and live streaming it to the RW followers on the gram. I definitely picked the wrong time of year to do this thing though because sunrise is between 5 and 530 am. And I was driving an hour south to get a closer view. Well we did the darned thing (Ryan, a rocking local photographer met up with me). So yeah we found a top secret local spot and did some Rainier watching at 5am-ish when the sun rose. It was grand but holy cow it was early. Watch the replay on IG TV here
Here's some BTS shots (behind the scenes, Ryan taught me a hip new phrase):
my first live stream ever
Okay I mentioned 2 livestreams. My first attempt at going "live" was last Thursday and I was quite nervous. Via RW, I'd been talking with a local author who wrote a book about a woman who wants to be the first woman to summit Rainier and she had sent me some signed copies to give away. So I decided to do a live unboxing of the boxes! What could go wrong?! Besides the first stream not uploaded/saved and me sitting in a pool of water it was a success! And because I didn't upload or save it correctly no one will ever know. So I filmed another take and you can see it here.
I'm stoked to help out Jamie, the local author and you should definitely check out her website and book!
the weird wide webring
I joined a webring! Remember webrings and geocities and the early days of the Internet in the 90s? Yeah me neither. But Jack swears they were a thing and so he started a webring to keep the web weird. When I saw it Monday (before actually meeting him), I joined up! Gotta keep things weird! Check out the whole ring here
Also remarkably there's a lot of people interested in weird things it would appear. Here's my web traffic:
Reminder - analytics for this site are open so anyone can peruse. Smash this to view:
As I reflect on past 7 days its been pretty kind to me. I've got a number of leads out there and I've been utterly humbled by the about of people who have reached out and offered condolences and/or help. You all are amazing and I thank you! My leads are plentiful and its almost overwhelming to try and stay current with answering emails, LinkedIn messages, and text messages. 😚😚
I feel like I've got a solid foot into the world of freelance development which has many advantages and disadvantages.
On the bright side
- I'll get to use super awesome tech that I love like Tailwind CSS and Vue.js and work my own schedule.
- Also I will get to do more things like design this way.
- I've always felt a big commercial dev job would be too silo’ed for me and might stiffle my creativity.
On the not-so-bright side
- There's definitely a lack of consistency and I'm not sure if it's what I want to do with my life.
- Uhm do I still file for unemployment? I’m not even sure. I must research further. 📚
- Development as a developer (I mean getting better at coding) might come slower. Sidenote on that is I've never been sure coding is what I want 100% because I enjoy design, product and strategy as well).
I think I could probably try this freelance thing for now especially with our puppy (br#eaking news!) coming next month and see how it plays out.