This Frigging Rock Will Not Get the Better of Me

Once again, I’m hanging off the side of some mountain, somewhere south of Granada.

And once again, I ask myself: What in the hell am I doing here?

There’s no way up. There’s down, but – nah. Not yet.

I grapple, find a tiny ridge for my fingertips and clutch almightily.

Brice yells from below: “Your legs! Don’t try to hang from your hands – use your legs!”

I look at my feet – two pointed, hard-rubber shoe-tips, precariously placed on a 2cm-wide ridge. My legs tremble.

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On Practically Dislocated Shoulder Joints and the Value of Free Advice

No more than 35 years old; thin and short. The girl, I mean. The dog was almost half her size, young and rambunctious. She was far too light to handle him.

“Nice dog”.

“You think so? Have him, take him home. He’s driving me crazy.”

Her head lolloped back as the beast tugged on the leash, yanking her shoulder forward.

“He’s too strong and he just will not listen”.

“Yeah, I see what you mean. He’s fearful too, see? The way he cowers and barks at anyone closer than 40 meters. I wonder why.”

“This client I had last year, a dog trainer – he has a pretty good training manual on the web. It’s a free download, pretty good stuff. It’ll show you exactly how to educate him.”

She blinked at me, not getting it.

“It’s all psychology, you see?

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Being Stuck Really Only Exists In Our Heads

If you look around, there’s money to be made everywhere.

Everything, literally, has trade value. Even trash.

Point in case: there’s this guy in town who collects discarded furniture and household appliances.

He drives it to his warehouse, sees if it works, and once a month a Moroccan guy comes by with a van to give him a few thousand Euros. He loads it all up and takes it to Morocco to sell there.

Free money. Just from picking up what others no longer want.

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He Said: "User Experience, Schmoozer Experience" – and It Went Downhill From There

My first ever client years ago was a pretty nice guy, and he seemed pretty smart. At first.

He had built his own language learning system, and it was actually quite good.

WAY better than either Rosetta Stone or Pimsleur.

But his site, which served the learning system to his clients, was crap.

It wasn’t pretty, the navigation lacked logic, and tracking your progress was a bloody hassle.

At some point on a Skype call, I told him that since sales were up a bit, fixing the site would be a great investment.


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Because That's Just How Athletic I Am. Not – I Just Push On and So Should You

“Stick your fingers in that hole to your right. Trust your legs!”

I reach out, grab a ridge just deep enough for my fingertips, and heave myself up to a standing position.

My instructor shouts: “Good! How are you doing?”

Looking down, I answer: “I’m fine. I’m not having any fun though!”

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If I Had a Tailor…

I’d tailor in the morning…

I’d tailor in the evening…

All over this a-land…


I still have my whole workshop: machines, dummies and all.

It’s tucked away untidily in a room I rarely enter, and it’s all been doing a stellar job at collecting dust for many years now.

Still, if I had the opportunity I would love to start something.

Especially now that I know how to sell – something I had no idea of ten years ago.

Which is part of the reasons I burnt through my $150.000 inheritance.

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Ghastly Rancid Calamares and Doing it Right Anyway

Before I have my laptop out, Jose is by my side, ready to take my order.

“A beer and um… some deep-fried calamares please.”

He trundles off and returns promptly with a cold tall one.

I look at the winter-empty beach, take in the sea air, and draw my coat closer around me against the breeze.

Then I switch my screen to white-on-black so I can read in the sun, and I get to work.

A bit later he puts the calamares down, and I instantly see: I can’t eat that.

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Why I Was Rightly Fired

Last year I started playing bass and singing backing vocals with some English musicians here in town.

At first it all went well: we clicked, we grooved, we harmonised.

We did one short gig which went fairly alright: the audience was happy, which is always a good start.

But after a few weeks I was told that they’d rather continue as a duo.


“Your singing is fine, your playing is good too, but…”

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A Few Small Samples of Mentorship Reviews

Thought I’d share some tips that I pulled out of some of the mentorship reviews I’ve been writing lately.

To explain: I number each line in my students’ copy, and then analyse line by line, commenting where necessary.

Each of the points below refers to one particular line in the submitted copy.


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Why Inspirational Videos of Superhuman Feats Wreck Your Self-Confidence

When I was 18 I started a training to in the end become a psychiatric nurse.

It was a four-year course while working on a psychiatric ward, preceded by 6 months of classroom schooling.

After those 6 months, I dropped out.

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