Lesson From the Pressure Cooker

Tuesday, January 5, 2010 , Posted by Johnny Fuery at 4:20 PM

Originally Published 2007-12-12 04:10:23

In the last 20 days or so, the shortest work day I had was roughly sixteen hours. In one five day streak starting last Sunday, I coded for 30 hours straight (save for a 15 minute nod-off around hour 23), then did a 26.5 hour encore, and another 26.

I think I said crazier things and had wilder thoughts at the end of that little marathon than I've ever had under the influence of ethanol. And I've got plenty of good stories on that topic. :-)

So, as I sit in a hotel room wondering when my caffeine-induced trembles will wear off, I contemplate the things I've learned in the past two weeks.


  • One can do amazing things and accomplish an impressive amount in an unbelievably short time given the right amount an type of pressure and incentives.

  • Some version of Law & Order is always on, no matter what time you climb into bed.

  • We all have weird sensibilities. I don't blink when it comes to spending $4 on coffee, but paying $10 a day to get internet at my hotel just bothers me. And it doesn't much matter if I'm getting reimbursed for the fee or not. Somehow it would bother me less if it went straight to my hotel bill, though. (If your career is in hospitality management, take note!)

  • Clients that are patient with you when you're busy handling other commitments are a dream. Treasure them, love them, treat them well. Those relationships are worth more than I could ever convey.

  • Caffeine does give you a buzz if you have enough of it. The double Red Bull high, as a matter of fact, almost makes the lights seem brighter. I'm definitely going to have to detox next week...

  • No matter where you are, no matter how independent, or brilliant, no matter your state of well-being, no matter your position, there's always someone who will raise your eyebrows. It might be because you wonder how they obtained their power, it might be because they're rude, selfish, and cruel, or it might just be because they want to have sex with you. Whatever the assuredly varying stimuli, it's important to always maintain your professionalism, even if you've worked 80 out of the last 92 hours. (Oops.)

  • When your blog posting frequency gets sparse, readership starts to disappear. Even if you're a Smart Guy.

  • Radically dramatic fatigue and a common goal is very much a bonding experience.

  • Self-made rich guys are usually pretty cool. Even if there's a little slavedriver in 'em.


I'm still alive, guys... do keep reading. I'll be back and better than ever after I get through a three-day caffeine withdrawal headache...

Comments

On 2007-12-12 04:29:05 ia » Lesson From the Pressure Cooker said:
[...] Check it out! While looking through the blogosphere we stumbled on an interesting post today.Here’s a quick excerpt In the last 20 days or so, the shortest work day I had was roughly sixteen hours. In one five day streak starting last Sunday, I coded for 30 hours straight (save for a 15 minute nod-off around hour 23), then did a 26.5 hour encore, and another 26. I think I said crazier things and had wilder thoughts at the end of that little marathon than I’ve ever had under the influence of ethanol. And I’ve got plenty of good stories on that topic. So, as I sit in a hotel room wondering when my caffein [...]

On 2007-12-12 06:24:28 Lesson From the Pressure Cooker | time management said:
[...] Read the rest of this great post here [...]

On 2007-12-18 23:25:09 Matt said:
You sir are dominating my work ethic ;) haha seriously though those are some amazing hours. It's weird when your working on something you love and its not a nine to five anymore...but a lifestyle. That sux about the paying ten bucks a day for internet...i would be upset as well.

On 2007-12-19 09:19:25 goyin said:
caffeine's buzz for me quickly turns into hell... i think thats why i'll never dabble in meth.

On 2007-12-19 14:51:39 Jeff said:
Whoaa... I'm getting carpal tunnel just thinking about those hours. Gotta disagree on the $4 coffee though, and if you've seen Starbucks' stock price in '07 that idea seems to be catching on.

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