Matisyahu

If you like white guy reggae like I do, you’ve probably come across this guy.  He’s a Jewish rapper/reggae rock artist who has such a unique sound (at least for a white guy).  Ever since Sublime came out in the early ’90s, there has been a barrage of copycat artists, or artists who tried to be as good as Sublime was, but none of them were even close.  This guy comes close.  This guy and whatever band he has with him, he totally entertains beyond expectations.  And he’s not just a gimmick anymore.  This guy is the real deal after his last live album, Live at Stubb’s Vol. II.  This live album, as epic as it is inspiring, surpasses his first in so many ways, and that is a huge compliment.  Believe me.  I’ll have to admit that, like Sublime and a few others, his music didn’t immediately grow on me, save for a few popular songs.  But after a few years of listening to this guy and all of his songs multiple times, he deserves much respect.  He is at the top of his game and he is definitely going places, not that he already hasn’t.  He is just becoming more mainstream, which isn’t all bad.

He’s been a true inspiration to me and even though I’m not Jewish, I feel his soulful vibes go through me.  His new single, “One Day,” was pretty much the Winter Olympics theme song, and he has developed a cult following of sorts.  Sure, he’s not as edgy as some of the other bands like him when it comes to bad language or taboo topics, but he is above all of that.  He is certainly marketable, and I have tremendous respect for him as an artist  and as a person.  Props to you Matis for keeping the white boy reggae alive in such an authentic way.

Here’s some links to some of his videos on Youtube:

I’d put more songs, but you can just look him up on Wikipedia and Youtube.  He’s got a ton more studio and live songs that are excellent, and I’ll direct you to his website at Matisyahu World.  Much respect, man.

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eBay is Minimalist Heaven…for Sellers

I’ve recently started selling things on eBay again after a 7 year hiatus.  It’s just that I’m trying to rid myself of some of the worthless junk I’ve accumulated over the years, and also get rid of it at ridiculously low prices (i.e. what the market dictates).  I have sold on eBay in the past, making a couple thousand dollars in the process, so it’s nothing old to me, except it’s been awhile.  I like tracking my auctions to see what is selling and what is not.  If something doesn’t sell after 2 auctions, I’ll just donate it or throw it out.  It’s a lot of fun, selling.  I just don’t want to get into the habit of buying on there as well, as that can often get me into buying obsession.  So, just selling for now, and I’ll see if I can make $1000 in a couple of months at it.  If I can, great.  If I fall short, great too, but not as great.  It’s all about getting myself down to the bare minimum required to thrive.  Even though I own less than most, I still own things I could easily sell and not miss.

I’m just selling books, DVDs, and a couple mp3 players I wish I wouldn’t have bought.  (God I hate touch screens.)  This will allow me to save even more money than the approximate $15000 I have saved up.  And that makes me feel good about myself.  I’m sorry if these blog posts are a little thin lately, it’s just that I’m trying to keep with the spirit of the minimalist lifestyle and declutter my life to the point where I’m no longer living a consumerist lifestyle.  I’ll just let other people buy that lifestyle from me.

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Minimalism is the End of Organizing

This will be a rather short post on how minimalism is the end of organizing in case you can’t read titles. :)  When you create a life that contains nothing but the essential for you to thrive, then there are no extraneous things to organize, because everything is already in its place.  You don’t need to buy all sorts of fancy closet organizers or Shoes Under, because you’ll have more than enough space for everything.  It truly is a wondrous thing to be able to put everything you own in the space that is allotted to you at this current time without having to spend money on more things that will only serve to organize the things you already have.

When in doubt, simplify.  It’s not so hard to throw things out you don’t use anymore, or to give them away.  You just have to come to the point where you detach emotionally from that particular item.  The key is to get things to the point where you have everything you need to live a good life, and nothing else.  It is pure simplicity.

Just as an aside, I notice there are tons of minimalist blogs out there.  Is that extraneous or what?

Minimalism

I’ve decided what my new website will be about, and there is no compromise here.  Minimalism, or lack of stuff, as a life philosophy.  It’s a good philosophy to have, especially in the consumerist world we live in.  Consumerism is rampant, and minimalism is a way to combat that.  It will help the planet, and help your wallet as well.  I’ve saved $15,000 in 2 years working at a place that only pays around $20,000 a year, so go figure…it’s possible to start saving and to start becoming more and more of a minimalist and to enjoy life instead of working so hard to pay for stuff you don’t really need.  To buy or not buy won’t be the question anymore.  It will now be, “I’m not buying it, and if I really need it, I’ll find it used or refurbished.”

Getting back to basics is the first step, like what do you truly need.  In America, we have five basic needs:  Food, water, shelter, transportation, and high speed internet. :)  If that was all you had, would you be just as happy as you are today?  Yes or no?  I would say yes without batting an eye.  But you don’t have to go that extreme, or you can go more extreme, cutting out the internet and transportation.  Simplicity is one thing.  Minimalism takes simplicity to the extreme, and it is different for each person, but the principles are the same:  Keep what you need, give away, sell, or throw out the rest.  It is a long, arduous process, but it is rewarding, as there is little need to organize and spend nearly as much money.

I’m still awake at 3:30 AM, so it’s probably time I wrap this up and go to bed, although I’m not that tired.  I’m probably just going to listen to some music while I lie in bed and hopefully I’ll doze off before the morning comes.  I’ll be back in the future, I promise.

Considering SBI!

I’ve been looking through the 10 Day Action plan on Site Build It!’s website.  I’ve gotten up to Day 3 so far, and it seems like a very intelligent way to make money online.  This website is not a cash cow by any means and is declining in rankings, probably due to my inability to give a flying freak about keywords and tags, and whatever else makes other websites successful.  I know some websites don’t care about keywords and SEO either, but if a company wants to take care of it for me, then it is a sound investment at less than $300.  If it will make me thousands of dollars a month eventually, what is the downside?  And they even have a 90-day money-back guarantee.  And if you want your money back after that, they refund whatever is left for the year (i.e. 6 months worth if you have been around for 6 months).  I know this blog and website is not going to be a part of this, and I’m considering canceling it because it hasn’t grown in 5 years, so what’s the point in keeping it?

It really looks to be comprehensive, and I’ve only seen the first 3 days of this program.  And many, many of the sites rank in the top 100,000 on Alexa.  That’s pretty amazing if you ask me.  It has all these add-ons, many of which I am unfamiliar, so here is Steve Pavlina’s review of Site Build It!.  It still will require hard work, much more work than this website has required, but it will be easy on the technical side.  That is the main problem I’ve had with building this website.  I hate HTML and any other programming language.  I’d rather just create the content and let SBI! do the rest.  I’m already paying around $100 a year for hosting on this site and I’m not even getting a return on it.

I’m just considering it for now, because I need a new website theme, one that will create income, not just stir people up about the doom of civilization.  Sure, the doom may still be coming, but if I can emerge on the other side a wealthy man, then I’ll be in a much better position to contribute and be comfortable.  I have a good intuitive feeling about it, and after I’ve watched all 10 days worth of the videos I will make a decision on whether or not I want to run an online business that will actually make a good amount of money, like thousands a month, which means I will eventually be able to commit to it full-time.  That will be an amazing place to be, because I’ll no longer have to be a slave to the corporate world, and finally have the freedom to pursue the things I’ve always wanted, most notably a stable career in stand-up comedy and to commit fully to my writing.  I could still keep this site around, if not just for free-flowing rants and whatnot, which would help me express myself without having to consider keywords that are relevant to the overall theme of my site.

I can see why I lost so many visitors on this site, but there is nothing I can do from a technical standpoint to remedy that.  I can have a common theme, but all my backlog of posts are all over the place, and it is not a consistent website.  But then again, I get into different things, then go back to other tings, then have a post one day that has nothing to do with anything I’ve ever written before.  I’m not a big wizard at tags, or categories, marketing, or anything else like that, but to make a living at the Internet, you have to be a jack of all trades,  or at least pay someone to be that for you.  I don’t know if the format of the SBI! website is optimal for me, but it sure is optimal for the people visiting the site, so in some ways I will have to conform to the blueprint of their sites in order to make money so that I won’t have to do wage labor anymore.

I just hope my motivation doesn’t wane in creating this website that doesn’t even exist yet.  I’m hoping to create a brand of one, myself, and discussing whatever topic that crazy program SBI! has will say is my best bet for success.  I have a few in mind already that I think will make me some money, such as minimalism (although I don’t think I could sell anything from a website like that), comedians and how I rate them (there is unlimited potential for a site like this, but I’m not sure how many there are already out there), and anarcho-primitivist themes (again, what kinds of ads would appear on my site?).

This seems like the best way to turn my writing and ideas into a profit.  This site has been a non-profit for so long, and it has seen better days, especially when it comes to Alexa rankings, although it is not exactly the crown of achievement, although I must admit that I express some unique and interesting ideas on here.  I just don’t market my site, nor do I spread the word any other way.  I’d rather have a web URL that is not my name in addition to this.  A website that is a little less repetitive and a little more focused would help me tremendously.  This blog/website is like my personal journal, although not all that personal.  I’ve gotten tons of positive feedback, but also not a lot of traffic.  That is the main problem.  If I could have like 50 times the traffic I have now, it would help, but I guess my content doesn’t warrant that.  I’m too all over the place on this blog.  But that’s what I like about it.  If you don’t like it, go read someone else’s blog.  Is that the wrong attitude?

I am probably going to be up all night because of my boss pretty much canceling this night of work for me because my co-worker was sick, so now I can’t sleep, can’t do anything productive other than this, so why not?  I can just go through things in my head until the sun rises and I go off to bed.  I don’t know how the hell I’m going to go to work again tonight, because it’s been a night on, a night off, a night on, a night off, a night on, because of all of the chaos that is CVS/pharmacy.  I never know what is going to happen there, so it makes sense to try to build an income-generating website to lessen my dependence on a corporation.  It should be interesting to see how a website made semi-professionally works compared to this one.  I’m sure within a couple of months, it will already rank higher.  Isn’t that sad?  Not really.  At least I learned my lesson, but not yet.

I will continue watching the videos until I pass out tonight, and then be back in the afternoon to watch some more, until I get the basic premise of this whole organization.  Wish me luck!  I’m hoping to escape the rat race for a more fulfilling life as an online businessman.

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