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January 2022 now page
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mefrem committed Jan 19, 2022
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image_path: assets/images/pretty_scenes/Thailand_scene.jpg
alt: "The Burmese border with Thailand, January 2019"
last_modified_at: 2020-10-26
last_modified_at: 2022-01-19
layout: single
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Previous:
[July 2020](https://github.com/mefrem/mefrem.github.io/commit/e05bc4978ca2c3e1954959d566d0a10ed24571d2)

[October 2020](https://github.com/mefrem/mefrem.github.io/commit/01e0747d441a4ac868b75960211512aa27357c4c?branch=01e0747d441a4ac868b75960211512aa27357c4c&diff=split)

This is my ["now"](https://nownownow.com/about) page, inspired by [Derek Sivers.](https://sivers.org/nowff)

## April 2021
## January 2022

*January 19th, 2022 | 12:30pm | Kerby Lane Diner in Austin, TX

It's been 1 year, 3 months, and 24 days since I moved to Austin, Texas.

In that time I attained my [first straddle planche](https://www.instagram.com/p/CL4nDzmF7vD/), started a business, launched a [digital crypto course](www.maxyields.io), turned 30, met heroes, new friends, made, for me, a ton of money. I also made every mistake in solopreneuring—not minding the business _around_ the product, emotion and motivation (mis)management, imposter syndrome. I burned out, fell into comparison, lost touch with important practices like meditation and gymnastics, and lost a ton of money (I think I'm the only person early to OHM who didn't make it).

It's been a ride.

In all honesty, it wasn't pretty. I spent some time in the tank, the trough of sorrow, with [The Struggle](https://techcrunch.com/2012/06/14/the-struggle/). My already large appreciation for entrepreneurs has reached new highs. I learned a lot about myself, my strengths and inclincations, my inner committee of know-it-all critics. I learned—let me say, more like am still learning—to love them.

I learned a lot about the depths of compassion my friends and family are capable of. Maryna, Rai, Alex, Alan; Nancy, Papa, Sonia; many, many more. Thank you.

I lasted six months to the day at a totally fine tech job before I quit.
As much as the process smarted, humbled, and dejected me, I have the power to draw any interpretation I want of my experiences. I can choose the more empowering interpretation: This stuff makes me stronger. I can shed the disempowering: That sharing this stuff qualifies me as incompetent and shameful.

I was a natural language processing data scientist at a healthcare firm, creating a machine-learned data product. It was really fun learning wrapping my head around the problem making my first APIs and models—going from 0 to 1—but maintenance and data upkeep couldn't hold a candle to the life around me in Austin, which has been *taking off*: an incredible community surround me, opportunities for interesting work abound, and I got the crypto bug *bad*.
The biggest casualties of this period, and my reactions to it, have been my openness and joy. I feel like I took a run so hard at what I wanted that the fall on my face really hurt. Which sucks, because I love my openness and joy, a lot.

Right now, I’m working on:
So what I'm doing **now** is choosing that. Creating all that incredible joy and excitement, and then living from it.

- direct action on and advocacy for immigration reform through *[IDEAL Immigration](https://www.idealimmigration.us/)*, a non-profit. At the intersection of human flourishing, economic growth, and human liberty is *immigration*. This project is the culmination of my years of study of government interventionism, the conditions for economic growth and human development, and my intellectual collision with [Bryan Caplan](https://www.amazon.com/Open-Borders-Science-Ethics-Immigration/dp/1250316960). It was he who introduced me to Steve Kuhn, the founder of *IDEAL*, and Bryan is why I have the opportunity to instantiate what might be currently the most underrated, effective altruist idea there is: more legal immigration.
- adult gymnastics and acrobatics training. Early April saw me on an [eight-day *traincation* in Las Vegas](https://www.instagram.com/p/CNdpmEaF0UJ/). Vegas is home to the world’s best Cirque du Soleil and circus performance acts, so the training facilities are world-class. I traveled with 15 other acrobats, fire spinners, and performers as we contorted, stood on our hands, or otherwise flipped through sin city. Now that I’m back in Austin, I have a number of skills I’m looking to attain, as well as... maybe *model underwear*?
- the crypto economy. Crypto is staggeringly exciting, and shows *immense* promise. And nothing gives me more joy than showing people what’s possible. I’ve taken up coaching and consulting on the intricacies of the space, and have received lots of positive feedback.
There's a lot more in the way of details—for instance, I'm looking for work that leans on my technical understanding in data science and crypto, but leverages primarily my 99th percentile extroversion and people-skills; I'm carefully choosing the community in Austin I want to move-in with next—but those will get shored up in future, and aren't so clear right now. That's ok.

As always, if youre in Austin, send me a note or [Twitter DM!](https://twitter.com/maxefremov).
As always and remember, if you're in Austin, [say hi.](https://twitter.com/maxefremov) Gramercy.

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