Memorial Day in StartupLand

Posted on May 28, 2010. Filed under: startups, Uncategorized |

It’s the Friday of Memorial Day Weekend.  I was up at 6:30AM, working from my iPad in bed by 6:31, at the gym before 8, and at the office by 9:30.  As I walked from the East Village to the West Village, I passed young professional after young professional carrying tote bags donning the words JPMorgan, KKR, etc… They all had their “summer weekend” outfits on.  Sunglasses, newspaper poking out the side of their bag, boat shoes no socks, and a smile on their faces like they were going to coast through this Friday and “slip out” at 4 to catch the early train to the Hamptons.  They walked with a cadence that said they’ve been thinking about this 3 day weekend for the last 2 months, and it occurred to me that the holiday weekend meant so much more to them than it does to me.

I remember when I used to work in finance (first job out of school), the briefest glimpse of a break from the grind and routine was a very big deal, and as I now watch what this holiday weekend means to these guys, it occurs to me that they are not really living.  Every day I wake up and I am doing exactly what I want.  Yes, I work hard.  Yes, I am tired sometimes.  But at the end of the day, I am not searching for a break from my everyday life.  There is a fundamental problem with a life where a 3 day weekend puts a hop in your step that won’t return until Labor Day rolls around…

I walked by a 30 year old dude in a small BMW that said “I’ve been dreaming of this aspirational lease for the last 6 years in my cubicle,” and he had his “weekend bag” on the passenger seat, shades on, heading for the west side highway.  I could see he was “sneaking out” Friday morning when all the other suckers were working a full day.  It occurred to me that I don’t want to sneak out.  I want to get to the office, write a blog post, focus on my to do list, get better, learn more, prepare, because all the work I’m gonna do while that guy is drinking Amstels by the pool of his shitty summer share is for me and my team.  Not some 40 year old Managing Director who’s been in the Hamptons since Thursday morning at his place on the beach that this 30 year old guy would kill a 6 month old puppy to call his own.

So, I guess in some ways I pity that guy in the beamer who’s at this point probably at exit 63 on the LIE, salivating over the sign to Montauk Highway.  Because Monday night is going to come around, and he will return to a life that I almost lived, that you couldn’t pay me $5 Million a year to return to.

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24 Responses to “Memorial Day in StartupLand”

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Great post, Jordan. The great majority of corporate America needs to take a long, hard look at their lives and why a holiday weekend is such a welcomed break from the suck that is everyday life.

On a side note, I actually grew up off exit 63 of the LIE. As typical [insert holiday] traffic dictates, Mr. BMW still has another 2 hours + before he hits East Hampton, even at 11am on a Friday. He’ll spend 6+ hrs in the car this weekend.

Amen, brother.

Great post. I’ve been thinking a lot about how I no longer get happy when Fridays roll around (especially relative to everyone else in New York). It’s not because I don’t like the weekends but because I actually like my weekdays just as much.

Exactly…TGIF does not exist anymore…so weird/good

Jordan this is so true – I almost lived that life as well and boy am I glad I didn’t. This reminds me of an article I read where it stated that people typically get 3 weeks of vacation and posited the question “how much are the other 49 weeks of your year work”. More and more we are becoming like “human veal”, spending our lives in little cubicles and eating fast food for lunch when there is so much more people could do with that creative spark.

I’m sitting at home in my PJs, working, watching the French Open and preparing to move cross country for BSchool. Definitely a good reminder that I’ve avoided that life since school and I don’t want to fall for the trappings after.

Have a great weekend big guy

Thanks for starting my Friday with a great reminder of why I left that other world. Bootstrapping in a uISV is a thrill a minute. Happy weekend to us all.

The work is the reward, not the break from it. That is how I have always felt too. Why do you need a “break” from what you love doing? I have this debate all the time with people who don’t understand why I get up early to work, work late into the night, and work on the weekends. I guess you can classify it as “work” but what I’m doing is the farthest from it. Life is too short to suffer through the majority it with the only salvation being your long weekends and 3 weeks vacation time. I would much rather work more and harder but at something I enjoy every minute of and where I have the opportunity to create real value for the world. This seems like the only option to me yet we are considered the weird ones because we don’t see a long Memorial Day weekend as a highlight. Along the same lines, I never understood why people say “happy Friday”. I guess it never mattered to me what day of the week it is. I will be working just as hard and doing what I love regardless of what the calendar says.

Well done Jordan!

There are no words for how much I love this post.

I love this post, that said, I wish you were coming to Roskilde with us.

[...] them. “Every day I wake up and I am doing exactly what I want,” the JumpPost co-founder writes. “Yes, I work hard. Yes, I am tired sometimes. But at the end of the day, I am not searching [...]

Great Post !!!

[...] http://jordancooper.wordpress.com/2010/05/28/memorial-day-in-startupland/ “Every day I wake up and I am doing exactly what I want.  Yes, I work hard.  Yes, I am tired sometimes.  But at the end of the day, I am not searching for a break from my everyday life.  There is a fundamental problem with a life where a 3 day weekend puts a hop in your step that won’t return until Labor Day rolls around…” [...]

Awesome post, Jordan – it’s great to read about what you’re putting in to make JumpPost happen.

Reminds me of this tweet Chris Dixon made a while ago, it’s so true: http://bit.ly/9xz6n4

[...] them. “Every day I wake up and I am doing exactly what I want,” the JumpPost co-founder writes. “Yes, I work hard. Yes, I am tired sometimes. But at the end of the day, I am not searching [...]

[...] them. “Every day I wake up and I am doing exactly what I want,” the JumpPost co-founder writes. “Yes, I work hard. Yes, I am tired sometimes. But at the end of the day, I am not searching [...]

[...] them. “Every day I wake up and I am doing exactly what I want,” the JumpPost co-founder writes. “Yes, I work hard. Yes, I am tired sometimes. But at the end of the day, I am not searching [...]

Well said


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    About

    I’m a NYC based entrepreneur. I think there is one metric that can be used to measure the value of a human life and that’s impact. How did you change things? How many people did you touch? How different is the world because you lived in it and how positive was the change that you affected? (p.s. i don’t use spell check…deal with it) You can email me at Jordan.Cooper@gmail.com

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