air born

Work is boring

Very boring. Just write some scripts here. Glue and plumb there. Requires some thought and experience, yes. But nothing that feels like “engineering”.

I mean, it started out exciting since I am new to the cloud world. Once in a while you do get that sweet satisfaction when your lambda finally does what you want it to do. But anybody who knows some coding and AWS can do my job. Also have to learn and work on R applications soon. R is not so bad. But shiny apps are ugly. Hoping it does not suck.

On top of that I am part of “task forces” for tasks I do not care about. Should have refused at the beginning. Faking earnesty is so hard. Why did I do it?

Admitting any of this to anyone makes me sound bitchy. I hate complaining myself. But, even with all these new things going on, I get no feeling of progress.

Why am I okay with all this? Money. Loans, ETFs, rents and bills are now in place. Cannot downgrade. Peace of mind too. Parents think I am such a good son, saving them from the headache of thinking about expenses. Disappointing them is the worst feeling. Hoping my brothers will soon start working themselves. That will help. I dare not say it to their faces though. “Take your time! I got this.”

And this is the life of most software devs. “Heroes of the computing revolution!” My ass. At least, 95% of us are in it for the money. We delude our employers (pretty sure they know by now) and ourselves that we really care about building elegant software. Long discussions and blogs about about architecture and tech stacks. All performative interest, to show that we are constantly thinking about development models. Just because we do not wear suits and use emojis does not mean most of us will not jump ship at the first offer that gives you a 50% hike. Heck, if the software industry paid like carpenting or plumbing, there would have been a severe shortage of these “passionate” developers. Again, there are people who are exceptions to this - I envy those 5%.

It is not like there is anything bad about working just for money. This is unspoken but understood between most recruiters and candidates, across industries. But helps to be honest about it with yourself at least. I fooled myself for a long time. Once admitted this to my manager, but I regretted it back then. Screw it.

But for someone with as low agency as myself, it was a mistake to join a pre-PMF company. Not only am I unenthusiastic about any long-range discussions (and therefore miss out on having any hand in the future of the company), the money is not that good either, for the amount of work I have done. Pretty sure I will never produce as much code as I did this year, ever again. My neck certainly won't allow it. Not that there is always a correlation between code volume and real-world value. But in my case, I think there was. So, if anybody's reading this: if you join an early-stage startup, make sure you have enough of an interest in the problem they are trying to solve, or you will stay frustrated most of the time. Frustrated at your lack of grow and get jealous looking at the growth of your peers who actually give a damn about the company and its goals.

Knowing all this, what are my plans? Not sure. I definitely want to get rich. But getting there without “real” effort seems shallow and unworthy. Is there even a way to get rich without any grind? I do know I will never get rich off of this job or any other software job. Certainly not rich enough to buy any of the cool things I dreamed of owning as a kid.

I need to do something about this. I will not die like this.