Why the silence…

Monday, 23 August 2010, 22:07 | Category : Life & Stuff, Loaves
Tags : , ,

I haven’t been this silent on my blog in quite a while and I think the reason for this is that the stuff that is absorbing me the most at the moment is stuff I’m completely not used to blogging about. But maybe I should just go ahead and try…

Internet auctions
One of my goals at this time is to dejunk my room (not the most important one, but it is on the list of my 10 goals for the year). And as I’m also in a state of money shortage at the moment (and feeling very lucky that I have extremely understanding parents in that regard), I decided I’d try to sell off most of my CDs. Considering I only really listen to them when there’s a lot of noise outside (for example building work around or in our house), it seems idiotic to have around 90 of them, so I’m attempting to cut down. My music tastes have changed quite a bit since I was in my teens anyway and I haven’t bought much more recently, so most of the sorting wasn’t even that challenging. In the end I ended up putting over 60 of the CDs up for auction.
The process of selling the CDs on-line has been quite interesting. I’ve never done it before and I’ve rarely made bids for stuff either. So here are some observations:

  • Most of the bidding happens literally during the last minute of the auction. So it’s best if the auction finishes in the evening, so that everyone who wants to bid at the last minute can do so. Auctions which finished in the middle of the day were less popular, even if many people were watching them.
  • Classical music is actually easier to sell than pop, rock and that sort of thing. Almost all of my classical music was sold to somebody, but a lot of my pop/rock stuff was not. I thought it would be the other way round, but there you go! Oddly enough, my most watched auction was the complete works of Wacław z Szamotuł. So obscure classical music is clearly the way to go!
  • It’s best to set the prices low. I think many of my things would not have been sold if I had set the price high. And as I sold a lot of items I amassed quite a lot of money anyway. The asking price for most of my CDs was around 5-9zł, but I should get almost 500zł for all that I sold.
  • CD collectors (as they were the people buying most of my stuff) are a weird and very detail-orientated bunch ;) I got lots of questions like - if you look at the CD in direct light are there any minuscule scratches on it? Also, I was surprised to find that Wojciech Kilar’s “The Portrait of the Lady” soundtrack was so much in demand. Auction started at 9zł and finished at over 40zł. Apparently it’s a collector’s item and I had no idea…
  • Photos are important. They can be very bad quality, but if you don’t have one, the item is unlikely to be bought.
  • And finally - wrapping the stuff and sending it all out is a huge pain :]

All in all this seems to be a good method of getting rid of stuff, so once I have some time I’m going to try selling off some more things too!

Business Networking
I’ve started my own business a while back, but I’ve not been doing well with it because of stupid inhibitions and fears. It’s been rather interesting actually and even though it’s going badly I’ve not regretted it. I’ve learnt a lot about myself from the experience. I think I’ve finally worked through some of my issues, so hopefully once I’m done with my September exams I’ll be able to get the business going properly!
And on that note, I did my first business networking session on Wednesday. It was a sort of lecture about how to get big clients, which included a short session of networking also. It was rather weird - basically you’re in a crowded room and you walk up to people and ask them what they do and exchange business cards. I’ve always thought of myself as a rather socially impaired person, so I found it very bizarre that I actually enjoyed it! :) It’s made me realize very clearly where my social problems actually are and that I do have social strengths too. I actually have just three main problems:

  • I hate clubbing, any sort of parties which involve people getting drunk and I don’t like “going out for a beer”. The problem is those are the most popular ways in which people socialize! :-/
  • After a period of socializing, I need some quality time alone. Otherwise I get very tense, tired and grumpy (which is not a good mood for further socializing ;)).
  • I’m not good with and have no patience for small talk. In the words of wikipedia:
    Small talk is conversation for its own sake, or “?comments on what is perfectly obvious.”

    In other words, as long as I see a purpose to the conversation (there’s an actual exchange of information going on), then I’m happy. I suppose I’m not the worst person in the world in this regard (I have met people who are even worse than me at small talk ;)), but on the whole, small talk just isn’t my thing.

The business networking session did not fall under any of these points, so even though it was a pretty heavy form of socializing (I met over 20 new people in less than 30min.) and even though I initialized most of the conversations, I was absolutely fine and enjoying myself! How weird is that?
And another thing - there were a lot of cool people around, the kind I like the energy of. It’s nice to be amongst people who are so positive and who are really taking life in their own hands. I loved the general vibe. And I actually met two women, who I really really connected with. I hope I get to see them again. I might have a good business opportunity with one of them, which would be absolutely awesome cause she was fab :) So fingers crossed that that comes through. Odd how that sort of connection can happen in less than 5 minutes, but it can.
In fact I’ve started wondering whether I shouldn’t have a go at speed dating ;) I always thought that meeting so many people in so little time was not my thing, but obviously I stand corrected :]

New Blog
And finally, I suppose the other thing that’s been on my mind a lot of late is the new version of my blog. I’m still a long way from finishing it, but just to prove I am working on it, here are two screenshots of what I’ve got so far (I’ve spent most of my time on the spam-filtering system, so there’s not that much to show, but still :)). Click on the thumbnails to see them properly:

New Blog - Main Page
New Blog - Main Page

New Blog - Entry Page

The sidebar will come later, once I get some of the less basic features in.

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