Yes, sitting in front of the computer = working
For some reason, people tend to snicker at me when I say I work from home, then lecture me on the necessity of waking up at the butt-crack of dawn, join the plethora of commuters braving the other plethora of commuters - all intent on pentrating the impenetrable traffic that is Jakarta's, meet zillions (read: those at the office, somewhere between 5-20 same people each day) , and earn an honest living.
Usually, though, after saying that my few-days of work can earn me twice of what they earn in a month, the only thing you would hear is the grinding of teeth.
Plenty of people make blogs these days. Blogs has been a trend much like fungus in rainy season. I still remember the days back in year 2000, when I had *my* first blog. It was too generic in design and didn't have too many templates to choose from. So I tried to modify the codes. I did a superb job at it that some of my followers begged me to 'pimp' theirs. Lots of colored scrollbars, divs and layers and iframes with fancy schmancy CSS-ing later, I realized that this could be a career path.
I therefore quit my job (2001) as an admin manager and started asking if anyone would like to make a website. I hacked several copies of webdesign softwares, and sold my first design in 2003. Believe it or not, it was much harder to convince people that they *need* to have a website back then than it does now.
But hey, I also have other skills. I can translate. I thus filled the gaps (of income) by doing translations. Don't get me wrong, as much as I love designing, translating is also something I enjoy doing. Plus, it pays nearly as much for lesser work (exchanging words to another language rather than compiling codes to make a visible imagery).
Nowadays, however, with the dozens of free templates available at any random blog-hosting sites, it appears that everyone - literally everyone - can make a blog. It takes a trained (read: ones who recognizes that those pretty colors of the templates consist of nothing but two- or three-columned contents+menu+header) eyes to.. well, to roll them eyes at those "blog designs."
And just recently, I figured out that mom has been brainwashed by the 'outside world' to believe that my work isn't really work. She kept trying to sabotage me from doing a design (read: sit in front of the computer all day) and asking me to do other things.
Yesterday, after about half-a day of work wasted on her demands, I finally decided to show her what I was making and tell her: "you finish this. By the end of the day. I'll do whatever you want." -- needless to say, the html part stumped her big time. Heck, even the WYSWYG part stumped her. Then I told her: "this is why I require absolute concentration to do this. And yes, this ish pays. This ish, which I could have done in three days max, would pay me ten times what you make in a day."
So yes, I'm hurt. I'm hurt at people insisting that 9-to-5 jobs are better than home-working. I'm hurt at people saying that braving the impassable roads of Jakarta to get to work is better than surfing the smooth, un-tampered information highway to get work. I've done the first route. I've died on the road to *get* to the damn job on daily basis. I've faced multitudes of people with their multitude faces. I've been there, and I don't like it. I chose the other road.
I wonder what will it take for me to convince people that I don't need too many 'friends' - unlike mother who seems to revel on the zillions of friends she has. I don't need to be in front of people to make a living. Sure, project-based works would require me to get out of the house once in a while - to meet prospective clients and all. But I don't have to be at the client's beck and call - unlike an office where one is obliged to be the at the boss' beck and call. I'm bored of them all.
Please take a look at my work, mother - and everybody else, and realize that this ish is NOT as easy as you think it is. Just because a lot of 'hausfraus' have made their generic blogs, it does not mean designing one can be done with one arm tied behind your back.
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