Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Knowing and Undergoing

“…a man who knows is quite different than a man who undergoes.”
--from Foucalt’s Pendulum by Umberto Eco.

It’s been said in a million and one different ways. I know that everyone already knows this, but being reminded is always a good thing. Knowing something is not the same as actually doing it. Once I finally decided to make IT my ‘career’, I started actually putting some study in, and started getting some certifications. My first cert (-ification, not the breath mint) came in ’01, my CCNA, and boy was I pumped! Judging by the adverts, riches with little effort would be mine for the asking. I hate the idea of attending a money gouging college, who needs it? (I still don’t think that people necessarily “need” college. OK, some definitely do, but that’s for another time and place) Another basic cert or two and I’ll swim in ginormous salary pools. Oops.

It didn’t take long for me to come across the term “lab rat”. This is someone with the requisite certifications who has no practical experience. Well, shit, time to have a conversation with myself.

“Self, I guess I can’t fool anyone into blindly handing over a high-paying job, what options do I have now? “

“Get your dumb ass into the trenches and start working”, Self replied.

Good advice. Now, after a few years of actual work, I’m nearly finished with my undergraduate degree (hey, shut up, at least I’ll get it done before 30) and have been paying dues for the last few years. I’m still not exactly where I would like to be, but I’m a hell of a lot closer that I was, and I’ve learned a lot more along the way.

A coulple of nights ago, after reading the beginning quote, I finally realized that Self was basically giving me the same advice that it had in ’01, but this time it applied to poker. Get in the trenches. Play through that shit. Gut it out.

I’ve spent much of my time as a poker “lab rat”. Lot’s of study, reading, and writing, but not so much actual ‘undergoing’. I’ve read all over 2+2 about downswings much larger than mine, and here I was with the audacity to bitch and moan about a minimal 30 BB swing. Iggy had a tough month last month (or was it the month before?) and made mention of it. He gutted through it and has emerged golden, likely on top of his game more than ever. Pauly has made mention of the same in his documentations. There are countless others out there who have, and are, playing through it.

It was tough to admit this to myself, but it had to be done, and now that it’s on the page, it’s strangely liberating. I offer many apologies for boring (and likely annoying) those who stop by here, and of course, many thanks for actually coming back.

.There has been enough knowing. It’s time to start undergoing.