Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Response to Optionality Comments

I have a good idea for another stream of consciousness rant but it will have to wait, because I've gotten some thoughtful comments on my last post.  So here we go:

Post a Comment On: Taking a Shot

1 – 4 of 4
Blogger RaleighRunner said...
Options aren’t intrinsically valuable; they are only valuable to the extent there is uncertainty or variation. You were a professional poker player (hard to imagine a job with more uncertainty both in terms of outcomes and preferences; your enjoyment of it changed from month to month) where as she worked for google which I imagine is pretty much at the other end of the spectrum in terms of variance. Wouldn’t it make sense that she values options less than you? Sorry if I sound like a stalker; I’ve been reading the blog for awhile, which I suppose actually does make me something of a stalker.
February 23, 2015 at 10:51 AM
I don't want to rain on anybody's parade, but your bona fides as a stalker are really lacking.  You have to do more than just read a blog to get that street cred, at least in my book which this essentially is.  If you want the title you're going to need to present more evidence.  I disagree with your first statement, but it's all semantics.  There is always uncertainty and variation in any situation in life worth actually discussing and considering the value of.  Sure if you go to lunch and order a sandwich you've had before you don't really need an option on what to do if it sucks.  If you take it back to your desk and it's not up to snuff even if the place will replace it for you you're not going to drive back and ask them to remake it.  That option would actually have no value.  But that's a trivial situation.  Anything real you do is going to come with some level of uncertainty.  If you want to go surfing for the day it could be way too cold or the waves way too big or way to small or you could get hurt or whatever.  If you try to drive to the top of Saddleback in your F-150 you COULD get a flat tire and therefore you SHOULD have a spare.  I swear to fucking god this happened....we got a flat tire like 500 yards from the top of the fucking mountain and she then informed me she hadn't replaced the spare.  Did we immediately start calling for a tow truck?  No.  We tried to fix it!  I wanted to call for help because that's an OPTION and you need to put it in place as soon as possible.  Forget the fact that driving up a mountain without a spare tire is one of the dumbest things you could ever do (some would argue you should actually have TWO spare tires for such a trip), but once you're flat and it's a national holiday and everyone is drinking and you don't have much cell coverage you need to start trying to get help as soon as possible.  Nope, she was sure we could fix it.  Someone had a can of fix a flat.  Seriously, that was the plan, drive 9 miles down the mountain over giant ass rocks with a fix a flatted wheel.  Yeah that worked out super good.  So like three hours after we got the flat and we're sitting on the side of the road with a shredded tire and cut brake line (lol....yes, she tried to drive on the rim and cut the break line, probably exposing me to like 200 millimorts) she then starts calling tow trucks.  Obviously nobody gets up there and the truck sits on the side of the mountain over night after we catch a ride down with a ranger.  She took the next day off of work and spent something like $2000 and 12 hours getting the truck down the next day.  Moving right along, sure you're correct that a job at Google would make you devalue options, especially if you're sure that's the best thing you could ever be doing.  And sure walking the professional poker wire is going to make you really value any sort of net you can put beneath you.  But I'd actually argue that her and I gravitated towards these things because we were already THAT way to begin with.
Blogger bravos1 said...
Instead of having amazing sex with Rihanna, just pencil into your calendar "have amazing sex with Rihanna or Nikki Minaj"

Money, as you mentioned, will bring forth many options. I have far more options in every sense of the the word than ever I had growing up at or below the poverty line. Having options is an amazingly important thing to me as well, but not utilizing those options to make you/your life better (how ever you measure it) is nothing but a waste of said options. But, having options can definitely complicate ones life. While this may seem counter-intuitive to some, I think it is pretty clear that simplicity equates to comfort for many people and having options is the opposite of simplicity.

You may not see it this way, but knowing you and talking to you, as little as it has been over the past year or so, I see you enjoying your life more now than before. I also think you see where your life can actually go, which is both exciting and depressing at the same time because you're not there yet. Keep strong and keep up the good fight and remember to explore and more importantly, ENJOY your options thoroughly!
February 23, 2015 at 2:23 PM
This is fucking brilliant and to some extent equates simply to "ignorance is bliss".  If you don't have any choices and don't know any better you're not going to waste any time thinking about what you have to do.  I definitely ran into decision fatigue in my days at commerce, and a similar effect certainly happens at a macro level of my life.  I am happiest when life is at it's most simple, but at the same time I know deep down that I have options and can make lots of choices to make things better or different.  Like right now I had the option to take a few months off, so I did.
Blogger mike l. said...
not to be nitpicking, it's a quality post, but you missed a zero here:

"(40/80 horses need 30k bankrolls)"
February 23, 2015 at 8:17 PM
If this is a thinly veiled attempt to ask for a $4/$8 stake I'm a little light but do know a guy....
Blogger psych said...
If you cherish having your option so much that you avoid taking it for fear of losing it, then its value never materializes... Don't keep Rihanna waiting too long! ;-)
February 23, 2015 at 9:13 PM
Absolutely correct.  I over value options and consequently have trouble acting decisively.  But I know this, and knowing is at least half the battle.

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