Go-go dancer. Slighty dark, moderately-witty freelance writer. The world’s worst trophy wife.
These are the only three alternate jobs I imagine when I think about the worst case scenario… failing to find a product/market fit, me giving up, everything going terribly wrong.
Occasionally when I’m lacking creative drive at work I fantasize about my worst case reality – failing my beloved Zirtual – and then of the progression of my 3 “fall back” gigs play through my mind.
After I epically fail, embarrass my family & friends and have exactly negative-zero savings I will start working as a go-go dancer (which is a long shot at best since I’m an awful dancer).
The best I can hope for is they give me a job because I look halfway decent in fuzzy boots and a bikini, the dark lighting is a girl’s best friend and maybe their low on good talent because Burning Man is around the corner.
At the nightclub I’ll meet someone who will feel bad for me (probably because I’m the worst dancer there) and perhaps he needs someone to take care of his kids. With this turn of fate I’ll graduate into my 2nd fall back career of the world’s worst trophy wife…
The joke will be on this poor sap though – since anyone who knows me would tell him that I can’t cook, I dislike children and I’m no good at keeping house. I also have a terrible habit of making men I’m with self-conscious so on top of ignoring this dude’s kids, not making him dinner and generally laying around the house smoking and staring at the pool boy – I’ll be psychosis-inducing.
He’ll go to therapy. I’ll work on my tan and eventually I’m hoping he’ll get so sick of me and his kids will hate me so much that they’ll send me packing at any cost – just so I’ll leave him and his family (which is now in shambles) alone.
I’ll take my hard-earned cash and start traveling the world in pursuit of my 3rd fall back career: the slighty dark, moderately-witty freelance writer. I’m hoping by this time I will figure out a way to get Zirtual back on track since I really do love that damn company and can’t imagine it failing even if I have to pivot faster and more frequently then I did onstage in my past fall-back-pretend-life as a go-go dancer.
So now I’m divored, an ex-dancer, who can’t really get writing gigs because I’m not nearly as witty or dark as I think I am. My parent’s and friends are now not only embarrassed by my business failure but they are mad at me for becoming a go-go dancer versus, say, a librarian and they are doubly disappointed about my failed stint as the world’s worst trophy wife…
But at least at this point I’ll have gotten my head back on straight and I will sink the last of my go-go-dancing-trophy-wife-ing money into getting Zirtual on it’s feet and things will start to pick up, slowly but surely.
And I will work hard. And I will work 7 days a week. And people will wonder if I’m half insane or half brilliant (I’ll be the former). And eventually I will be back to living my dream of building a truly great company.
… but when I get frustrated, or down, or wonder how in the world I can go another day in the bi-polar inducing world that is the San Francisco startup scene… I will start walking through my fall back plan(s) again and see how even in my imaginary worst case scenario, no matter how bad or improbable it gets, I always come back to my baby.