What going home with a hooker taught me about my business

These nuggets of wisdom shared by a brothel worker are more useful than most pieces of business advice you’ll read in a book.

Back in my days of crazy clubbing, I was talking to pretty much everyone in the nightclub (as you do) and met a chick with whom I quickly became friends. When the club closed in the early hours of the morning, she invited a bunch of us to go and hang out at her place.

Back in her gorgeous apartment overlooking the water, we sat out on the balcony with her husband while her four-year-old daughter slept inside. In passing conversation, it came out that she worked in a brothel.

I was fascinated by this — not so much by the industry, which I am in no way trying to glamorise — but by the fact she seemed to be relatively normal and not totally screwed up by the whole thing. So I asked her how she did it? How she managed to do her job and maintain a relationship with her husband? How she seemed to be so normal about the whole thing?

And she said to me:

“I find something to love in every client.”

This blew me away. My initial reaction was, “You are a far better woman than me.”

This conversation is something that’s stuck with me over the 10 years since. It’s something I think about often — when stuff gets bad in my business or I think I’ve got it hard, I think back to meeting this chick — to what she must have been going through on a daily basis in order to do her job. And I realise that if she can find a way to love every client, I have no right to bitch or whine.

The further conversation that morning gave me even further distinctions that I’ve carried forward into my business.

Hookers aren’t afraid of the money

It’s a cash-based transaction, baby. And if you don’t like it, that’s too bad. There are no freebies.

Pimping 101

While hookers aren’t afraid of the money – they also don’t do their own sales. On the street it’s the whole pimp culture thing. In a brothel, there’s management. Either way, the girls aren’t expected to do their own haggling. They provide service only.

Hooker Syndrome

Not mine — this is an actual business syndrome, wherein any transaction is worth more to the purchaser beforehand than it is afterwards.

Get your cash up-front and you don’t have to worry about accounts — and you don’t have to worry about chasing them afterwards.

The Ultimate GFE

There’s this concept called the “GFE” — or Girl Friend Experience — wherein the client pays the hooker the compliment that being with her is like being with someone he isn’t paying.

And, of course, the girls foster this. They sell the guys what they want — the “fantasy” — and then give them the dream they’re after — the “GFE”.

Because guys aren’t really buying sex — they’re buying the fantasy.

So what’s the GFE in your business? What are your clients really buying? What do they get on forums and talk about behind your back? What do they say to their mates about you?

When you know this, that’s where the real marketing magic takes place.

Call For Help: Party Music

As those who know me very well will attest, I have a very specific taste in music that doesn’t generally appeal to a lot of people. Furthermore, even though I love my tunes, I totally know that I couldn’t play my music at a party and get the room pumping.

So, I am asking the wider community to help me expand my horizons, and hopefully make my birthday party suck less, by letting me know your favourite party song or songs.

The rules:

  1. You can put 1 or a hundred songs, but please choose songs rather than entire albums.
  2. Please choose songs that you like listening to at parties with friends and that get you in a party mood, not just your favourite songs. This might be the same thing for some, but for most it’s slightly different to their normal taste in music.

Also, please retweet by clicking here and helping me get a larger response!

Mail Headers in Mail.app

If you’re like me and you have accumulated several email addresses over the years, but are wishing to use one email address for everything, here are some Terminal commands that will come in useful. Sure you could write some AppleScript if you were inclined, but save yourself the time and get your hands dirty in some Terminal.

First, to set a reply-to email address:
defaults write com.apple.mail UserHeaders '{"Reply-To" = "First Last <first.last@domain.com>"; }'

Second, permanently change the from email address:
defaults write com.apple.mail UserHeaders '{"From" = "First Last <first.last@domain.com>"; }'

Third, set a BCC email address for archiving and message stores:
defaults write com.apple.mail UserHeaders '{"Bcc" = "Email Archive <email.archive@domain.com>"; }'

And, lastly, do it all in one sexy command:
defaults write com.apple.mail UserHeaders '{"Reply-To" = "First Last <first.last@domain.com>"; "From" = "First Last <first.last@domain.com>";"Bcc" = "Email Archive <email.archive@domain.com>"; }'


The next time you’re looking for an OS X application, don’t ask #lazyweb on Twitter, but instead install the latest must-have for any Mac user, Bodega.

From the website:

We’ve all been there – hunting for that one killer app that would make life so much easier. If only it existed. If only we could find it. With Bodega, you don’t have to spend your time hunting for software – it’s your one-stop for all your software needs.

Bodega really does look like an app to contend with, and once more developers have registered their applications and their database grows it’s usefulness will grow also.


So you’ve probably seen a bit of talk about SHTBOX (Hashtag / Twitter) on Twitter and that is more than likely why you are here. So what is it? Simply put it’s a weekly, informal Twitter meetup, with the idea of taking some of the online friendships out in the real world.

It is not a STUB or any other form of prior meetup and also doesn’t aim to “compete” with any of these events. It is intended to be more regular and less formal than any of the other meetups, with a focus of socialising with likeminded people.

Why SHTBOX? Because it’s funny and keeps with the theme of being informal.
When? Every Friday at 5:30pm.
Where? The Clock Hotel, Surry Hills [MAP]
RSVP? No need, just turn up.

DIY: X-Box Controller Mod

Ever been annoyed at how expensive PC/Mac controllers are, just to find that when compared to console controllers they come up as cheap and inferior? To get around this, simply modify your Classic X-Box controller to work with your PC/Mac.

This guide provides simple, step-by-step instructions to rewiring your controller that even a beginner can follow. There are two primary aims of this particular tutorial:

  1. Mod your controller to work with your PC or Mac
  2. Ensure you aren’t throwing money away and the controller will still work with your X-Box

Note: Please make sure you follow each step closely. It is important because in some areas there are warnings which if overlooked could completely ruin your day.

  • Step 1 - Requirements

    Heatshrink, USB Extension cable, X-Box controller, USB Extension cable, Cutting tools, Electrical tape.

  • Step 2 - Cut

    Cut both ends of the USB extension cable off about 4″ / 10cm from each end.

  • Step 3 - Remove cable casing

    Remove the outer rubber casing from the cable by cutting it with your smaller blade. Expose approximately 1/2″ – 1″ (1-2cm approx) from the end.

  • Step 4 - Remove cable shielding

    Inside the cable will be some highly annoying shielding to protect the cable, some is silver foil and the other is silver wire. Simply discard of all of this.

  • Step 5 - Remove wire casing

    Now expose a short piece of wire from the end of each of wire. Be careful, some of the wires are quite fine and will break easily.

  • Step 6 - Discard yellow wire

    Discard the yellow wire from the X-Box Controller, it’s only necessary for some of the X-Box light guns.

  • Step 7 - Pair your cables

    Pair your cables up. The FEMALE USB matches up with the X-Box end of the cable and the MALE USB matches up with the controller end.

  • Step 8 - Pair femable USB to X-Box adapter end

    This is reasonably obvious. The female end of the USB extension cable goes with the X-Box end of the cable. The reason for this is that we want the male end attached to the controller in order to plug it into your PC/Mac.

  • Step 9 - Cut your heat shrink to length

    Cut off approximately 3″ / 7.5cm of heat shrink, enough to cover all of the exposed wire.

  • Step 10 - Place your heat shrink

    Put the heat shrink over the cable BEFORE joining the wires or else you won’t be able to get it on. I made this mistake once and it was highly annoying.

  • Step 11 - Twist

    Twist the wires together at the end. Black to black, red to red, green to green and, amazingly enough, white to white.

  • Step 12 - Cover twisted pairs with tape

    Place a tiny amount of tape over each of the twisted pairs to ensure that none of the wires can touch each other.

  • Step 13 - Cover exposed parts with heat shrink

    Push your heatshrink down so that it is covering the exposed wire. DO NOT bond the heatshrink until you’ve tested the cables are working.

  • Step 14 - Pair male USB with controller end and repeat

    The male end gets attached to the controller in order to be able to be plugged into the PC/Mac. Repeat steps 9 – 13.

  • Step 15 - Almost-final product for testing

    Test your cables. Use the controller with your X-Box/PC/Mac in order to confirm everything is right. On OSX use Xbox HID Driver for Mac OS X and for Windows XP use XBCD.

  • Step 16 - Final product

    Finally, blast the heatshrink with a hairdryer or use a cigarette lighter to bond the heatshrink with the exposed pieces. Suddenly you have the final product ready to go.

What you should be left with now is a controller that can work with any and all of your devices. This will save you money on shelling out for expensive PC/Mac controllers, giving you a much better quality gaming experience.

I have tried this controller extensively with several Mac games, several emulators on Mac and various other cool stuff and have had no issues at all.

Disclaimer If you break anything along the way, it is so totally not my fault. I am really sorry if the instructions weren’t simple enough, but I am pretty confident they are and no one should run into any issues.

Blog Recommendation: TechMiso

One of the hardest things about blogging and reading blogs is trying hard not to spend time writing rubbish content, but even more importantly, reading rubbish content. Over the years I have tried a gamut of different RSS readers, both online and offline, and I have also subscribed to many, many blogs most of which I no longer read for one reason or another.

So when I come across a blog that seems particularly inspired and has some content worth sharing, I am going to take the time to make recommendations. Recently, I’ve started reading a very strong blog called TechMiso, a blog that I believe I really should share. Like any technology blog there is an amount of it that I skim over, but the articles I find interesting to my own technology interests are well written, informed and most importantly, interesting.

TechMiso is the brain child of Rich Chuckrey, who I admittedly don’t know very well, and Scott Jarkoff, someone who I met during my time as an admin at deviantART and have looked up to as a writer and blogger for quite some time.

While the blog is in it’s infancy, so far I have read quite a few interesting articles specifically focusing on technology issues that matter today. If you’re looking for another blog to add to your Google Reader account, this is one to watch and I would recommend checking it out!