Over a week ago, I went to the kitchen to make some tea.
With the stove turned on, it’s as simple as waiting 20 minutes for the water to get hot enough before putting the tea bags in.
Standing outside now away from the kitchen during a chilly night in Santo Domingo of Mexico City, I look out at the underdeveloped houses across the street.
There’s a certain beauty to “the barrio.”
Right away, the neighbor known as Andrea walks over and makes small talk with me.
He’s a Mexican dude who prefers to be called Andrea for some reason.
Anyway, he is making small talk with me as he was in the kitchen cooking whatever at the same time.
And, soon enough, the other neighbor known as “Jimmy” shows up also.
As I wrote her, Jimmy is one of those Latin Americans who, for whatever reason, prefers to have a more gringo name.
When I first moved in here, a friend of mine named Gino asked me “why all the fake names?”
To this day after 3 months here, even I don’t know still.
Weird shit, huh?
Anyway, we’re all making small talk about life in Mexico.
Andrea was from some small town in Estado de Mexico and began talking with me about how fucked up Estado is.
I used to live there actually but his stories were pretty fucked.
And, soon enough, the conversation turned to me.
Why do I live in this neighborhood?
Do I see myself living in Mexico forever?
And “what do I do for work?”
After 3 months here, neither one of them knew what I did for work.
To be fair, I tend to keep to myself outside of a few close people I have in life.
I’m like an American Osama Bin Laden.
I move a lot. Nobody can find me. I live in isolation. I got a few close people. Nobody knows how I make my money. I like bitches & hoes.
The Esoteric Osama Lifestyle.
But I guess it was appropriate timing for them to ask because both of them were actually moving from the apartment.
As of this writing, Andrea is still here but will be gone in a week and Jimmy already left.
The landlord managed to replace Jimmy pretty quickly with a new woman who is a student of psychology in UNAM.
Her name is Jinet or something like that (however you spell that).
Anyway, to be fair to Andrea & Jimmy, even I don’t know what I do for a living.
It’s almost comical.
What the fuck do I do for a living?
How would I describe it?
I’ve been asked this question a hundred times over my 5 years in Mexico but I still don’t know.
But, in the moment, I told them that I “do marketing.”
They both assumed I was a student of UNAM as the area I live in has no real value to foreigners beyond studying at UNAM.
Though, being honest with you, I don’t “do marketing.”
But that was my excuse that night.
“I do marketing.”
Funny enough, I got asked this question in the same week by another person.
Waiting for the Gorditas
During the same week, I found myself waking up with “slightly shaking hands” and a reach for a bottle.
After an hour, found myself ready to go about my day.
I want a bite to eat.
Went outside to order some gorditas from a cute chick across the street.
As she got ready making them, I went to buy some tea at a nearby store.
And there was a white Mexican woman who looked a little bit older sitting down.
Honestly, given how white she looked (blonde hair included), I thought she was from Argentina!
No, she was from “Estado de Mexico” and moved here for better work.
And she gave me the same question after opening a topic on the “devaluation of the peso” in Mexico.
I threw my 2 cents on that topic (saying it helps me – ha!) and we made nice small chat since that point.
In response to her question, I also said “marketing.”
And, to my surprise, she understood what “marketing” meant.
Just like Jimmy.
Which is a side point – sometimes there are certain English words that you didn’t know that Latin Americans widely adopted.
In English, we obviously use words that were adopted from other languages like kindergarten and mosquito.
It’s just a little bit weirder to see words of your native language more widely adopted here.
Not weird in a bad way but just “a little bit weird.”
And you don’t always know which ones are more commonly understood by folks here.
“Marketing” is one apparently.
But, fuinny enough, marketing isn’t what I always told people here.
My “story” for how I earn my living changes by the year.
Let’s go back in time.
Matt the Professor
When I first moved to Mexico City, I told women that I “am a researcher/professor/academic.”
The reason was simple.
During my last year of college, I had to write a 200 page thesis on the Zapatista movement.
I like writing.
Then, when I finished, I had to contemplate which country to move to after college.
My choices were Colombia, China and Mexico.
China because a guy I knew was offering me a job to teach English there but I chose against it because I don’t give a fuck about China (have no interest in that country and I feel more comfortable in Latin America than Asia, don’t speak Mandarin and heard that Chinese people eat with their mouth open and I knew I’d go crazy if I had to hear that everyday).
Regardless of if Chinese people eat with their mouth open, that was the final straw. I just knew I’d go batshit if I lived in a country where that happens and, truth be told, I didn’t give enough fucks about China to research if that was true or not before making a decision.
Colombia was another option because I had finished time recently in Colombia and wouldn’t have minded going back.
And then you had Mexico.
Honestly, I sold myself the idea of “mexico, why not?” while thinking about this major ass thesis I had to write.
But it’s ironic because I never moved back to the area where the Zapatistas are – Chiapas.
I went to Mexico City.
Might as well have moved to Ciudad Juarez.
Anyway, while I didn’t do any real research on the Zapatistas afterwards, I just told people that I am “a researcher.”
And, for some odd reason, women dug it.
I have no idea why.
But I have plenty of experience telling women that I am “x, y and z” when it comes to the career question and Mexican women seem to really find “researchers” fuckable.
I have no idea why.
I just remember that it brought a lot more interest from the women I was speaking with versus the other bullshit career ideas I’ve told women.
Oddly enough, telling women that you “own a business” or “work in marketing” is not very fuckable.
They still fuck but they don’t ask anywhere near the amount of questions about the fictional job.
And I have told plenty of women in the years after that I “own a business” or “am in marketing.”
They simply never ask as many questions about either of the above compared to the job title of being “researcher.”
And it is odd.
You’d think “business dude” would be more interesting than “researcher” but I guess not!
Or maybe I don’t know how to sell it as well as I do “researcher.”
So, in my years here, there’s only been two job titles that I’ve told women that have gotten the best responses.
For one, it’s “researcher.”
And the other is one I have never told women until after we fucked but it has always generated a VERY positive response.
And that is “I work in porn.”
When I tell chicks that, it’s more common for them to gain A SHIT ton of interest.
Almost like they see me as some “dangerous” character or kinky or something.
Whatever the right word is.
Outside of that, sometimes dancing around the question or not giving a real answer can sometimes spike their interest even more in my experience.
Like leaving it as a “mystery” or something.
Though that works less for women in their early 30s looking for a man to settle down with.
Then they get annoyed if you don’t answer.
And, truth be told, telling women I “work in porn” is as accurate as you can get (even if it's just promoting affiliate links).
But not one I feel like telling women until after I fuck them because I’ve never felt like testing the waters to see how the response would be.
“So What Do You Do, Jack?”
These days, it’s a little bit misleading to say I “work in porn.”
I do affiliate marketing.
Try to get random chicks to be cam models on the internet and I earn a percentage of their earnings.
Or try to get lonely dudes in places like Gary, Indiana to click on my links to cam websites (or similar websites) where they spend money on sex related stuff.
Still, for obvious reasons, it’s a little bit questionable if you should come out of the gates saying to chicks from Tinder “I work in porn.”
Part of me wonders if it’d be an easier sell but who knows.
Either way, it doesn’t matter because saying I work “in marketing” doesn’t hurt me when trying to fuck them.
So I never care to test the waters on it.
I’ve only noticed that, on a few occasions, saying I “work in porn” turns them on a lot when I do say it.
The Long Run
In the long run, I’ve wondered about it really.
It’s a weird feeling to feel like you can’t give “the full truth” about what you do for work to people.
Imagine you lived that life where you just felt like you couldn’t tell people how you earn your money.
It’s weird as fuck.
Both when the question comes up and in retrospect when you think about it.
I’m cool with it as long as I don’t think about it.
Doesn’t bother me on a daily basis.
But, when I do think about it, it does feel weird in a negative way.
It also feels lonely because sometimes you wish you had people you could relate to.
But you don’t.
Life can feel very lonely sometimes (but among this reason and other reasons much beyond what I’m saying here and nothing to do with the career question).
Still, affiliate marketing is a good skill I guess.
Could be used for other industries.
And, truth be told, even if I tell someone “I work in affiliate marketing,” they don’t always get that either.
I have done that.
But, funny enough, Latin Americans can sometimes find it confusing.
Granted, I’m sure plenty of folks could find it confusing in the US also.
Maybe if you went to a small town in North Dakota or something.
But, as a side point, I find Latin Americans to be – broadly speaking – more “behind the times” on average when compared to folks in the US regarding their understanding of working online to make money.
You got plenty who are “behind the times” in the US also without question.
We got our fair share of it!
But, as a broad point, Latin Americans seem to be “a little more behind the times” on average.
And I emphasize “on average” because every country is different.
Young millennial types in Mexico City will find it less confusing than those in Pachuca de Soto.
Though, given the effects of Covid on remote work starting 2 years ago, I am finding more Latin Americans who are being more exposed to the idea of “working from home” and “making money from the internet.”
I almost feel like the Covid stuff has “sped up” their growth of knowledge in this topic on average.
Going back to the subject anyhow, there is that question of what I do for a living.
It’s nothing formal but can pay the bills easy enough.
Though, like I said before, I do think there’ll come a day where I will feel more strongly to “move away” from anything porn related.
Though just marketing, it still makes for awkward conversation as to what to tell people.
And, if I ever decide to start a family someday, I think it’d have to be something to drop.
So what will my answer to the “career” question be in the future?
Probably something related to “copywriting” or “affiliate marketing” or whatever.
But, like I said, I can see plenty of Latin Americans finding that confusing still.
Which is why I once drifted to telling people that I “run a business.”
I did that in part because I do own a website on travel and making affiliate income from it.
Nothing porn related even.
And told people that I “run a travel business.”
They got confused and thought I run a tourist agency.
And, about two years ago, I remember moving into a new apartment and a neighbor got excited about “wow, you do affiliate marketing and run websites!?!?”
He wanted to see my websites.
Back then, the ones that “bought the bread” were porn related ones.
So I tried to kindly “change the topic” because I wasn’t going to show those.
Since then, I started a few non-porn related websites to make affiliate income and actually designed them.
Even if they don’t actually make me real money beyond a purchase for a burger at Chilis every month, I’m now prepared to show people that if they are insistent on seeing the websites.
“Here the the PG websites. Yes, my website on Astronomy and Telescopes is what makes the bank. You can call me a millionaire.”
Anyway, it’s always been an odd question to me and, like I said, I hope to someday arrive at a point where it’s not an odd question.
In a way, I'd like to say it makes me feel like Henry Hill in Goodfellas when Karen asks him "what do you do?"
Unfortunately, my life isn't THAT exciting where I'm a gangster.
That’s all I got to say anyhow.
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Thanks for reading.