Category Archives: Personal

Why I’m Not A Doctor

When a kid says, “I wanna be a doctor”, the process usually goes:

  • He graduates high school
  • Enters college and enrolls in some form of pre-med program
  • Goes through years of biology and other doctor-ish courses
  • Goes into the hibernation known as “studying for the MCAT”
  • Applies to medical school

Somewhere along that path 90% (actually I just pulled that statistic out of my ass)….but a LARGE percent of these “I wanna be doctors” never make it.

Most of them soon realize they either hate biology, they’re not smart or hardworking enough to score high on the MCAT…or that they don’t want to work so hard to be a doctor after all.

Unfortunately these realizations often come late in college…when they’ve already spent much of their college career attempting to be a doctor.

Well I’m Indian….which either means I’m destined to become a doctor or an engineer.  Both admiral….however as a high school student I couldn’t REALLY tell if I truly wanted to become one of these…simply not enough experience.

However, I was a fortunate little lad…my high school offered this class where you leave school for three hours every other day to shadow different types of doctors. This is nearly HALF the school day you get to dress up in scrubs and follow different doctors as they make their rounds.

This was a two year course…the first year being preparation, the second year actually following doctors.

The 2nd year came around, and it was SO COOL as a student being able to leave everyday in my car (we had special passes which let us freely walk around school).  We got to shadow an allergists, dentists, general practitioners, sports medicine doctors and a lot more.

By shadowing, I mean we followed them everywhere, including their rounds with patients.  Some places occasionally made us do bitch work (like organizing patient records)…but most places really made us feel we worked in the medical industry.

This was a REMARKABLE OPPORTUNITY for myself, because it made me realize something:

I DIDN’T GIVE A SHIT ABOUT BEING A DOCTOR!!

I quickly found out I had the same amount of empathy for others as a crotchety old man.

Have you ever had a great doctor who takes lots of interest in your medical problem?  Yea…that WOULD NOT have been me.

While I enjoyed leaving school for this, I really detested the whole aura of being in a medical facility.  I never think, “I’d love to spend 12 hours a day in a place filled with a bunch of sick people!”  It’s just not my thaang.

95 year old man slowly dying a painful death in a hospital?  PUT THIS GUY OUT OF HIS MISERY! Why spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to keep him alive? What’s the end goal of that?

Sometimes I just didn’t understand what the point was.  If I ever became a doctor, I’d be more like Dr. Kevorkian.

I must admit certain specialties such as the allergist had it pretty decent: He had very normal hours, mostly healthy patients (with the exception of runny noses), a family-like community of patients and staff, and roughly $400,000/year in profit. He basically owned a business he could eventually sell.  That was neat….

However the monotony of this got to me.  He enjoyed what he did….but it’s not something I would want.  It simply didn’t interest me.

It was around this time I started getting very much into business and reading about business men whom I admired.  The way they made money was scalable….the way doctors made money was much like how the janitor made money: by the hour.

This did not appeal to me.

A doctor has a very likely chance of making a great living for the rest of their working lives….but a business person can either go broke, do as well, or make it REALLY big….without necessarily having to be present all the time.

THIS appealed to me!

Mixing Business and Pleasure for Profit

I enjoy: Being productive.

I also enjoy: Hanging out with friends.

What if I COMBINED those two??  GENIUS!

Fortunately I currently own a rave company, so that often isn’t hard.

Just recently we scouted out a spot in Austin to have a little nighttime picnic (always one of my favorite thing to do), and I happened to have an LED Frisbee in my trunk.  It was a product sample I’d been meaning to take videos and pictures of.

It lights up at night, so naturally we started tossing it around, so I started snapping a few pics to post them on House Of Rave:

It’s fun to have fun AND be productive at the same time!  Click on any of those pictures and they take you to the HoR product page….these pictures help sell more Frisbee’s, and we had fun doing it.

I did however find out the limitations of an LED Frisbee…apparently they CANNOT get run over by a truck and survive in one piece.  I was  overly aggressive in a throw, and it went in the street.  A few moments later traffic started driving over it, and one lucky truck hit it.

The result:

With the exception of a partially-broken side….the thing still worked!

However, tossing a fast-spinning disc with sharp plastic edges isn’t always safe…so I decided it was the end for this Ole’ Yeller.

Like any male under 30 who’s about to throw something away, I thought it be MORE fun to first COMPLETELY DESTROY it…then throw it away!

Let me tell ya….that was one tough Frisbee.

Doing Handstands

I don’t know WHERE this whole “Handstands Pictures” thing came from, I just know I probably have more of these pictures than the average population.

Probably because

  • Most people can’t do them
  • They’re hard to capture on camera
  • You look weird trying to do a handstand on the Great Wall of China:


(Notice Tim Ferris watching in amazement in the background)

uʍop ǝpısdn sıɥʇ ǝʇıɹʍ ll,ı ‘spuɐʇspuɐɥ ɟo ɹouoɥ uı

I Love Klipsch Speakers

Back in late high school and early college I started a couple of businesses and they all made some modest degree of money.  The funny thing was the money went to my single student checking account…and I didn’t know what to do with it!

It just accumulated. I didn’t understand it was like cash.

Then one day I discovered ordering stuff online. I could pay for stuff online with that number it said on my bank statement. SWEET!

One of my very first purchases was high quality speakers. I’m a bit of an audiophile and love high quality sound.

I researched every computer speaker out there and ended up buying the Klipsch Promedia 4.1 sound system which was the best (and most expensive) set of computer speakers I found.

I….was…..BLOWN AWAY by them.

It truly was one of the most satisfying purchases I ever made. THX certified, 400 watts, BOOMING sub woofer (but not just booming…but REALISTIC bass)….the list went on. Watching movies and listening to music on this audio system in a tiny dorm room was the coolest damn thing in the world to me.

I had all four satellite speakers setup in my tiny dorm and the huge sub woofer setup under my desk (when turned up, it would rattle my plastic desk so violently I couldn’t use my computer mouse)!

I actually found pictures of my old setup.  You can see only one speaker in this setup (and apparently someone played a little joke in the top-right corner):

More speakers lining the room.  The funny thing was even the small 40 watt system I had before was more than enough to fill these small dorms with loud music.  But going 10X more was WAY more fun ;-)

It was kind of funny looking through these old pictures, here was our door (yes, I know I spelled “weird” wrong):

About 9 years later, my poor Klipsch speakers have finally run their course. Something is wrong with the amplifier and it doesn’t seem easily fixable.

Anyhow…usually I’d be pissed something I bought is no longer working. But not these.

I’d gladly pay $400+ again for the pleasure of listening to these.  I loved those speakers.

So the last several places I’ve lived I only used two of the satellite speakers, and the bass never gets turned all the way.  The system is powerful enough to keep all the settings at half and still sound incredible.  So I just bought a new set of them, except it has only 2 satellite speakers, and the system is also wireless (so I can play music from my laptop and have it stream directly to the speakers).

Cheers to the speakers that have caused so very, very, very many of my neighbors to complain, call the cops and make them just downright frustrated to live next to me.

Being a Parsi Zoroastrian

Of all the emails and questions I get from maintaining this blog, I every once in a while get this one from the curious:

What ethnicity are you?

I get this question quite frequently in real life also. Technically the answer is: I’m Indian.

Most people think I don’t look “typical Indian” whatever that means….and I’m not.

I’m a Parsi Zoroastrian.

  • Zoroastrianism = My religion, one of the oldest known religious in the world.
  • Parsi = A Zorastrian from India or Pakistan. Both my parents are from India.

I won’t go into great detail about the religious aspects of Zoroastrianism, you can read the Wikipedia entry for more info on that.

I will however discuss the cultural aspects which I think are far more interesting. This is a widely debated number, but there are less than 150,000 Zoroastrians in the world (and that’s one of the higher figures). That means we’re only .0025% of the world population. Not big.

Whenever an inquisitive person begins questioning about the religion and I’m not in the mood to engage in that conversation, I quickly end it by stating, “We’re kind of like the Jews of India.” I see a lot of similarities between Zoroastrians and Jewish people:

  • We have historically been business owners, lawyers, bankers, doctors, accountants etc..
  • We have big noses and are stingy with money. OK OK, that might be a little stereotypical…although for me it’s pretty on the nose (pun intended)!
  • We’ve gone through long periods of religious persecution (in fact in Iran it’s still particularly bad).
  • Had our own version of the Holocaust.
  • We have a Navjote before we’re teenagers which is esentially the equivalent of Bar Mitzvah.

Now one of the main differences of Zoroastrianism compared to the major faiths of the world is that you cannot convert into Zoroastrianism. Whether or not people should be allowed to convert in or not is a harshly debated subject within the Zoroastrian community .

I honestly try not to get myself entagled in this incessant debate, but with such dwindling numbers and a birth-t0-death ratio of 1:5, it’s a mathematical certainty the numbers will be reduced to nothing with the current system.

Anyhow, those are longer term predictions. Within my lifetime it’ll still be around.

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I think it’s been an inherently very positive influence on my life to have grown up a Zoroastrian with a large base of Zoroastrian friends.  Some of the things I like about it:

  • When you meet another Zoroastrian person, it’s highly likely you’ll know some mutual friends.
  • The bond between a newly met Zoroastrian person is automatically extremely high.
  • No matter what part of the world you meet in, it’s very likely you’ll see that person again.
  • People help each other out in tight-knit communities.
  • Very high sense of belonging.

So if you ever meet another Zoroastrian….drop my name.  There’s actually a strong chance they’ll know me!

An ode to good parents

…I think I have a pretty good life….and there’s two people I primarily owe that ALL to:

My parents.

I had a great childhood because of them.

I was taught I could pretty much do anything.

My parents never forced choices on me like a lot of my other friends’ parents.

They were unbelievably fair with me.

They were never overbearing.

They always had their own lives and didn’t make me and my brother the center of their whole universe.

I grew up in an extremely loving relationship.

They always have fun with everything they do.

When I was younger talking amongst friends, I would hear, “OMG I never wanna be like my parents”.  I told everyone the opposite.  I DO want to be like them!

Warren Buffet always attests much of his success to being born into a winning hand of the “The Ovarian Lottery” because he was born at a certain time, to great parents in a nation that rewards hard work and innovation.

I feel I got the same :-)
Love you mom & dad (I know you read this)!

Doing Handstands with Tim Ferris

I don’t consider Tim Ferris a HUGE celebrity like Elton John or Lance Armstrong, but I do consider him a big celebrity in certain circles.

Most of the people I know have heard of Tim Ferris, or at least occasionally read his blog….and if they’re even semi-nerds, they DEFINITELY know him.

Ok, typing this is boring, I’m jumping to the pen:




It was actually pretty fascinating to hear him talk about his quick rise to fame…and how it was no accident.  He used a lot of VERY CLEVER and untraditional ways to get his book out there…and it’s amazing how well it worked.

I have a new found respect for him.

It was also  very cool that some very high up people at the conference during their speeches said how The Four Hour Work Week changed their lives! I previously thought the book was meant for not-very-big-time people…but I was very wrong.