Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Monkey Business

When I was in college, my allowance was 200 pesos. A week. That’s 50 pesos a day. You see, our house was only one jeepney ride away from school, and I would have my lunch at home, so that amount was actually enough for. However, I wanted more things in life. Thus, I started a small business. I was a “pirate.”

Well...not this kind of pirate. (Image is from this site.)
My classmates would give me a list of songs that I would download. We had Internet connection at home, but we were on dial-up, which was not fast enough for the job. Thus, I would download during off-peak hours when Internet surfing was free. I would leave the computer on while sleeping, and the next morning, downloading would be done. If I already have a copy of the songs in my hard drive, I could skip this step.

Once I have all the songs requested, I would save them in a CD, which I bought at this store in Quiapo (CD-R King was not that popular then). After being (or at least trying to be) artistic with the CD cover, I would sell the finished product to my classmates and be paid 70 to 100 pesos (depending on the CD) for my service.

Back then, pirated CDs were selling for 50 pesos, cheaper than my CDs. Still, my classmates preferred my service because they could have personalized CDs with all their favorite songs. I was also determined enough to search for hard-to-find songs for my clients’ pleasure. Sometimes, all they would give me is a line from a song because they did not know the title; I would still find it. Also, my CDs didn’t scratch easily, allowing my classmates to enjoy them for a long time.

I would have a profit of 40 to 50 pesos for each CD. I would receive at least three orders every week. There were times when my profit was more than my allowance. Sweet! This business went on for almost two years until I got busy with my extracurricular activities and when computer shops around our school started offering similar service for a cheaper price.

What’s my point? Well, right now, I can say that I have a decent job. I am earning enough to pay my parents back for raising me well and save a little for myself. However, I still want more things in life. It’s not that I’m materialistic or something. I actually enjoy the simple life. However, I have dreams. It’s not wrong, is it? Since prostituting myself is not an option, I want to have my own business again while still keeping my day job, not now, but definitely in the future. I'll make sure that my business is legal though. :P

American businessman Hal Geneen once said, “In the business world, everyone is paid in two coins:  cash and experience. Take the experience first; the cash will come later.” I hope my little experience in college is enough for the moolah to come to me. :)


LeeLai said...

This business made the line: "Karlo pa-burn" popular.

Karlow said...

Yeah, I remember. Hehe