June 18th, 2002

Enterprise Bridge

(no subject)

A couple of years ago, the San Diego Union-Tribune ran a series of articles about two local kids who grew up together playing baseball. They were both drafted out of high school, one elected to sign and turn pro, the other passed and went to Stanford. At the time of the article, Eric Munson had finished his junior year and had been drafted again, and Eric Chavez was getting his first shot at breaking in with the A's.

While the series was a pretty neat contrast of life in the minors versus life on campus, one thing that stuck with me was how very little money minor league ballplayers make. The league minimums can pay them $750 a month. That'll work in most of the bum-fuck Egypt towns that most of those teams call home. But how the hell can someone afford to live on their own on that little income someplace like Schaumburg? How could minor league teams exist (much less five of them) exist in such economically inhospitable places as the Chicago suburbs?

Today's Chicago Tribune explained how: The teams seek out and set their players up with local host families, similar to how foreign exchange students are placed.

Clearance sales are way cool. I wound up in Radio Scam with Kumar, 'cause he needed to look into things like RF modulators and color correctors for hooking up his DVD player. They had $25 burglar alarm code keypads marked down to $2-$4 apiece. These are items in the category of "I can't think of a use for them today, but I likely will later, and they won't be this cheap then." I cleared the shelf of them.

Listening to my mom and sister bitch about their jobs, I'm reminded of why I left Qualcomm. So I wonder how much of what Jamie Zawinski wrote about Netscape applies to Qualcomm, and at what rate it increases. While Qualcomm hasn't been bought out and sucked dry by a much larger company, Jamie's comments about the creativity and accomplishments of small groups versus large organizations ring a familiar note.