They Thought Killing Us Would Be Easy

elijah-mug-shotDo you see this face?  This is the face of a man who will not go quietly.  This is the face of a man who will not give up on his dreams of financial freedom and mini retirements; all because the system refuses to cooperate.  Technology tried to crush our focus.  The corporations tried to give us the runaround.

They tried to kill TheAtHomeCouple.

They tried to kill Elijah and Veronica.

They tried to kill us and they failed.

For those of you who’ve been wondering if we’re doing ok, here is a brief, but graphic summary of the last 8 weeks:

The light bulb in my desk lamp blew out.  At first it didn’t seem like a big deal, but later I would realize that it was a symbolic gesture foreshadowing the mind-numbing course of events to follow.  A few days after that our Internet stopped working.  It had been 3 years, with the same service provider, without a bump.

No internet equals no money.  Funny how the guru’s never mention that one.  Note to self.

With the obvious sense of impending urgency, we decided to give them 2 weeks to fix it.  3 technicians and 2 weeks later the problem was still occurring, so we made the executive decision to cancel services (broadband cable internet and digital cable television) and call up our voip provider and get some DSL web service bundled-up and running.

If it were only that simple.  There is no “option” in “monopoly”.

6 weeks, 40 phone calls and 7 support tickets later, we have no high speed internet, our credit cards are maxed out and we’re 2 months behind on all of our utility bills with $20 in the bank.  There is no bail out for ambitious home business owners.  Help was not on its way.  We were 1 click away from checking out the cubicle-job market on Craigslist.

Apparently hitting rock bottom is required and we were fulfilling our obligation.

Today is Wednesday, and today we have high speed.  We’ve come full circle to our original service provider, but discovered along the way that they have business internet and phone solutions that offer a more robust support package, with a considerable increase in service speed and features.  Where was this 6 weeks and $3000 ago?

Please listen to what I’m about to tell you…

If you have or are planning to quit your job and work online full time – make sure you have a solid,  back up resource for high speed internet.  Whether it’s your grandmothers place, a Starbucks downtown or a 4G usb internet stick – know exactly where you are going and what you will do if you suddenly have no internet access.

I realize that in this day and age we completely abuse and take advantage of our dependency on technology.  Money spends the majority of our lives in a virtual state.  Our banking, businesses and social black books rely on technology.

If you’re chasing this money making dream – please take at least 30 minutes to think about what I’ve just shared with you.  Yes, we can all make money online.  Yes, we can quit our jobs and cash Adsense checks once a month.  Yes, we can visit each others blogs and make little jokes about things we’ll do when we’re “at the top”.

But what will you do if all these great things were coming into fruition and your internet connection fails?  Simple, yet deadly.



23 thoughts on “They Thought Killing Us Would Be Easy”

  1. Dude-

    Good to hear from you! My feedreader was getting quiet on that side of the screen… and I can COMPLETELY relate!

    8 months ago – we ended a 12 year relationship with our high speed provider (and lost our original oh-so-entrenched email addresses) because the service was sucking a$$. We switched to a DSL line… after having both in place for 3-months to make sure we liked it.

    Long story short – the DSL ended up being “out of service” for 2-3 hours every day one week, so we signed back up for the cable provider… and we keep both active at all times. Yup – its $150/month to keep two active business class broadband providers, but its a backup plan!

    On the days it was out – I rigged up a pringles can wifi antenna (Google it – works like a charm) to bridge my router to theirs and scraped from neighbors who don’t protect their connections. – 🙂 Shame on them…

    Good to hear its all working out though Eli…

    .-= Mark – Niche Store Builder´s last blog ..Is It Just Me – Or is ePN Now Boring? =-.

  2. @Mark – dude, you don’t know how comforting it is to hear that you know exactly what we went through. For a moment there I thought I was loosing my mind. When the money is coming in, paying for 2 internet connections is a brilliant idea. The lesson learned was definitely one that is life or death in our business.

  3. Hey Brother,

    Damnnnnnnn! Is all I gotta say. You look like you been through a few rounds with the italian stallion. I was glad to hear from you in my rss reader too, but sorry to hear that things have been tough for you guys once again.

    The project I emailed you about has pushed on since I contacted you, but I know you guys need a helping hand, so will track you down on skype and see if I can send some quick work your way.

    Keep your head up,

    .-= Nota Bene Consulting´s last blog ..Canonical Url Protocol =-.

  4. Hey, good to see you back – after the last post it was worrying and things dont seem to have improved any 🙁

    Glad it is sorted out now and hopefully you will get back on track really quickly. Lightbulbs are always blowing in my house….you’ve just explained why I have had such a crappy few years 😉

    Once you get back up to speed (literally) let me know and I will do a little piece on my blog about your sites etc – every little helps – Ali
    .-= Alison Wood´s last blog ..Affiliate Marketer? Get the Lowdown on the New FCT Rules =-.

  5. Hi E,

    Welcome back to the intertubes! My backup plan is my iPhone… I jailbroke that mofo so I can tether anywhere… it’s pretty sweet, I’ve simultaneously tethered 2 laptops and made a phone call all at the same time with my iphone.


  6. Hey Elijah

    Nice to see you back on the blog..Cheer up, You’ve seen what the bottom is like the past 6-10 weeks..Now it’s time to soar high again..And this time you are going to stay up!!

    As for the backup, well, in some cases, living outside the Western world can be advantageous..There are at least three internet cafes within 100 feet of my home, and they are not quite cheap here..My uncle’s in the same city too..
    .-= Anand Srinivasan´s last blog ..Online Coupons Usage Among US Internet Users By Income =-.

  7. The church of 50/50, my friend. 50% of life sucks. The other 50% is gleeful bliss.
    When you’re down remember that the other 50% is coming ’round the corner.
    Do you have a plan for scraping out of the debt from the last couple of months? You’ve gotta have a PLAN. If you want it bad enough you will get it, but you need to have a clear vision of how you’re gonna get there. Like, a step by step kind of list.
    Keep us posted. You can do it.
    .-= Laura-Jane´s last blog ..Happy Thanksgiving from Whimfield =-.

  8. New to the site. Wow, lesson learned from your internet problems! My girlfriend and I are going into business together (more on that in a moment) and I was thinking of “consolidating” internet access to a single point. After reading your story, I am going to keep my separate internet access. I actually have two and so does she. The second for both of us is a Crackberry, with both having service provided by different providers. Our main access to the ‘net is also served by two different providers. I think, now, we will just keep it that way! She has an est. accounting/bookkeeping/tax business (over 5 years old) and she is going to be hiring me on full-time shortly. I will be the marketing/sales arm. Looking for any advice on couples working together in a home-based business. What are the main highs/lows etc. Thanks all and good luck! Jason

  9. @Neal – Sounds good man! We’re definitely aiming to be caught up with outstanding projects by mid next week, hitting it full steam for the last 2 weeks of this month. You know our list of expertise is insanely diverse.. link building, seo, content, social, development, branding… we’ve got you covered.

    @Alison – That’s very sweet of you. I just read your comment and mentioned to Veronica (who’s punching away on some articles) that we have the best community on our blog. You know to contact us any time if you need a shoulder or head to bounce shit off of.

    @Ian – This does not surprise me. You’re a fiend who embraces his romantic wanderings with technology. I too am a fiend.. with way too many hard drives! Sounds like a sweet set up, and really versatile.

    @Anand – That’s pretty damned convenient! Connections in Toronto are very secure.. people are really tech-savvy here. I was planning to learn how to hack wifi – I’ve heard it only takes about 3 hours to get enough packets from a wifi connection to extract a WPA encrypted pass key.

    @Laura – Words of experience. Much appreciated. We’ve already hit the white board with our outstanding stuff, tonight we’ll be looking at the numbers to get an exact position of where we are, where we want to be and how we’re going to achieve that. This is probably going to be one of the most important maps we lay out in our lives. If we fuck up from here it’s back to the cubicle.

    @Jason – Thanks for stopping by brother. The only advice I can give is to give yourself adequate space for individual time. It won’t take long for you to feel cooped up, so allow yourselves to miss each other by being social outside of your work and love life. Good luck!
    .-= Elijah´s last blog ..They Thought Killing Us Would Be Easy =-.

  10. Great to see you back. I’d been checking on your blog from time to time and just figured you two were knee-deep in busy.

    Sorry about what happened. I’ve had to go months without an internet connection at home. This was when I was heavily into freelance writing so deadlines had to be met. Because I live in the city, I was fortunate enough to have a choice of cafes (particularly a 24 hr one which was seedy and infected my memory stick on the regular but was a godsend as I really needed a 24 hr place to fit in with my day job at the time).

    I also have a brother-in-law who’s a pc engineer and has as many computers as I have plates, but for some reason, I didn’t call on him that much as I felt he and my sister wouldn’t understand the whole ‘making-money-online’ thing. I wasn’t in the mood to explain things to them neither was I in the mood for any criticism they might have thrown my way.

    I don’t know how I got through it, it was exhausting, but I got through it. And it seems like you have too. As utterly frustrating as the experience appears to have been for you, you sound stronger for it.

    Great to have you back. All the best to the two of you in the coming months.

  11. Yes its true that making money online was really easy and you don’t have to get an office work and get scolded by your boss if make a very little mistakes.

  12. Ebele – It really does put me at ease knowing that we aren’t the only ones. And you’re right, I feel stronger.. a bit out of focus, but definitely stronger.

    P.S. Getting paid to fart is something I’ve been trying to accomplish since I was 7….
    .-= Elijah´s last blog ..They Thought Killing Us Would Be Easy =-.

  13. Duuuude, so not good! I’ve been wondering what you two were up to since you’ve not posted or Skyped in a while, but I figured you were just really busy with your biz!

    I’ve actually been thinking about a backup plan as well. I’m not doing well enough to work from home full time, but I’m looking to that in the future. Our internet, however, is shot. Sometimes it goes out for several hours a week, a few weeks ago it went out for a day and a half, and it usually goes out anytime our house gets exceptionally hot and humid (it went out for an hour when I was boiling chicken bones for stock, and sometimes goes out if we take too long of a hot shower). We tried to get DSL, but the local phone company doesn’t service our area (with DSL), and Comcast has a cable monopoly in our area. I’ve thought about getting free or cheap dial up for emergencies, but, since I don’t do this full time, it wasn’t worth the hassle.

    Luckily for short term emergencies I have a McDonald’s with WiFi in walking distance, and about 3 cafe’s with free wifi in nearby driving distance.

    I’ve wondered how much their business connection is. I’m hoping that we’ll move before or soon after I’d have to make that switch- somewhere with better wiring- but in a pinch, I’ll have to shovel out more money to the evil Comcast Overlords (oh how I hate them).
    .-= WordVixen´s last blog ..Monster Energy Drink Sucks The Life Out of Small Businesses =-.

  14. @WV – Yeah, maybe my spam police flagged your comment because you mentioned Comcast – and they secretly own the world?!? It seems that it’s not uncommon for people to just accept shitty internet… merely because they have very little choice… comcast for you is like rogers for us… it’s a monopoly and there is nothing we can do about it – unless we start an online petition? start up idea…. note to self.

    @WebCareerGirl – Backup broadband is ideal.. or if the market somehow opens up, I’ll by my own box at the mainframe hub downtown… lol, probably not. Thanks for the mention and link love, I’m thinking of a way to repay you.. hmm. how about 20 questions with web career girl?!?

  15. @everyone – Thanks so much for all your support! The past couple months have been extremely stressful but things are slowly starting to look up. It was unfortunate, but it happened and there’s nothing we can do but learn from it. I’m just excited to be back online … oh how I’ve missed it!

  16. Hey, Elijah:

    Sorry to hear of your doom dude. The internets can be sooooo bad to us at times, can’t they. Sometimes my laptop decides to take a half hour break for the hell of it and i’m like “wth? now. really? now you decide to go bonkers on me!!!”

    My internets on cable, but because i’m in a small town, usually the techy dudes arrive shortly after I call – when something goes wacky. Thank god!!!

    Yep, we web workers need the internets like we need air to breather.


    P.S. Glad to hear you got it back and all is right with the world.
    .-= Missy´s last blog ..Top 10 Kindle Covers And Cases =-.

  17. Wow, this is an old post but right now, Jan.1 2011, there4’s buzz of the internet neutrality crap going on and I can just imagine what it would do to us IM’ers, who depend on internet day in and day out. Yeah, I’ve had my internet down a few times and I had to pack it up and go tot he coffee shop. Working at home with 2 little girls and my wife, is distracting enough, but going to a coffee shop to try to concentrate on work and get something done, can be a nightmare. The internet stick is a thought, but I wonder if they work in 3rd world countries and if netflix will still deliver? I love my netflix on demand streaming movies. what would I do without it?

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