In the summer of 2011 I started out on a quest to buy a laptop. While a laptop is a staple object that many people take for granted, I for one did not and it meant more than anything to me for the year that followed, and thus at 16 I started my journey to online money making. I was stuck with an old computer from the Y2K era and it prevented me from doing many things such as playing video games or simply browsing the World Wide Web. Also prior to the beginning of my journey it had died at least 10 times due to catching viruses, but each time it was restored by my cousin who is an IT. But there's only so much that you can do for a computer that has been here since the birth of Christ, and eventually my cousin gave me an ultimatum. He said that it would be his last time fixing it and that I needed to take care of my computer. And I did, I practiced computer safety I became more aware of what I was browsing and I cleaned my computer religiously, it became my child. But no matter what I would do, I knew that it would eventually fail on me again and I would be left with nothing.

The main reason I was getting a laptop was to take my privacy back. Although my computer was not the most desirable, it was functioning and I respected it because it had been my escape from myself and from my surroundings when I needed it to be. But that was taken from me when it was removed from my room and thus I was forced to interact with the people who made my life a living hell. Over the next six months I had spent countless hours looking for the ultimate method to make money, but the one thing all my endeavors had in common was failure. I had spoken with countless successful people on what they were doing and yet I couldn't acquire a mere $300-400 for a laptop. During that time period I did however make small increments that I spent on little things, and while 2 dollars a week (and not every week) wasn't enough, it was more than some people saw in a month (in medieval times of course). Now at this point one might ask "Why not get a job?" or "Why not ask your parents?". You see, prior to my whole quest and during the course of a year I did look for work off and on, but my age and lack of experience was often an issue for many employers. Also if I asked my parents I would have no rights whatsoever to my laptop, and so it had to be something that I was my decision. Establishing some form of independence even if very little, was very important to me. And so I trenched on most of the time feeling discouraged but I never quit.

In June of 2012 a fellow online money maker whom I had befriended months before approached me with an interesting opportunity. I had never heard of it before and at first was skeptical. After reading up more on this profession I decided to give it try like anything else that had come before. And within 3 hours on my first night I made a whopping one hundred and fifty dollars which I split with my "partner" so to speak. I figured it would be a few more days if not a week at max until I was able to order my laptop. That however was not the case, I came to learn that this profession required a bit of luck, and you could make as much as $500 in a week and $40 in 2 weeks but of course I hadn't seen those big numbers. And I became discouraged when I wasn't able create any profit and spent whatever I had earned on little things like skin products or supplements. Now naturally one would assume "What's a 17 year old doing to make this kind of money if not mowing a lawn?". Now I was going to get my laptop at all cost, however not at the misfortunes of others and I made it a point to stay on the legal side of things.

This profession required me to take on the role of someone who was young, desirable, cunning and most of all the perfect companion. In addition to this I had to sell a product. Being a fairly reserved individual I possessed next to none of these qualities, but I learned and this became my summer. Just like any other profession there are highs and lows, one low being that I was ripped off by my "partner/friend" two-hundred and fifty dollars' worth. It set back my progress by a lot and at the time I was very upset but now it's just another experience and lesson that the universe has equipped me with for the real world. It was towards the end of the summer when I came into contact with a client that would change my life. He was an ordinary guy who owned a bar in floral park just looking for someone to talk to; he wanted to feel like he wasn't wasting his life and like he had a purpose. For lack of a better word he was suicidal. Now, most people my age go through a phase in which they feel alone and unworthy of human decency and at times one of the most important decision a teenager can make is to not kill themselves. So I've dealt with people who have considered suicide as their only option. And after convincing this man that this is only one chapter of his life and that regardless of what he did or what was done to him, in 10 years he could be living a life that he never thought was ever possible. I could sense that he didn't believe me entirely, but he thanked me for being so kind and giving him even a little bit of hope because it was what he needed. He rewarded my kindness with a generous amount of money four-hundred dollars to be exact.

I was finally able to order my laptop and the ironic thing about this is that on this very day it had been a year and one day since I had started my journey. The following week I had greeted the mail man with a hug and thanked him like I had just won the lottery. Prior to getting my laptop I had promised myself that any profit I would make afterwards would be saved and go towards my future because this has been so far one of the most tortuous processes I've put myself through and I don't regret it because I've had the opportunity to learn so much about the different kinds of people out there and myself. And so here I am three weeks typing on my glossy screen 15'6 inch laptop and with earnings totaling up to $586 dollars last week every penny was deposited into my bank account. I'm not someone who has experienced a lot of parties or things that other people my age would deem cool, however I've had the opportunity to work with a variety of people from bankers in Midtown Manhattan to aspiring artists living in studio apartments. This experience will always be a part of my adolescence and I am grateful for it. I've learned to be resourceful and work with what I have, and at times an old computer is what I've always had.