I spent the summer of 2013 back home in St. Petersburg. I stayed at the one-time apartment of the political collaborator of Vladimir Lenin and the founder of socialist realism - Maksim Gorky. Gorky was a prolific writer and thinker, friends with Chekhov and Lev Tolstoy. Because of his political views, he fled the Empire and ended up in North America in the early 20th century. On the day of my 30th birthday that summer, I took a flight to Los Angeles International for the first time.
I roamed between Moscow, San Francisco, Tel Aviv, Barcelona, Berlin, and the French coast for over a year, alone and with my then family. The Fund was pretty much “done” by then, as the political situation distracted both existing and potential LPs. Still, the firm’s Managing partner attempted to raise funds, and I maintained my own busyness. I made a few successful exits and a couple of last entrepreneurial attempts. Came up with the idea of “Uber for soft smuggling” products and consumer goods using frequent flyers. Similar to how I used a car-hailing app to get a package from a restaurant or a local merchant. I wanted an app to find an airline passenger who would bring me something I desired but from overseas. Technically untraceable, I even found a way to make it legal-ish… But those VCs! Nobody wants to invest in projects that come with any legal risks.
← Tel Aviv
linked mentions for "Gorky’s Apartment":
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overly personal autobio piece of six thousand words and no picture, this introspective project took years to complete, yet like a mythical journey, it's unfinished