As a durian fanatic, I recently discovered a cult of durian lovers online. Lindsay and Richard travel around Asia, curating different types of durian. You can order yourself a box of five different types of large Thai durian samples to try. A couple new friends I made at my partner’s company get-together introduced us to this well put-together way of sampling different types of durian. They also introduced us to “tea guy” Eric who travels to the farthest corners and remotest places to discover different types of tea.
So my partner and I have recently slowly expanded our knowledge and senses to a variety of teas and durians. It’s been fun to learn some things new together. And we’ve successfully worked a moment of tea and a small durian dessert platter into our daily routines.
As I am in the midst of a career change, this has made me think about how my personal monopoly, the several things that get me personally excited, is worth pursuing in terms of personal value and niche capital. No one else out there thinks about durian the way Lindsay and Richard do at the crossroads of durian, travel, and Asian culture. And no one else out there thinks about tea the way Eric does. Building a digital community around the niche things that you’re learning is the rising economy as content creators, as community builders, as citizens of the Internet tap into remote work and digital audiences.
Putting your unique interests and work online invites serendipity into your little corner of the Internet with those who are looking for company in the discovery together. That network and your personal monopoly is so valuable. Tap into that.