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Profile: Maxwell Arnold, Always thinking. Always writing. Top Writer ’18/’17/’16.

Humbled, proud, and appreciative to have been a Quora Top Writer for three consecutive years in 2016, 2017, and 2018. Quora is perhaps the best thing that has ever happened to me – and it is a very important part of my life. Welcome to my profile!

“So, Maxwell… what do you write about?”

Sigh. That is the question I hate the most. Not because I don’t like discussing the things I write about, or anything… but because the things I write about vary so much, and they have no discernible pattern to them. So it tends to confuse people when I tell them that I have a BA in fashion, but yet I seem to know more about things like credit cards than anything else. For example, my most-viewed answer is about the most prestigious credit cards on the market: Maxwell Arnold’s answer to What makes the American Express Black Card the world’s most exclusive credit card?

Here are some topics that I seem to be knowledgeable about, with corresponding insights into each…

Blockchain/Cryptocurrencies: This is relatively new to me, as I only got started in the field in November of 2017. I work as an analyst at an investment company that deals specifically in crypto and blockchain holdings. I’ve been exposed to a lot of things that give me a very good understanding of this space – both in concept, and in terms of what the future stands to hold for these technologies over the coming months and years.

Fashion: I became obsessively interested in fashion from around the time I was 15 or so. To me, it was more than “just clothes”. It’s what you put your body into. It’s what you live in. It’s how you present yourself to others. Most importantly, it’s the easiest thing to get right or wrong, for all kinds of reasons. After I decided when I was 19 that I didn’t want to be in real estate, I pursued a college program in fashion, which I articulated into a BA (Hons) in International Fashion Practice. I work outside of the field currently, but I do have academic/research interests in the field that I plan to pursue at a later time.

Real Estate: I got sucked into real estate when I was 12 years old, when my family was selling our house, and I was seduced by the idea of making a 5% commission on every sale (until I learned how it really worked, that is). I dropped out of high school when I was 16 out of a total disinterest in anything there was to learn there. A few months later, I started taking the pre-licensing courses, finishing the final exam at 17 – and I had to wait until I was 18 to get my license. I leased one condo, sold one condo, and worked on one complex commercial lease deal with Starbucks – until I ultimately realized how ridiculous the trade of real estate is. Manipulation, lies, negligence, flat-out stupidity, it just wasn’t a healthy place to be. I’m far, far away from that field now, but if I ever get around to owning property, I have considerable underlying knowledge of how it works as a formerly licensed real estate trader.

Gambling: Like many enterprising people, I’ve taken an interest in the mathematical theories of gambling – both as a matter of being familiar with risk, and as a matter of advantage play. Yes, I’ve been a card counter. Yes, I’ve made money at it. Yes, I’ve gotten caught. No, they didn’t take me into the back room. I’ve thoroughly explored many angles of advantage play, which means that I can tell you about all kinds of things to do with optimal strategy, the house edge, game vulnerabilities, and where the line is drawn between legal and illegal tactics. I’m pretty much done with advantage play, because it’s gotten to be much more difficult to not get caught (and it’s terribly stressful). However, I have been taking up poker lately (I finished in a three-way chop at the top of just my sixth poker tournament, of 50 players). I also have a prototype for a variation on the game of blackjack – it’s currently one of my plans to see about getting it patented and possibly licensed for casino play.

Dating/Relationships/Online dating: You know how the people who give the best advice on dating and relationships are always the people who have had horrible luck with it themselves? That’s me. I have a unique perspective on dating and relationships because it’s something I’ve approached and learned about from the perspective of being on the autistic spectrum. There are certain nuances that I didn’t instinctively get – but through trial and error, as well as lots of reading and observing, I’ve managed to obtain a functional understanding of protocols, concepts, and “the way things work” in this context. I’ve also used pretty well every online dating platform you can name – and two out of the three women for whom I’ve felt love-level feelings, I met online (one on POF, and the other – yes, seriously – on Craigslist).

An inordinate amount of my answers are to do with dating and relationships, mostly because there are so many questions that don’t have answers which have even a basic grasp of things like common courtesy, consent, or respect for other people. So even though I don’t bill myself as an expert on dating and relationships, it’s something I write about frequently… and people seem to like it.

Restaurants/Serving/Bartending: I spent quite some time in the food service industry from the ages of 19 to 25. I’ve also taken multiple bartending courses and gotten to be at least somewhat skilled at making cocktails. Much of my time spent working in restaurants was by choice (that is, I was qualified to do other things, but preferred to be in the restaurant industry). So all of this, I guess you could say I’m really passionate about. I’m writing a book now on the basics of becoming a server. That, too, I’m going to be looking to get in motion shortly.

Sales/Cold calling: This was my first full-time job after quitting high school. I worked for a call centre that other companies would hire to make outbound calls for them. For instance, a software company might give us a list of businesses to whom they want their new product pitched. We’d pitch them, forward any leads to them, and keep track of who wasn’t interested and why. In about a three-year timeframe, I did around 250,000 calls for over 100 different clients. This taught me a lot about the basics of sales, business relationships, and how to pitch effectively. So you will see some answers of mine about the sales process, how to make cold calls, or how to refine your pitch to be succinct, and to-the-point.