1. You run a pattern to give you sustenance for a position and you nod approvingly when you see that it gives bullish forecasts. But then you realize you were looking at bonds as the dependent variable rather than stocks, and the actual forecast is disastrous to you.

2. You have a spread on and after giving up the bid asked and the commission, taking into consideration your expected profit, you're giving up more than 100% vig. But then to reduce the certainty of a loss you leg out. And you leg out of the one that was ready to go through the roof in your favor, and the leg you're stuck with plummets to terrible levels ( happened to me today).

When your friends hear that you're a speculator, they say "how can you sleep at night".

The watched pot never boils. So you step away from the market for one minute, and during that time, the one chance that you had to get in for a profit is dissipated.

5. Anyone who meets you over 50 will greet you with "you know, edspec and reminiscences of a stock speculator are my favorite two books of yours". (Is the Sherry Netherlands lounge still open?).

6. The most frequently asked question you'll be asked is "how can the fibonacci systems be so accurate?"

A bank trader will receive a bonus of 10% of his profits on a 1 billion position, and complain that he's getting less than he would if he worked for a hedge fund.

8. Your alma mater will pay its investment team 200 million in bonuses, 10 million each while they lost money in the year on the grounds that they beat their bogey.

9. When the market goes up, more than 100 dow points, all your friends will say to you "the market was way up today. You must have made a fortune" not knowing that you were short.

10. You hold onto a position while it goes violently against you and finally give up at the worst point, at which time it turns around and goes through the roof in what would have been your favor.

11. You make small gain after small gain– over a day, a week– and your confidence and well-being grow. Then it's all wiped by one big loss. 

Easan Katir adds: 

1. One could not find a more appropriate song to listen to than this while waiting for theta to decay.

2. You are called a nerd when you price an option using the Black-Scholes model going through the formula by hand.

3. No one in your family appreciates the genius of RPN.

4. It looks like a done deal so you go long double S&P, which tanks after hours.

5. You read "among the plays which men perform in taking different parts in this magnificent world theatre, the greatest comedy is played at the Exchange. There in inimitable fashion the speculators excel in tricks, they do business and find excuses wherein hiding places, concealment of facts, quarrels, provocations, mockery, idle talk, violent desires, collusions, artful deceptions, betrayals, cheating, and even the tragic end, are to be found" written by de la Vega in 1688, you and realize nothing has changed in four hundred years. 


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