During the many years that I’ve been running Slope, readers from all corners of the earth have shipped me gifts, such as chocolates, wine, little statues, and so on. I find it very touching anyone would take the time or trouble, but Scott (Iguanodon) created for me a couple of real gems. First, there’s this puzzle:
On Tuesday, I wrote this post, which declared that the ES uptrend was broken. Now I want to say two things very clearly at the outset. First off, the last couple of months have been very hard on me, and earlier this week in particular was devastatingly hard from an emotional standpoint (Northy and I were holding onto each other for dear life at times). So I confess I was reaching a bit to look for any “good news” for the bears, which was a motivation behind the post (although I absolutely was sincere about the trendline break).
Second, the comments I’m going to share below are in no way meant to disrespect or “call out” the folks replying, because they were said respectfully (and God knows I’ve been wrong more often than right in my lifetime). At the time, they did sting a bit, because – – let’s face it – – charting is my life, and if my interpretation of trendlines isn’t valid (or if trendlines themselves are pointless), well, I might as well go work in Home Depot.
Trading is a uniquely rewarding experience; you get to match wits with everyone else as you try to amass wealth. There is no trying, there is no second place, and excuses don’t pay the bills. So whenever you can become part of a community that equally shares your passions, goals, and ambitions, you embrace it. Slope is such a place. But before anyone gets confused that this is some mushy feel good post, let me disabuse you of that notion.
You need a community like Slope. Here is why.
I get emails all the time from folks asking me to promote their site or their business. I always feel sort of used when I get these, since the person doesn’t have any relationship with me and just wants some free publicity.
I received an email recently, though, from a long-time reader which struck a chord with me. He wasn’t asking for promotion – – – he was just seeking maybe an idea or two about marketing. But I felt what he was doing was so sincere, I wanted to share it with you here. Here’s the email in its entirety, although I’ve boldfaced some particular bits:
Let me first say a big thank you. I became aware of Slope during the 08/09 crisis and have followed it ever since. I don’t post often but I read the articles every day.
I’ve been online, in one way or another, since about 1982 when I got my first 300 baud Lynx modem. During the many years since, I have acquired what I think is a pretty strong sense as to the rhythm, timbre, and pulse of a given online community. In many ways I’m more comfortable with an online group than with a live group of people.
If I chose to do so, I could spend a lot more time in Slope’s own comments section. I could make a lot of comments on my own, try to guide the conversation, gently scold people whose behavior seemed to be getting a bit out of line, and so forth. I do not spend much time in comments, however, for many reasons. Broadly stated, I’m really busy, and let’s face it, with Slope in its 12th year, I would hope that the community could, by and large, manage itself.
Today is Slope of Hope‘s 11th birthday. Before I say any more, I’d like you to listen to this Patton Oswalt routine, which is a favorite of mine:
So my attitude about Slope’s latest anniversary is captured nicely by Patton. One year ago today, I made a very big deal about Slope’s first decade. This year – meh – not so much, particularly on a dreadful day for the bears like today.
I’m grateful you are here, to be sure, I’m certainly going to keep on keeping on, but we’ll have to wait until March 29 2018 (if I make it that long) to make a big stink about it again. In any case, thanks for being a Sloper. I truly, deeply appreciate your presence all these years.
Over the nearly eleven years that I’ve been running Slope, I have received thousands of emails from people around the world. These emails have, on the whole, only deepened my belief that people are fundamentally good, and they have exhibited the kinds of traits – – – honesty, generosity of spirit, and camaraderie – – that make it a pleasure to be a part of this community.
Occasionally I get an email which is so special that I want to share it with other Slopers, and of course I always ask permission of the sender if I may do so. They always say yes, and this is no exception. Here, then, is an email I received this morning. He said it would be all right to mention his screen name, but out of an abundance of respect for privacy, I’ll refrain from doing so: (more…)