A Rocket In My Pocket

“I think I just fell in love,” I announced to my business colleague as we walked around a Ducati parked casually on sidewalk of downtown Melbourne. The bike was monster, it’s speedometer showing that it could go beyond 230 kilometers per hour. In Melbourne motorbikes are everywhere, strewn along the outer edges of its sidewalks often left completely unchained. For a bike enthusiast like me a day spent walking aimlessly around this beautiful city was a true treat as I gawked at the gleaming steel and fat rubber tires of some the most beautiful machines in this world.

I have never owned a bike and have ridden on one only once in my life but I pine for the motorcycle experience with the intensity of an unrequited lover. I adore the power, the speed, the overall beauty of the machine. Is there anything cooler than flying down some deserted road, wind at your back, every muscle in your body fully focused on the task at hand as the bike relentlessly swallows concrete?

Well maybe not.

As I was leaving Melbourne reality quickly jarred me out of my Walter Mittiesque fantasies of glamour and adventure on the road. Driving on the main highway towards the airport, you are confronted by an endless parade of billboards that proclaim, “Motorcyclists are 38 times more likely to suffer serious injury.” Not 38% but 38 times! That statistic stopped me cold in my tracks and suddenly riding a motorbike was no longer so appealing.

I had always known that bike riding was dangerous, but until that moment I had never realized just how fatal it could be. Having the odds so starkly spelled out suddenly made it much clearer to me that this was activity best pursued through the reverie rather than reality.

Seeing those signs pass me by every few meters or so, I thought wouldn’t it be great if we could have those warnings as traders? Imagine if you were about to do something stupid like double up for the fifth time in a row on a continuously losing position and warning popped announcing “This strategy has a 90% chance of blowing up your whole account.” Unfortunately trading comes without warning labels and we must learn all our lessons from the school of hard knocks. Fortunately an accident in trading will only wreck your money not your body – yet another good reason for why you should trade small until you master the rules of the game. Like the deadly combination of speed and concrete trading can be completely unforgiving, which is why we should learn to quickly abandon all the romantic fantasies turning $1000 into 1 Million and focus instead on reducing risk as much as possible.

Driving a simple four door sedan with you seat belt firmly strapped in place may not be nearly as exciting as flying down the road in a Ducati Diavel, but it is the right thing to do if you want to survive. Something we should all keep in mind when we sit in front of our FX screens ready to take on the market.

Boris Schlossberg

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