The markets are sloshing with red ink. Benumbed and indifferent, I shrug at whizzing bank headlines, what’s eight billion or ten, give or take a few? A great IPO fizzles out to nothingness and is withdrawn petulantly. Then, another, even the Burj builder has no takers, not at these levels. These are GOOD issues, not your fly by night z listers. I watch that kid of a day trader juggle non stop calls on his cell and blackberry, his face grimmer with every call; three years, I tell him, before it looks up again. Pity he’s never seen the way the markets were a decade ago, pity he’s never been burnt, but there’s a first time to everything, and you may as well lay back and enjoy it.
Yesterday all my silent cribbing about a train journey that took long disappeared in a whiff, when I talked to this young girl whose shift would begin at eleven in the night, selling credit cards to customers in far away lands, so as to support herself through college, a masters degree and hopefully a better life. The city does that, shuts you up and stops you short.
This is interesting for the rough edges and polishable instances, a Gatsby redux: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/10/books/review/Greenberg2-t.ht