Struggle, Beauty, Perhaps Art

Just so you don't have the wrong impression, it's not all fawns on the lawn here at Longleaf. We work at our desks five days a week from 7 AM CST until 3:30 PM CST. Like most folks, the "brain time" spent thinking about the work spills over into nights and weekends, too.

After selling businesses and retiring from corporate life more than ten years ago, Buck and I learned to supplement income and hang on to savings by investing in the stock market. Yes (gasp). The Market. It's what we do, during good times, bad times, near Armageddon times, and back-from-the-brink times. 

Some days it's fun. Some days it's hell. We joke about donning hard hats, combat boots and flak jackets before sitting down to work. Our computers are at opposite ends of a folding office supply house table. A table-top television sits between us, where it stays on CNBC business news all day and Bloomberg all night. I have developed a bad (bad, bad, very bad) habit of peeking at international and pre-market futures from my cell phone in the middle of the night.

Most writers have demanding non-writing jobs, or young children, or debilitating illness, or inhospitable partners, or an insidious voice inside their own heads that dishonors their efforts, or grinding poverty that denies them the most basic tools, or some other barrier.

There's an old expression: "It takes a lot of dirt to grow pretty roses." We are not children. We are not hot house flowers, writing lyric essays in a vacuum. We are in the world. We are of the world. And we are all really something.

6 thoughts on “Struggle, Beauty, Perhaps Art

  1. Gasp! I cannot think of more stressful jobs, and I’ve had a bunch of them. That would be all I need to finish me off–adding stock market nightmares to the reporter/news deadline, owning a restaurant, rejection, trying to use the telephone nightmares I currently use to keep myself entertained all night. Good grief. But, thanks for the peek into your lives. I’ll take the fawns any day.

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  2. Thank God that we can rise up from the dirt, examine its particles on our hands and then create something extraordinary that has no resemblance to that from which it came.

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  3. Stressful, but fun, and keeps you well informed of the events of the day as they have an immediate impact on the business, and your profit/loss is immediate with no boss to blame or take credit. I’ve learned that CNBC tho doesn’t help me much, just a bunch of blather to me but it’s useful for getting a take on the day ahead in the mornings. Speaking as a trader myself of course…

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