I’ll tell you what’s not up - the markets. I’ve consciously watched market blood baths a couple of times in my life. 2001. 2008. 2019 is looking like a serious contender. The Bears seem to have woken up from a slumber. A recession is coming, say Pundits. Yield curves are going belly up. Trump, meanwhile, continues to do whatever he feels like - for instance, poking China like a lunatic would poke a giant Bear.
On our side of the pond, the government-media complex is in full swing. Did you see Modi get wild with Bear Grylls? The bears seem to be stacking up. But that man is something - Modi, I mean. One minute he is a social media influencer, the next a dictator who cuts of a section of population from all communication. The rate at which jobs are disappearing, maybe we all need to become social media influencers.
There are other things to be scared about. It’s getting hot down here on Earth. The sad thing is that the governments don’t seem to give a shit. Facts are kinda iffy these days, subject to feelings. If you feel a little cold, then surely there’s no global warming.
Also, while we are in the subject of large global things being fucked, I think peak capitalism is slowly morphing from sunshine-in-tropical-beach screensaver they were showing us into the dark-Gothic-house-with-rotting-zombies version of reality. Corporations are mostly shit. Sure, they give jobs and have moved large populations out of poverty but in the here and now, their downsides are stacking up more than their upside. Their cost to environment, health, human rights and even plain empathy is now too high. Does that mean I am now one of those new-age socialists? Probably not - I am too vested in the capitalistic structure.
What does all this got to do with me?
Actually, nothing. And everything. For all of us. This is a strange time where we live in a cozy bubble of small things while these major issues rage around us. For instance, the things that keep me occupied these days are:
Work - building products at Amazon India
Writing - a little bit, something daily
Reading - Currently, The Outsider (Stephen King)
Learning to invest in the markets - what a horrible time to try?
Getting deeper in learning about photography and researching the next camera so I can sink in more of hard earned money
Wistfully mulling about the next vacation
Actively increasing my social obligations
Watching Netflix and trying to cut down desperately
Running, moving and being flexible as I realize that my 35-year old body now needs work and doesn’t just bootstrap after a night of sleep
If all the above sound familiar to you, that’s the strangeness of our times. The things-I-care-about are small (if we are privileged enough) while gargantuan issues rage around us. But, the one ridiculous phrase I’ve heard again and again and could pretty much describe our times. It’s a stupid phrase I keep saying to myself when things are not so rosy.
Could be worse.
So, as I talk about both fun and scary things I mentioned above, I thought it would be a good reminder as you read to think of the above phrase. I’ll try and stay irreverent and not take myself too seriously.
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These are fun times,
In the meantime, tell your friends!