Dinosaur Trader is a stock trader. He writes about the daytrading lifestyle, parenthood, marriagehood and the often combustible mixture of the three. He likes dogs.
At 4:30am I remember thinking, “I shouldn’t trade today.”
I was wiping yellow baby poo from my pajama pants in the bathroom. My 6 year old was wide awake and standing next to me, fascinated by the consistency and color of her new sister’s shit.
At 5:30am, we were all still awake. I hate laying around in bed if I can’t sleep. My mind starts to spin and I usually end up getting paranoid or indignant about something or other… tainted meat, corrupt local government officials, whatever. So I decided to slip out of bed and walk the 10 steps to my “office” to take a peek at copper and silver. Both were flattish. I felt confident I wouldn’t trade.
Of course, now that I was no longer worried about trading tired, I was able to fall asleep.
Anyway, the next time I shuffled into the office was a couple of minutes after the big S&P news. The futures fell, silver spiked, and I knew I’d better brew a big pot of coffee and get to trading.
I’m not really a trend trader. Of course, I don’t mind being on the same side as a trend, it’s just rarely the case. I tend to operate better at inflection points. So when copper started down, again, (today was its sixth straight down day), I was looking to buy. I was particularly interested in the $4.21 area because it not only represented a trendline touch, but it had acted as both support and resistance in the last few months.
It traded hard through S1 and $4.21 but then began to put in a base with a low of $4.2060. The base tightened up under S1 and I decided to take a stab at the long. It was a good warmup, I caught an early 1.5 point move and considered ending the day right there.
But of course, I didn’t. I had to lose that money I had just made by messing around with ES. I’ve been having a real hard time with ES lately. Like, just getting stopped out before it rips higher. Today was no different. My last ES sale of the day was at 11:04, seconds away from the bottom.
But maybe that was a good thing, because it freed me up to look at HG again, which was tanking on volume. After losing a half point here and a quarter point there, I settled on a good position at around $4.1755. I had a few contracts and told myself to just leave them alone. Set a stop, walk away.
But of course, I didn’t. I sold a couple just under S2. The memory of the other day when I got those awful stop outs was still in my head. I left the rest at a new low.
An hour into the position, Judy informed me that I had to drive my daughter over to a friend’s house for a playdate. It was a sunny day, warmish, and I was happy to get away from the computers. I asked her to just peek in on my HG position now and then.
When I got to my friend’s house, I was offered a glass of wine. “Heck,” I thought, “one glass of wine won’t hurt. Anyway, I have a stop in.”
These friends have a pristine backyard. Beautiful teak furniture, perfect grass, specimen trees. The sun was hitting me just right. Spring! A flock of Grackles frolicked between two trees. My friend and I were relaxed. We were talking, laughing. Throwing a ball to his dog.
“Beautiful dog,” I thought.
My daughter fed me a playdough cookie. I drank some “disgusto” when it was offered. I had wooden piece of pizza. “Are all the ingredients organic and locally sourced?” I asked the girls. They laughed. I laughed. Everyone was so happy.
My friend had a call to make. He had to step inside. The girls followed him in to play with some dolls. I was alone for a second.
The dog jumped up on the table and stole a big wad of playdough. He ran for the trees. I tackled the dog and fished the playdough out of his drool-filled mouth. I looked hard into the dog’s eyes. We looked into each other’s eyes like that, for what seemed like minutes. “No!” I said. But the dog’s eyes were saying, “Yes!”
I offered the dog my leg. It humped me.
I heard the sound of gravel crunching under tires. I pushed the dog off my leg and peeked over a hedge towards the driveway. My friend’s wife was home. She entered the backyard and poured herself a glass of wine. “What’s on your pants?” she asked. “Nothing,” I said. “Maybe some dog semen.” We laughed. Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha!
She refilled my wine glass. The girls came back outside. They began to scream. A dead snake lay at the bottom of their pool. My phone rang. It was Judy. My new kid was screaming in the background.
My peaceful bubble was bursting.
“HG is looking good. You better get home and manage this. I’m too busy to do it for you.”
HG? Copper? Man, I had completely lost track of time. Maybe it was the sleep deprivation. Maybe the wine. Maybe the dog…
It was difficult for me to leave the backyard. It’s so hard to trade the first few nice days of spring.
In a few minutes I was home. I immediately closed out the position just over the magic $4.21 level.
Then I took a nice nap.
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