How Nevermind By Nirvana Cost Me Thousands

Kurt Cobain: Not a stock trader...

After yesterday’s rally I wanted to buy shit. I loved the action in $OIH coupled with the complete death and then resurrection of the commodities. The market looked like it was ready to breathe again.

But this morning at 7:30 when I flipped on my computer the futures were trading up near $1180, 20 points higher than yesterday’s close. I couldn’t buy them up here. I’d either have to wait for an extension to short or a pullback to buy.

At around 9:55 I threw on a quick short and scalped a point from $ES_F. I had no enthusiasm for trading and I walked downstairs to make some tea. While downstairs, the market spiked to $1185.75 and I missed a far better entry and trade. Now I really had nothing to do. I tweeted that I’d look to short again up near R2, at $1188.25 and then I started surfing around the internet.

Turned out that R2 was less than 2 pts from the top today.

Pitchfork isn’t what it used to be. For years I’d go there and get solid record reviews about interesting bands but I guess they wanted to broaden their appeal and started reviewing shit by Rihanna. Anyway, the lead review today was of the 20th anniversary reissue of the Nirvana album, “Nevermind.

I read half the review before I went to my basement to dig out the CD. The review was dry and written with some odd detachment that just didn’t make sense to me. My guess is that the author wasn’t a teenager when “Nevermind” was released. I’m 37. I haven’t listened to this album back to back in maybe 15 years, but I’m not quite ready or able to hold it up between my fingers and study it like some caught moth. I started feeling sentimental.

I thought back to the day I bought it.

My friend Pat was the first to get his license and a car. He had this Oldsmobile that his mom gave him. There was nothing cool about the car. It had fuzzy cloth seats and one of those hangy cloth ceilings. I believe the interior was maroon. We drove it everywhere listening to all kinds of weird music. This was before “Alternative” music was widely distributed and before “Indie” was even a term.

We’d go to the Tower Records in Carle Place. They had a tiny section, like, 5 or 6 rows of “Alternative” music. We bought stuff based on the cover art. There was no telling what the music sounded like because it wasn’t played on the radio. We discovered Primus and the Meat Puppets in this manner.

DaVinci to a 17 year old boy.

But on the day I bought “Nevermind” we drove to “Uncle Phils” off of Sunrise Highway in Massapequa. We bought the CD and had it playing as we head east towards the Sunrise Mall. As we rolled up to a light, we caught up to a man who was riding a bike. I looked out the passenger window at the man and he looked at me. Just as our eyes met the guy completely wipes the fuck out.

Pat and I began dying with laughter. The light changed and we kept on driving, probably just as “Breed” would have kicked on. Problem is, we’re having such a terrific time laughing at the biker’s misfortune that we don’t notice we’re about to drive up onto a traffic island that separates a turning lane from the rest of the highway.

Suddenly, we found ourselves on the island driving 40mph. We blast a road sign (THWAK!) and Pat quickly jerks the wheel so that we (BA-DUMP… BA DUMP) get off of the island and back onto the highway. I can’t forget the look we exchanged at that moment. A mixture of glee and horror.

We pull into the mall laughing. “Nevermind” has been blasting this entire time. I buy a new pair of Doc Martens. Green boots. The only time I actually remember wearing these boots was for a Skinny Puppy concert that Pat and I never actually attended. We bought tickets, took the train ride into the city and then realized he had left the tickets at home. We got drunk instead, buying cans of beer from the NYC delis who sold them to us. We careened around the city like that, from deli to deli, publicly urinating, until it was time to catch the last train back to Long Island. But then we missed the train.

I remember staring at those green boots in Penn Station for hours that night as I slowly sobered up.

Anyway, so here I am ignoring the stock market. My short area up near $1188 was pretty solid. We’ve dropped nearly 30 points from there in the last 2 hours but I missed the trade. I realize I still feel a lot like a teenager even though I’m a father and have real responsibilities. The green boots are still in my closet but my friend is long gone, lost to some weird illness over a decade ago. Days like today, I realize how much I still miss him and how I wish I could give him a call to swap some old nostalgia about the Oldsmobile.

Instead I pop in “Nevermind” and try to remember, more worried about the fade in my memory than the fade in the market.

Follow me on Twitter.