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Written on October 7, 2005, and categorized as Secret and Invisible.
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Don’t know if anyone noticed, but the global economy hiccupped yesterday. I quote from Aunty Beeb:

Stock markets across the globe have fallen amid persistent US interest rate jitters amid fears that oil prices could spur inflation. Wall Street’s Dow Jones wiped out early gains made on positive company news to close 31.38 points down at 10,285.98. The slide came despite oil prices dropping to near the $61 a barrel mark, as the fall triggered a drop in the price of heavyweight oil companies. In Europe the key Dax, Cac and FTSE markets sank more than 50 points. Wall Street’s drop came a day after the market slumped on comments from a Federal Reserve official who warned the central bank needed to stay alert to potential inflation pressures caused by rising energy prices.

What does it take for a hiccup to become a slump? Confidence, or rather, the lack of it. In the case of the global market, it’s it’s about how you feel about where you are, not about where you actually are.

European shares still recorded their biggest daily fall since the 7 July bombings in London as concerns over the future of interest rates knocked sentiment and shares in oil heavyweights tracked crude prices lower.

Sentiment! And we thought successful capitalism was all about wise investment, competitiveness, and industrial might.

I’ve been thinking about time, as I have quietly and without fanfare decided to base this month’s theme upon the entire concept of TIME, beginning, for some reason known only to the God of Instinct, with cycles of seven. This morning I remembered an astrological prediction I read a couple of months ago which said, anything you didn’t resolve seven years ago will return and you will (I will) have to deal with it now. Portentous stuff.

Being that Piscean combination of cynicism and suggestability, when I read this, I immediately dismissed the thought from my conscious mind lest it become a self-fulfilling prophecy, whereupon said concept, banished to the fermenting barrel of the deep, dark cellar of my subconscious, continues to offer new interpretations as it reaches excellent drinking quality. In any case, once I came out of denial about the fact that I WAS thinking back to where/how/who I was seven years ago, I started to make sense of me here/now. Here are seven things about seven years:

Seven years ago, I was depressed, as low as it gets. Now I am on a good level emotionally most of the time, and if I’m not, ah well fuck it, I’ll recover sooner or later.

Seven years ago, I was totally skint, Now I am rich enough to afford debts.

Seven years ago, I was single, and confused about whether I really wanted to be with anyone. Now I am living with my lover, and confused about what I really want from being with someone.

Seven years ago, I was beset by morbid fear, wearing a lot of black, and expecting the worst from civilisation. Now, I am wearing a lot of black, and expecting the worst from civilisation.

Seven years ago, my horizons were limited, reduced by the bad custodian I had become of myself, by negativity and bad habits. Now, I am staring at great vistas of opportunity and pleasure, produced by long, careful management of myself, and I accept that I can be profoundly negative and that I need to work on my bad habits.

Seven years ago, I was rescued by a colleague who dragged me into a cool music project. Now, I am working with my colleagues on a cool music project.

Seven years ago, I was politically disengaged and cynical; now, having briefly but meaningfully engaged, I am once again politically disengaged and cynical.

So, in some respects, I have not moved on at all, but I feel better about being here, in others, I have made good progress, in others, I have simply moved from one place to another, still carrying around the same old shit.

You can tell someone who is perfectly well that they have a month to live, and watch them fade. The world is full of stories like this, as much as it is full of “I should be dead but I didn’t give up and now am living life to the full” tales. Recently I experienced a major hiccup which didn’t become a slump. Or maybe it was a slump, but I decided it was a hiccup, so it went away. So, I guess, I must have had the right sentiment.

Confidence is a valuable commodity.

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