Write, Wrong and Sean

I get letters from readers concerned about my language. For example, one nice person wrote in to say:

Hi, Sean, love your writing style and focused analysis. Am a subscriber of the Supercycle Investor and Wealth Supercycle.

Recommend a couple of changes to reflect the more enlightened times we are in. Instead of “leprosy” (suffering is not of their fault), how about “gonorrhea” (suffering caused by one’s choices) — for the same effect?

Also, you previously used the phrase “Wham! Bam! Thank You! Ma’am.” That didn’t sit well with the ladies in my family. Suggest you have ladies proofread your articles — as they are very perceptive to improper analogies. It works well for me.

My response:

I’m always glad to get reader mail. I don’t want to embarrass you. Indeed, I’d like to make you happy. But you should know, I’m 58. The chances of changing anything about me now are very slim. Or as I’ve called it before, “a snowball’s chance in a Texas barbecue.” You can ask President Trump. It’s hard for us old dinosaurs to change our ways. And I stomp around the English language in T-Rex sized boots.

This style of language is sometimes called “politically incorrect.” In other words, not restraining your words if they offend or upset other people in society. Because in America today, it’s easy to trip over somebody’s attitudes toward sex, race or disability. Especially when the goalposts move all the time.

I don’t call it being “politically incorrect.” I call it “being an old grump with a wicked sense of humor.” Perhaps we could compromise on “embarrassing.” Heaven knows, it is the bane of my long-suffering wife and children.

Also, know that all my professional writing is edited by a lady. Her name is Dawn, aka “The Goddess.” Because she holds ultimate power. She is an excellent editor, and her efforts often go unheralded. You’ll be happy to know that when I write something that makes her wince too much, she takes it out. So imagine what my writing would look like if not for the efforts of the Goddess. It might curl your hair!

Now, let’s talk specifically about my use of the word leprosy. I’m sure you’re referring to a phrase I’ve used more than once: “The U.S. dollar is winning a beauty contest in a leper colony.” In other words, it is the “least unattractive” currency.

Now, how could I substitute “gonorrhea” for leprosy in that one? Maybe I could say, “The U.S. dollar has the least gonorrhea of the major currencies, but its dingle-dangle-dongle is going to fall off eventually.” That loses its punch a bit.

As for “Wham! Bam! Thank You, Ma’am!,” I’m sure you recognize that as a callout to the song “Suffragette City,” by the immortal David Bowie.

Oh, sure, Mr. Bowie says he’s dead. But he’s not fooling me.

You can interpret the song many ways. But to me, it’s a song about personal confusion and trying to resist the lure of the inevitable. And finances are involved. (“You can’t afford the ticket.”)

That particular article was about how confused the market is, and how lithium’s next big rally is inevitable. When that rally is in the rear-view mirror, there will be many indeed who “can’t afford the ticket.” When they could have bought it for pennies today.

That’s what was rambling around in my labyrinth brain when I wrote the article. And on any given day, my brain is chockablock with odd bits of song, history (recent and ancient), meditations on cheese, board games, books, science fiction, travel and more. Whenever I drag something through the labyrinth, the oddest of dust bunnies attach themselves.

My point is that when I write something like: “the major averages are bleeding red like a hemophiliac convention held in a razor-blade factory,” believe me, I have nothing against people with hemophilia. I’m not trying to offend anyone. It’s just that’s the best metaphor I could think of at the time.

I appreciate you reading my writing and analysis. While some things might offend you, I hope you keep reading. After all, this market is very tricky. It shifts from week to week, sometimes from day to day.

In short, the market gives us more wrong signals than a drive-through traffic school. And if you try and navigate it on your own, you could end up with enough egg on your face to open an all-you-can-eat breakfast buffet.

I want you to do well. Stick around. I’ll try not to embarrass you too much.

All the best,
Sean

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Comments 13

  1. Bob Rahaim October 20, 2018

    I like your writing Sean. In fact I like anything that’s not politically. I’m 80 years old, so you know theirs no chance of me changing my ways, just ask my wife of 53 years. On second though, don’t ask her; I have enough lumps on my head.

    Reply

    • Sean Brodrick October 22, 2018

      Ha! Thanks, Bob

      Reply

  2. Neil Mann October 20, 2018

    Sean

    Glad to hear that you are incapable of changing your approach and methodology on analogies.

    Wouldn’t want that, it would ruin the charm and wit embodied within your colorful phrasing.

    Reply

    • Sean Brodrick October 22, 2018

      Thanks Neil. Just to be clear, I am constantly studying my trading methodologies to see if those need to change.

      Reply

  3. Paul Germano October 20, 2018

    Your column,do as you want.You are doing a good job in the worst case world scenario.Cheers,PaulG,Aus

    Reply

  4. Tom Skupa October 20, 2018

    Sean
    Your response is appalling…the world now sees male chauvinists, not just male sex fiends, as unacceptable in the post #MeToo world.
    Your lame excuses about not being able to change, at your age, is unacceptable in my world…the father of 2 daughters and 1 granddaughter…and it is not just politically incorrect, it is now socially unacceptable.
    Personally, I am one of your subscribers because Larry Edelson passed away, too soon…he would also be appalled at your attitude.
    I’d also like to know what Mr. Weiss thinks of your language…I expect that everyone on your staff is afraid about him finding out about your rationale for unacceptable language.
    You should be ashamed of yourself…as is your “Goddess”, probably.
    However, she is probably afraid to tell you because she wouldn’t want to lose her job, if she told you what she really thinks of your garbage can language.
    Frankly, I would probably cancel my subscription, if you didn’t still utilize Larry’s IA technology which still gives a unique view of forecasting Oil, Gold, etc. markets…that is still worth the price of subscription.
    Sincerely…Tom Skupa

    Reply

    • Dawn P at Weiss Ratings October 25, 2018

      Hi Tom, thanks for your feedback. I have a great deal of respect for Sean — you’re not going to find too many people with his heart, sense of humor and dedication to helping his customers and colleagues thrive. As for me, I read a lot of very dry institutional research and appreciate how Sean can read the same thing and summarize it easily in a way no one else in this field could. But if I were editing publications that had to quote high-level political officials who have burned the definition of decorum to the ground, I can’t say I’d be as happy in my role!

      Reply

  5. a.scheltens October 21, 2018

    Dear Sean,

    I recently became a lifetime subscriber.
    I get a lot of information about profits gained in the past. You are talking about the cycles from
    2018-2023( five years).
    I have US$ 100.000,- ready to invest now.
    My question is can you recommend me in this moment how to invest my 100.000,-
    Thank you.

    Kind regards arie scheltens

    Reply

  6. GEORGE ARLEDGE October 21, 2018

    SEAN I AM A IN THE AGE OF YOUR FATHER. NOT MUCH UPSETS ME. YOUR CHOICE OF WORDS ADD A TOUCH OF SPICE TO WOUR WRITINGS. MANY REPORTS BY OTHER WRITERS ARE BORING AND LONG, MAKING ME TO SKIP AROUND THERE DULL WRITING. ONE PARAGRAPH COULD CONTAIN THE INFORMATION THAT TAKES THEM A PAGE TO FINELY GET AROUND TO TELLIN ME WHAT THEY THINK, THEN THEY HEDGE ON THAT.

    THANKS FOR YOUR LIVELY COMENTS.

    GEORGE

    Reply

    • Sean Brodrick October 22, 2018

      Thanks, George. I appreciate it.

      Reply

  7. Bob Bucknell October 21, 2018

    Sean,

    It’s never to late to change. Only pride, arrogance and the attitude that, “I’m right and the rest of the world isn’t”, is what keeps one from changing. No doubt your investing skills are quite good but your people skills, well, as one of your readers wrote: “That didn’t sit well with the ladies in my family” . . . what does that tell you Sean?

    At 58 you’re still a spring chicken in my eyes. I’m in my seventies and do all I can to change bad habits because winning friends and influencing people are better standards than being “cocky” and disrespectful.

    I’m a subscriber of Wealth Supercycle and commend you for your work. However, having said that, you tend to cause me to lose my respect for you because of your attitude. I choose to hold onto whatever respect I have for people no matter what they do or say. With some, that’s very difficult. What’s that worth to you Sean.

    Choose this day who you wish to serve . . . Yourself, or your fellow man!

    Don’t worry Sean, I’ll keep praying for you.

    Reply

  8. Tara October 21, 2018

    Dear Sean, have almost decided to cancel subscription because I too, think your comments are distasteful. Why use either leprosy or gonorrhea…I lived in India for several years, where there are several leprosy colonies, so perhaps I am more sensitive to your comments. I was glad to see the letter you published, as I have thought often of writing you about this very subject. I am a female, in my late 70’s, and I agree with the person writing the letter. Also with the previous comment. You may have a lot of knowledge about the markets, and really wish your paying subscribers to do well, but your distasteful comments are distracting! It doesn’t make me want to read it; it makes me not want to read any further. Perhaps you could find another outlet for this ‘creative’ language, rather than to paying subscribers of market advice. Dawn (the Goddess) needs to step up her game.

    Reply

    • Dawn P at Weiss Ratings October 25, 2018

      I appreciate your perspective, Tara. I’ve been Sean’s editor for eight years and can tell you honestly that he’s among the kindest, most thoughtful and most perceptive people I have ever worked alongside. I’m always confident that he’s coming from a good place when he’s making what could otherwise be very dry content into something you’ll remember and, we hope, decide to take action on.

      Reply