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Don’t Do Stupid. Watch the last step. Time to start thinking about shorts.

Readers of this blog are between 20 and death. Do not make the  rest of your life miserable by doing stupid today.

To wit:

+ Readers keep falling on the last step going down. Hold the railing.

+ Pedestrian pavements are not safe for pedestrians. Unless you walk slowly and carefully.

+ Don’t mess with machinery that’s stuck. Get help. A tow truck? Another person?

+ Shoulders are our most common point of failure. Then backs. Don’t exert either. They take months to recover and sometimes never recover, even with surgery.

+ When in doubt, don’t. Speed now is not worth two years of shoulder rehab tomorrow.

Don’t Do Stupid.

Our tech stocks are no longer in fashion..But shorts?

Well not all.  Apple, Amazon, Netflix and EXPE are up nicely today. NVDA is bouncing, finally.

This business of picking stocks is allocation — time, money and focus. How much time you want to spend. How much money. And what you want to focus on.

My biggest mistake is focusing on stocks that I think will go up. I have listed ones I didn’t like and ignored them. Wrong! I should have said, “If I don’t like them. I should sell them short.” For example: the Chinese stocks — BABA, TME, PDD and IQ. The carriers — T and VZ. The  pandemic stocks — ZM and PTON. The cannabis stocks, like CGC. And my favorite short, Lemonade, which I wanted to short, then lost the note to myself…. Idiot. But look..

Jim Chanos, the master of shorts, was on CNBC recently. He said he was short Doordash (DASH), Wynn and Draftkings (DKNG).

I need to think both ways — stocks I like and stocks I don’t.

Can you forecast?

On my way to tennis this morning, the radio said it was going to rain all day.

It hasn’t rained since.

Sunday’s New York Times has a piece by Jeff Sommer:

The Markets Are Confused, but Wall Street Is Still Making Predictions
The emergence of the Omicron variant underlines the difficulty of planning even a few weeks ahead. Wall Street is forecasting next year’s precise market returns, regardless.

His conclusion: No can make accurate predictions. But long-term are better than short-term. Read all about it. Click here.

60 Minutes did a piece on China

They confirmed what we’re known: President Xi is nuts. He has a “Vision” of China that makes zero sense. Every day he thinks of more ways to kill the golden goose.

You do not want to buy Chinese stocks — no matter how “cheap” they become.

If I were a young, talented, ambitious, tech-educated Chinese, I’d be getting out of there as fast as possible. He’ll be in charge for at least another 20 years. He’s only 68.

Watch more here.

Readers ask about hearing aids

First, understand: We get older. We hear less well. Second, there is no magic bullet. You will never hear as well as your children, or your wife.

There are two types of aids to your hearing. There are devices that will amplify a sound source — a TV, an iPhone (phone call, music or podcast) or a Zoom video call. The sound source is clean, electronic and you have control over the volume.

For TVs, I like Sennheiser headphones. They’re good, cheap and, most importantly, you can have several people listening at different volumes. You can mute your TV. You and your spouse can listen to it at different volumes and not disturb the precious sleeping grandkids upstairs.

For one-person listening and speaking — on iPhones and on Zoom calls, — Apple’s EarPods work perfectly. Don’t stand over the toilet with them in your ears.

For hearing aids, you have two choices: Go to a audiologist. Have his/her prescribe a $6,000 pair, which you may or may not like. They will tell you “Give the aids three weeks to get used to them.”

Or, buy these for $150.

I have the previous version. I love  them. This new includes noise cancelling. Should be better. Click here.

P.S. Don’t ever buy hearing aids that use batteries. The rechargeable ones are much better.

Why don’t people get vaccinated?

I’ve read a zillion stories of hospital patients pleading with the doctors to “Please vaccinate me.”

Only to be told “It’s too late.”

So why don’t all people get vaccinated? We have employees at our New York City apartment building who preferred to be fired than be vaccinated!

Why? I heard the “reasons” but never understood them.

Yesterday the New York Times published a piece “What Causes Vaccine Hesitancy?”

The authors looked into the reasons. It’s the best summary I’ve read.

Their conclusion, “We’ve found that people who reject vaccines are not necessarily less scientifically literate or less well-informed than those who don’t. Instead, hesitancy reflects a transformation of our core beliefs about what we owe one another.”

Read the piece here.

I feel pretty. Oh so pretty.

Actually not. Last night I felt terrible. I was sneezing. My nose wouldn’t stop running — which can be a Covid symptom. I feared I had covid. (I didn’t.)

I tested myself using this kit.

Two tests cost $23.99. Click here.

When my test came out negative, I felt better.

Abbott stock (ABT) continues to do well.

How much can you believe the negative reviews on Amazon? 

Not much, it seems. Take this marvelous backup device I have bought seven times from Amazon:

Read the reviews on Amazon, you’d think the thing was a complete disaster. It loses all your files. It is very slow, etc.

It’s none of these. I’ve been using this flash drive to back up my working files, to move files to other machines and to carry a full backup on travels. It works flawlessly.

The thing is tiny. It costs a bargain $25.95 on Amazon. I always have two of them with me at all times. Just in case. They give me comfort. Click here.

It’s hard to fathom the insensitivity of this U.S. Congressman

WASHINGTON, Dec 4 (Reuters) – A U.S. congressman on Saturday posted a Christmas picture of himself and what appeared to be his family, smiling and posing with an assortment of guns, just days after four teenagers were killed in a shooting at a Michigan high school.

Massie, who represents a solidly Republican district, posted the picture of himself and six others holding firearms resembling an M60 machine gun, AR-15 semi-automatic rifle and a Thompson submachine gun.

“Merry Christmas! ps. Santa, please bring ammo,” Massie tweeted.

For the Reuters link, click here.

Faith in America

We have four gas stations in Chatham. Two are owned by Indians (from India) and one by an Afghani. One Indian secured a liquor license and is now selling booze out the back of the gas station. He’s trying to get a cannabis license. He drives a Mercedes. The Afghani is wearing a handsome tie I gave him.

It’s a wonderful world. See you tomorrow. — Harry Newton