The Story So Far… Part 1
In all honesty, I’ve thought long and hard about whether writing the story of how my “career” in trading came to be. On the one hand, it makes sense to provide some context and a base, particularly something to look back at down the line should I somehow make the goal of becoming a full time prop trader. On the other, putting my bleeding heart out there warts and all is something for angsty teens on Tumblr, and whilst I’m certainly not immune to some angsty teen moments, I should also note I’m nearly 40 with 2 kids and need to grow up.
Ultimately what it came down to is, can I write this recap easily, and can it provide cheap content for the next 5 weeks? Yes, and indeed, yes.
As I can’t guarantee everyone here will have read the About scrawl, here’s a quick introduction. My name is Syxx (not actually, although that would be a sweet name), and I’m a 30-something Brit, working as a digital trainer at the time of writing. It’s a career I’ve long wanted to get into, but it’s been something of a disappointment – lots of politics, and not enough actual teaching. I would love to say I was happy with quiet suburban white collar mediocrity – it would’ve saved a lot of problems – but I wasn’t. I wasn’t in the mid 00s either, which is where this story really begins.
At that time, I was working as customer service for a flea-bitten web design company. They marketed one of those online web builder products that were all the rage back then – before social media made it easy to publish pages upon pages of worthless drivel (just like this website, then). Somehow my work was full time, despite the fact I answered maybe 17 e-mails a day and spent the rest of my time writing awful fanfiction and browsing video game websites. You couldn’t argue that I wasn’t doing my job – I was doing every bit of it. There just wasn’t a lot of job to do.
There also wasn’t a lot of money to earn either. I’d started there when I was 19, and had one pay rise in the space of about 8 years. I had let myself slip into chronic depression, and as living at home had made life affordable I was just about dead enough inside to bounce from the 9-5 to the video games awaiting at home and back again. Eliminating the 9-5 became the challenge. Unfortunately, instead of doing the right thing and looking for a job where I was respected and could earn some decent coins, I backed the wrong horse – literally.
Betfair became a pastime that I would use to avoid social interaction. At first, the prototypical lay the draw strategy, the art of going against 0-0 and 1-1 in the hope that someone scores a goal and you can trade out for decent profit. I became something of a king at this in international football – however, I would give all my profits back when the professional game returned back to the week by week club fixtures. My fault was, I couldn’t accept a loss – my trading became pure gambling in these situations. I blew bank after bank after bank chasing goals that never materialised.
Then, as I became increasingly desperate, I made the situation worse. I started playing Blackjack. I don’t like to recall this particular time as it triggers me to all fuck, but let’s just say that by the end of 2005, I was 23, owed £8000 to my credit card company, had £9000 in student debt, and needed something to change.