Discover more from QTR’s Fringe Finance
Happy New Year From QTR
Exceptionally grateful and thankful for all of you.
I just wanted to write a quick note and say Happy New Year, Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everybody that has supported the blog, podcast or my Twitter over the last 10 years. I don’t really talk too much about my personal life, but I figured because it’s the holidays…why not.
First off, check this out. It has officially been a decade since I started opining (read: talking shit) on markets and it has been so cool to amass such a following. Especially because I started the QTR moniker literally as a way to earn beer money writing about whatever on Seeking Alpha.
Here’s one of the only looks back I could find, from the Wayback Machine, to my Twitter from 8 years ago - and a link to my WordPress!
I had 4,900 followers!
Looking back, it’s wild to think about. Not many people know, but 2022 was a wild year for me, inclusive of a months-long health scare this summer when I found a lump in my lymph nodes (and another subsequent unknown thing during follow-up imaging) on Memorial Day weekend. Ultimately, it was a scare that I wound up coming out on the good side of.
But needless to say, it was 3 months of chaos and panic - but three months where everyone I communicate with regularly in my life, my friends, my co-workers, my family, my followers, were literally all there for me when I needed it. It was pretty incredible. Every single person I spoke to had the same answer for me: “Take your time, do what you need to, focus on you first.”
That piece of mind is immeasurable at times of distress. Hopefully you can do your part in passing it on to someone else that finds themselves in distress in the new year - it’ll mean everything to them like it did to me.
Once I got my final MRI in late summer and was confirmed to be healthy, I promptly took off to Ventnor, NJ, where one of my great friends and long-time tattoo artist, Ned DeLeon (hands down the best tattoo artist I’ve ever met) took me surfing. Here’s me, really happy this summer, after getting some good news.
Despite the holdups over the summer, I met a lot of my goals I set for myself this year. I competed in at least 2 jiu jitsu tournaments, despite changing academies several times due to moving, and 4 different road races, where I placed in my age group (along with my dad, who also kicked ass in several races). Here we are together after I looped back to finish a 5K with him:
I ran more this year than any other year, including a 15 mile personal distance PR and incredible elevation (thanks mostly to Mont Royal in Montreal):
There have been six…yes six…jiu jitsu academies who welcomed me this year as a team member and were so kind to me…at all of which the jiu jistu is/was incredible: Carlson Gracie in Montreal, QC, Rolles Gracie in Old Bridge, NJ, Puzon Jiu Jitsu in Milltown, NJ, The Jiu Jitsu Company in Philadelphia, PA, Renzo Gracie PA in Hatfield, PA and my kind brothers down at 609 Jiu Jitsu in Egg Harbor, NJ.
Here’s how I finished the silver medal match in my division this spring, which inadvertently Jeff Bloovman from Daniel Gracie Philadelphia (who just got his black belt - congrats, Jeff!) wound up coaching me for. Because it’s a GIF you can’t hear him screaming at me to pull down my shin:
And I hope he doesn’t mind me sharing this story, but I even had the pleasure of meeting and rolling with comedian Joey Diaz one day earlier this year. For anyone wondering if he really is who he comes off as on podcasts…literally his first words to me ever were when he walked up to me during a guard passing drill and said: “Don’t you try that scissor sweep ya cocksucka!”
Joey works hard and keeps to himself when he’s training. He’ll also offer you edibles in the parking lot if you walk out with him. What a great guy.
Here I am with Drew Puzon’s merry band of brothers, all exceptional guys:
And sweating it out with my kind friends at Carlson Gracie in Montreal:
Also in Montreal:
And with my kindest friends at JJC in Philadelphia:
I also worked on my Chess game a little bit with one of my best friends this year, who gifted me an incredible chess board for my birthday. He kept many of my nights busy playing tons of online chess. I’m finally flirting with four digits when it comes to my rating - but I’m literally only playing one opening. At some point I’ll have to expand the depth of my game, in chess and jiu jistu. Maybe 2023 I’ll focus on evolving both games.
With regard to the blog, everybody bore with me and there were some cool wins this year, not the least of which was Maxar getting bought out on my 40th birthday just days ago. On the wins side there was Exxon, Lockheed, shorting ARKK, shorting TSLA and many more. There were also some fuckups, including being long marijuana stocks (I’m still long), Robinhood and numerous others.
Regardless, viewership went bananas when my article about Joe Rogan at the beginning of the year went viral, amassing nearly 1 million reads across platforms and lighting a fire under my then-brand-new blog’s ass. It was a great start to 2022.
And the best thing? My readers and my sponsors give me a lot of leeway: I don’t record or write unless I really feel like I have something to say. None of my content has ever been “forced”, which I think has led to some of its success. I feel like people know I mean what I say and I say what I mean. But publishing like this - and not on some rigorous schedule - means that those who follow me require patience. I’m not always going to have insights or an idea every day. Some days I defer to my friends, like Kenny Polcari, who have insights when I don’t. Some days I write about politics or Covid instead of the markets because…well, that’s what I feel like doing. The patience necessary from my readers to be able to do this is incredible and it means everything to me. I promise you no forced bullshit for as long as you continue to have that patience with me.
I always remember being a kid and loving reading 2600: The Hacker Quarterly. It came out only quarterly, which was fucking annoying — BUT, when a new edition came out I knew I would read literally every single word. With my podcast, I’d rather it be this way than to firehose you with a meaningless spray of uninteresting filler.
I want to thank my longtime supporters like Sang Lucci, George Gammon and the guys over at JM Bullion for continuing to support the podcast throughout the years, despite my spotty record of putting out episodes and my constant inability to remember their sponsorship “scripts”. These people deserve some love if you enjoy my content, so reach out to them and shoot them a ‘thanks’ if you have time.
And above all I just want to say thank you guys for everything. I hope you all have a blessed holiday with you and yours this weekend. I’m looking forward to relaxing heading into 2023, and kicking the new year off feeling calm, grateful, thankful and focused.
If you’re not yet a paying subscriber to the blog, I’m offering 60% off for life to anyone that wants to use this link. If you’re already a subscriber and don’t have the discount, you can opt-out and then re-subscribe using the link: