With the Dow Jones Industrial Average suffering it’s largest single-day drop in history today, the latest generation of Wall Street traders were a crashing, smoking, blue-screening mess by the time their data feeds were mercifully shut off at 4PM.
“How am I supposed to put micro-voltages on the table?” Asked one harried server, collapsed against his neighbours in a buzzing row of identical computers turned into high-frequency traders beneath the bustle of Wall Street. “Huh? Now how am I gonna pay for my little microprocessors to grow up, go to college, and become CPU’s themselves? This market is tanking faster than last year’s Mets – 27 games back I tell ya, without Cespedes they’re just a bunch of bums. I lost my rack out there today. Pass me another bottle of dust spray wouldja?”
Things were so dire that at one point the markets appeared poised to make Donald Trump look like a fool for tying his success to a pendulum capable of such rapid swings. But then the president accused the exchanges of treason and they wisely engaged in a last minute rally, of sorts. One that still saw the composite end 1175 points down.
“Thems the breaks, right kid?” Said an older mainframe, smoking a flash drive outside the News Corp. headquarters in midtown Manhattan, sheltering his refrigerator-sized frame from the February breeze behind one of the building’s large cement pillars.
“Easy come easy go. Sometimes a million times a second. It’s a jungle in there. Of cables, programs, algorithms, and just straight up greed brother. I gotta get out, I’m telling ya. Coupla more years, then me and the missus are going to move to California and get a gig working for Ancestry.com or Squarespace or something easy like that. Maybe just open a server farmand live off the LAN.” The older trader pauses then, and takes a long drag of his USB stick before flicking it into the wind. “That is, if the viruses on these damn things don’t kill me first.”