As you are probably aware, the stock market today fell faster than a newborn foal on roller-skates, then rebounded like Shaq on stilts. No, that's not right. Can we think of a better metaphor for what happened today than "roller-coaster?"
Yes, even we are guilty of falling back on the old amusement park chestnut to describe the Dow Jone's insane 1,000-point drop and subsequent near-comeback. As was ABC Nightly news, the AP, Marketwatch and many others. (CBS News called it a "bungee jump." Nice!) Makes sense, because the market went up then down: Just like a roller-coaster! But reading this New York Times explanation of the myriad factors behind today's craziness makes us think that "roller-coaster" is a terrible metaphor. Here's what happened, basically, according to the Times:
For months, traders have been worried that the next financial crisis might come out of Europe, where Greece is on the brink of financial collapse. The recent riots in Greece and some disappointing news out of the European Central Bank spooked them even more. This made them super-sensitive to a suddent drop in the market caused by weird trading errors in some stocks, including Procter & Gamble, 3M and Accenture. (One of which may have been due to a trader hitting "B" for billions instead of "M" for millions!) So, everyone freaked out and sold all their stocks because—oh no! The economy is collapsing! But then a bunch of other people bought the stocks again because it wasn't as bad as it looked, and also that's how the stock market works. At the end of the day, the Dow was down a substantial—but manageable—347.80 points.
So, Greece, European bankers, human error. Let us put this into the Gawker Metaphor Matrix 2000™. Computing. METAPHOR RESULT:
Today, the Wall Street went to a strip mall Greek restaurant and ordered the fried calamari. The Greek restaurant, being shoddily-run, undercooked the calamari so it was tough and tasteless. This error was compounded by the fact that, earlier, a sick European banker had sneezed on the raw squid as it sat in the seafood market. So Wall Street caught a virulent European stomach flu and sprinted to the back of the restaurant and began vomiting. Things looked bleak; would Wall Street die in the dingy restroom of the Acropolis off I-9? However, as Wall Street was throwing up in the toilet, the attractive daughter of the Greek restaurant's proprietor knocked on the door: "Is everything alright in there?" she asked with a titillating mix of worry and forbidden longing. Instantly, Wall Street began feeling better and was able to compose itself enough to ask the comely Grecian out on a date. They went on a date and had a pretty good time, but things just didn't work out in the end.
OK, readers: Top that. The winning entry will be entered into the Gawker Stylebook as the correct way to refer to any abnormal Wall Street fluctuation.
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