The Trading Tribe
(c) Ed Seykota 2003-2011 - Write for permission to reprint.
Ed Seykota's FAQ
Readers Say Ed Says

September 11, 2011

Cookie Problem

Dear Ed,

I have three bags with cookies. One contains chocolate cookies, another vanilla cookies, the third assorted cookies (both chocolate cookies and vanilla cookies). The bags are labeled, but the labels do not correspond to the content (i.e. the bag with the label “chocolate” does not contain chocolate cookies, the bag with the label “assorted” does not contain assorted cookies, and so on). What is the minimal number of cookies that you have to extract to find out the content of all three bags?

Best regards,

Hmmm... I'd say the minimum number is zero if you can measure the bags' contents without "extracting" cookies.

If you have to extract, then extract just one cookie - from the bag with the assortment label bag - to ID that bag. Say you get a vanilla cookie. Now the chocolate-label bag cannot have either chocolate or vanilla, so it must hold an assortment and the assortment-label bag must hold chocolate.

September 11, 2011

Dear Ed,

I hereby attach a copy of the new TTID for the Amsterdam Trading Tribe, for which I have taken over the activities of 'Chief.

I reaffirm my commitment to attend the next TTP workshop in Europe and also volunteer to arrange / coordinate all logistics in the Netherlands, in case you consider conducting the workshop here.

You may remove the TTID for the Amersfoort Trading Tribe since I am no longer actively running a tribe at this location.

Warm regards,

September 11, 2011

Academic Studies

Dear Mr. Seykota,

Is there any kind of academic study that teaches useful skills for trading?

Best regards,

Academic studies teach academic skills.


September 12, 2011

Bastrop Fire


I have been thinking about you. I knew there were fires near Bastrop. I hope everything is safe on your end. Would love an update that you are safe on the FAQ.

The fire travels 20 miles and goes out on my ranch, with my help.


Sometimes A Guy's Gotta Do

what guys do.

September 12, 2011

Stocks in Up-Trend

Hello Ed,

I been visiting your site for long time, I noticed that you stopped showing "Stocks in Up-Trend" on the Chart server over a year ago. I was wondering if you could start it back up. I remember it was very helpful to me when I wrote my own trend trading system and saw some of the same stocks mentioned by your site as my own trading system.

Thank you,

Thanks for the catch.

September 15, 2011

Giving Up Control

Respected Guruji,

I prostrate before you and seek your Blessings, I hope and pray that you are fine. Its been long since I reported to you and I now commit to post you all my Hot Seat experiences as also other posts. I am a member of the [City] Trading Tribe.

I have this feeling of being a control-centric person as against intimate-centric person with my wife and daughter. I mention this issue in the check-in rounds for the last 3 tribe meets, but do not take this to the hot seat. I read on your site a lot about being intimate centric and want to walk the path.

During the tribe meet yesterday, a tribe member asks me what excuses I come up to avoid feelings. I tell that I resort to storytelling, say I am not hot enough and sometimes invent excuses not to attend tribe meets. Going back a bit on the day, I had a test of willingness with the wife in which I express my sadness in not allowing her to live her life she would live - my wife is puzzled a bit by the attitude and laughs this off but somehow, this dissipates some of the heat I feel before the hot seat. On the cue of saying I am not hot enough for the hot seat, I decide that I no longer want to delay feelings my feelings on the hot seat.

I take the hot seat - I start with the issue itself. I mention that ever since my marriage 22 years ago, I have always dominated the relation, I have always had the upper hand in the relation and have sometimes even resorted to bullying my wife. I also mention that I love my wife very much, am very fond of her, find ways to spend more time with her but always deny her to be herself.

I find this dominance to spread to my 20 year old daughter, which I try to justify as right upbringing and discipline. I also find that I have always given lots of time to my family and also tried my best to give them the most of the lifestyle I can give them. I hug them, love them but when it comes to them living their life they want to live, I somehow want to have a say in that. I also find that whenever they express defiance, I do not talk to them till such time as they come around. I find that all this is nothing but me being wanting to be in control of things all the time. The control thing also spreads its wings into me wanting to control my trades, the traffic.

On being prodded on my feelings by the PM, I feel that I do not like it, I am not like that. I feel selfish and disgusting. I also mention that this control over the relations with my wife and daughter stem out of insecurity that they might leave me alone and / or abandon me, though I am very sure they will not leave me. I feel sad and feel like crying, i shed a few tears and feel heaviness in the chest with a dry throat. On being asked to crank my feelings, I feel that there are thorns in my throat which grow in size to an extent that I have a long coughing bout for quite some time. Pursuant to this coughing, I find myself suffocated and unable to breathe - like a plastic bag tied around my head and I am gasping for breath. I am asked to freeze the feeling and try to recollect any incident from my life earlier wherein I feel the same feeling - I don't get any such recollection. Being in freeze mode for some time, I find myself giving up the resistance and becoming limp and then stiff as a rock.

My PM then tries to find the texture and colour of the rock to help me crank the feeling up - I lie in this state for sometime and when I try to push myself a lot, I find that the rock explodes and disintegrates into very small pieces of stone and then into dust. Aha. I feel myself freed and allow myself to feel me as dust, which then is sucked into the core of the earth, melting in the lava and losing my identity - Dust to Dust.

At this time, I think I have no feelings. The PM then further provokes me by asking me how do I feel about being alone, being abandoned - and I suddenly feel like crying but again just a few half-tears. The intensity of feelings is not as hot as the earlier but I feel like a person whose feet are in cast iron and chained, further cranking up to being a prisoner in a very small cell. At this point, I say, I cannot do anything and accept that I cannot change anything.

I repeat the sentences a few times loudly only to find myself completely free in no man's land. Aha.

Once again, the PM tries to provoke me by asking me how do I feel like bullying, by being in control - there are no feelings whatsoever, The hot seat ends.

On the checkout, a few comments were made by my tribe members - one felt that I was not completely willing to feel my willingness (I mention dissipation of heat due to conversation with wife earlier that day), another felt that I was in control of my feelings too and the third felt that there was lots of narrative in the hot seat, which could have involved the CM a lot more. Nevertheless, as always with my earlier hot seats, I see CM and Fred communicating - my key takeaways being the two Ahas mentioned above,

I resolve to being intimate with my wife and daughter and give them freedom to pursue their life as they deem fit and also to promote and encourage them in whatever they do. Where I see disagreement, I decide to express my feelings to them and use the test of willingness. I feel grateful to my PM as also my tribe members, who have relentlessly validated my feelings.

I also wish to thank You, My Respected Guruji. who have always been there to guide us mere mortals with your ever generous lovely knowledge and Blessings, we look forward to hosting you in [City] on your World Tour and request you to please be generous to spend lots of your time with us. I also pray to the Almighty for the good health, happiness and prosperity for you and your near and dear ones for all times to come.

Seeking your Blessings once again

Warm Regards,

Thank you for sharing your process and your insights.


Dominant People

generally develop a dependence

on their submissives.

When they set their submissives free

they also free themselves.



September 17, 2011

Reno Air Crash

Dear Ed,

Right now, I read about an airplane crash in Reno during a show. I know you live in Austin now, but as a long time resident in Incline Village, I think of you immediately and deeply hope all is well with you and your family and friends ...

I hug you.

Thank you for your concern.

September 19, 2011

Visit to San Francisco

Dear Chief Ed,

I hope all is well with you and the Austin TT.

San Francisco tribe invites you to visit our tribe on your world tour. We are now a strong group of 9, meeting regularly every 3rd Thursday.

Typically, after drumming and check-in we conduct TTP. Twice a year, we do/review snapshots. Five are full time traders and 3 are business people with prior exposure to trading and one is an attorney running a fund.

Thank you for your consideration.

I have the World Tour on hold for now.

September 20, 2011

Wondering Why

Hi Ed,

I trust all's well with you. FAQ has not been updated by you in quite a while & I was wondering why.

Thank you for your inquiry. No reason I care to dream up.