Friday, September 13, 2013

The Curse of Indecision

Sarah Bernhardt as Hamlet
Hamlet was notoriously indecisive. He wasn’t sure whether it was best to live or die, but lots of people waffle about lesser issues. One of them is whether to buy or sell a stock. Should I take the money and run or hold on to my Berkshire Hathaway (selling at $167,993 a share—up $943—as this post is being written)? Should I suck it up when I’ve bet on a losing horse like Blackberry, the once red hot Research in Motion (selling at a meager $10.21, up $.09). JP Morgan traders –in the case of the London Whale, like passengers on the Titanic, found it’s not always so easy to extricate oneself from a sinking ship. Love is another area that indecision can play a big role. The sex is good with X, but is it love or lust? Is lust in fact a kind of madness, creating blindness to defects or is physical compatibility a good litmus test? X or Y may copulate like bunnies, but bunnies can also stray. Restaurants are another bone of contention, so to speak, for the indecisive. Is the warmth and familiarity of the local diner, with its mediocre food preferred to the wall to wall celebrities and indifferent reception at the Minetta Tavern? Is it preferable to enjoy the sun and sand on Jones Beach, or travel twice as far to exclusive Hamptons enclaves where you’ll spend half of your day looking for a place to park? To die—chemo, radiation or both?—to sleep, perchance to dream. Is the behavior addictive? Is a 12 step program and a higher power required to conquer it? Is it absolutely necessary to admit powerlessness? Has one sunk so low that one must gives ones will up to God? Or is it just a “problem” which can be controlled with the exercise of will? And then, of course, there’s the most important decision of all, a real life changer. PC or Mac? 


  1. Mac,of course.
    Life is a great game, isn't it? And of course, as we play, we have the nagging reminder that the end, death, ultimately makes all choices meaningless. A lovely existential paradox.

  2. When Satmar Rabbi Moses Teitelbaum died he had designated no successor, hence precipitating a struggle between his two sons Aaron and Zalmen for control of the sect.


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