Panic on the streets of London

A minor international incident took place just down the street approximately 90 minutes ago.

I was at my physiotherapist’s studio. I was lying there strapped to the ‘reformer’ (a piece of equipment which will be familiar to those followers who do pilates), when he innocently asked, “So what’s this week’s assignment?”

“Assignment?” I asked.

I had just that very moment hit my pain point in the exercise to get my leg to bend as far as it should, and according to my physio I was still 5 centimeters away from the goal. 5 centimetres of pain may not sound like a lot, but when it’s combined with a leg that INSISTS it cannot bend further, the challenge becomes intense. It took my brain a second or two to disentangle itself from the task at hand in order for me to realise what my physio was saying to me.

He was talking about Counting Zeros, that’s the assignment he meant. And with that I released myself from the torture position and looked up at him in panic.


I’ve remembered my homework for 46 weeks in a row, but today it somehow slipped my mind completely. I have no idea when I would’ve realised this myself. Hopefully sometime today. How disappointing would it be to get 88.5% through this year-long experiment only to mess it up now, in the final 6 weeks.

Anyway, now that I’ve hobbled back home and grabbed my deck of cards, I can report that it’s the 2 of Spades.

My assignment is to create a list of handy calculations — ones that will help me make better financial decisions. Calculations that will put important factual information on the table when I have to make financial decisions. Calculations that might reveal, for example, whether it’s better to pay off a chunk of my mortgage or put the money into savings. That kind of thing.

It’s probably going to trigger a massive headache for me this week, but am slowly coming to accept that pain is necessary and that pain is good — it’s a sign that I’m moving in the right direction.

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