With a promise to get back to our treatise on market neutral products, let’s take a minute to welcome in that delightful season â€¦ summertime. Even the most driven and serious investor needs a pause from the markets. However, in some cases, it has been so long from a true respite that the “sturm and drang” of Wall Street can sometimes overwhelm and worse, cause bad decision making. With that in mind, here is our list of pursuits one can take during the “dog days.” Forgive us if we fail to mention slogging out to some tony beach hamlet, in an effort to unintentionally re-create the stress, while staring at the ocean.
Play a child’s game: We are not talking about golf, tennis or squash (in fairness, I have been playing golf since I was a boy). However, once you set up a tee or court time, gather the requisite equipment and exchange pleasantries, you are basically back at work. How about playing wiffleball, shooting a game of “Horse” on the basketball court or arranging a pick-up game of touch football? An activity where the only point is to have fun. We have all forgotten how enjoyable it can be.
Eat something decadent: It’s summertimeâ€”eat something “not so good” for you. Some suggestions, a banana split, of course, with the works; a chili cheese dog; fried clams; or a funnel cake. There’s a start, you get the idea.
Visit a farm stand: There is nothing quite as satisfying during the summer as freshly shucked corn on the cob with a farm-grown tomato salad. Add in a grilled piece of meat or fish, a cold beer, and you have the makings a remarkable meal.
Read a long-forgotten book: I am not talking about something on the New York Times best seller list or a choice from Kirkus, we suggest reading, or perhaps, re-reading something you enjoyed when you were younger. As for me, I enjoy anything from Steinbeck.
Take an “aimless” drive: Get in the car and go for a long ride without a predetermined destination. Take your time and “drink in” the sights and sounds. If you see something interesting, stop the car and explore it. If possible, leave the mobile phone home.
Play a Board Game: Remember the days before electronic games? Dust off the old boxes and take out a board game. We like to play “Milles Borne.” Some other fun suggestions are Scrabble, Parcheesi or Yahtzee. Preferably, do this in the evening with a cold pitcher of pink lemonade.
Sit by the Ocean: Go to the shore, sit on a bench and take in the enormity and majesty of the sea. Sit for a while and suddenly, the” last sale” in your favorite tech stock doesn’t seem that important.
Go Fish: I am not talking about taking a “fifty footer” out to the canyon for tuna. How about throwing a line over the pier on a pleasant evening? Take a loved one, a refreshment and couple of sandwiches on white with chips. Andy and Opie were definitely on to something!
Go on a “ride”: For the less faint of heart, you can give your favorite roller coaster a whirl. For others, a merry-go-round or a Ferris wheel will work. One other item to mention hereâ€”cotton candy.
“JAWS”: Finally, pick a long weekend, gather your favorite people, fire up the popcorn maker and watch the quintessential summer movie â€¦the original “JAWS”. Trust me, when Roy Scheider utters “Your gonna need a bigger boat,” you will remember how it feels to be ten years old again.
That is all for now. How about a Slushie? â€¦.â€¦The Thoughtful Arbitrageur.
Edward Strafaci is not an investment adviser. Nothing he writes should be construed as investment advice or an endorsement of any particular security. From time to time, a family trust with which he is associated may have positions in the securities he writes about. When it does, he will tell you. What he writes is meant to inform and in some cases to entertain and amuse. HedgeWorld’s Alternative Reality is not an investment advisory site. As a general rule you should not take investment advice from blogs, anyway. Consult a financial professional for investment advice, not a blog.
Read previous TTA entries here.