We’re Americans.

We love excess and excesses and are probably harboring lots of pent up need to exercise excess, just waiting for an economic turnaround to finally get here.

In the meantime as those parts of the world that were once derisively referred to as “third world” are discovering the joy of excess, we still know how to party with the big boys.

I’m not certain whether I meant that literally or figuratively.

On Wednesday and Thursday my oldest son and I were in New York City, a place I rarely went to during all of the years spent growing up in the Bronx.

Of course, back then, the only places in “the city” to visit were things like museums and art galleries and they always seemed to take their child unfriendly causes to excess. Even the dinosaurs were a bit much, as if bigger was actually better when it came to extinct species.

Some of the great homes along Fifth Avenue, past residences to the Astors, the Morgans and others weren’t appreciated by me back then, either.

Not even the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, a display of inflated cartoon characters taken to excess was enough to attract me to see them on anything other than a TV set.

They didn’t have things like Bloomberg News and CNBC back in the old days. Not just to watch on TV, but to physically step foot into.

Those are great attractions. I’d see them any day. And that’s exactly what we did while visiting the past couple of days.

Sure, Wall Street was always there, but I never knew about Wall Street when growing up.

The funny thing is that I still have no desire to actually visit the epitome of capitalism. No desire to have the obligatory bull and bear picture taken. I did, however, want to have a picture taken with some Occupy Wall Street protestors, especially since they are, among other things, protesting the great excesses of Wall Street and banking.

Maybe next year,

Corned BeefAh, but a picture of a real New York corned beef sandwich. Now we’re talking pictures.

On the way back home we stopped for New York deli food. Not to be overly chauvanistic, but you really can’t get that kind of corned beef or pastrami anywhere else. The nice thing about the New York delis is that they don’t offer corned beef sandwiches with a choice of cheeses or breads.

You get a choice of pickles, or if you don’t like choice, you just get them all.

Talk about excess, but at least the elimination of cheese respects your need to maintain healthy cholesterol levels and the pickles must do something good.

I think that they’re meant to be swallowed whole to help propel the other ingested contents toward their ultimate destination.

The corned beef sandwich shown barely captures half of the entire sandwich.

No match for these delicious monstrosities, we gave in to woefully inadequately sized stomachs and sheepishly asked for doggie bags.

I was never so embarrassed, having always finished all of my restaurant meals in the past.

We placed the leftovers in bags and put them into the car trunk and just watched the rear chassis sag and groan a bit. A sight and sound very similar to that which we observed in many of the deli’s patrons.

The deli trop was a fitting end to the previous day when the market fell 394 points.There were lots of groans.

Talk about more excess.

Yet another day where the end result was one of an over-reaction, except there was really nothing to which the reaction was in response. Not even a rumor about a plan to have a plan to solve the Italian debt crisis falling through.

In professional trading circles that’s referred to as a third derivative.

I can understand that kind of excessive reaction only because it’s not very rare anymore, but I still can’t understand the root cause. How is it that all of these very smart people who are driving the trading decisions of the big money players so rapidly fleeing their convictions?

But still,  I can also understand the excessive reaction of Green Mountain Coffee Roaster shares after announcing  poor earnings and questions continuing regarding accounting regularities.

Of course, when I bought my shares a few weeks ago I was fully aware of the overhang and the possibility of finding a chalk outline on the floor of the board room. That kind of unpleasntness could easily send a momentum stock reeling.

And it did.

But nearly 40%? After already suffering a 40% or so decline from its recent high?


Earlier in the morning I was sitting in the parlor of the cute boutique hotel in which we stayed and was watching the ticker showing Green Mountain’s descent.

It was ironic that while I was stirring my coffee with what appeared to be a genuine silver spoon that my Green Mountain daily disaster’s bitterness was being tempered by silver’s own descent.

Of course, silver and its wealthier cousin gold, have seen their own recent share of excesses, as everyone seems to hunger to own them, as well.

Since I now own a sizeable piece of the ProShares UltraShort Silver ETF’s, I like it when silver prices go down. So as silver was doing just that, after a recent climb, my small Green Mountain piece, which has been nicely hedged with weekly options over the past three weeks was less of a nuisance.

In a show of true excess, Bloomberg Rewind actually lived up to its name and then some. On Thursday, it showed a clip of my Wednesday appearance on the show talking about the impact of Green Mountain’s after hours announcement.

Sort of like Bloomberg Meta Rewind.

Although the clip seemed to indicate that I wasn’t worried about the then 35% after hours price drop, I think it was taken out of context.

What I had actually meant to say was that I violently vomit at the very thought or taste of Green Mountain Coffee.

But I can see how they might misinterpret my words.

Fat guyWhen the day finally settled, some of Wednesday’s excess was sucked out of the system, although Green Mountain decided to just settle in near its low for the day.

Normally after having a stock take a big hit like this  I would exercise the “Having a Child to Save a Life ” strategy. But with Wednesday’s broad drop and Thursday’s half hearted recovery, I may not see any cash free up from assignments to pick up additional, but now discounted Green Mountain shares.

That prospect leaves just as bitter a taste, because an opportunity is a terrible thing to waste.

Or I could choose this opportunity to follow the Bernard Baruch axiom of selling when you hit the 10% loss level.

Conveniently, I’ll include my options premiums received over the past 3 weeks in the calculation and ignore that advice.

I suppose that you could possibly stick to your process to excess and inadvertently create a new dogma.

I’m not a fan of dogma of any variety, unless it’s potentially my own. Unfortunately, I don’t have enough adherents to be able to call it “dogma.”

A cult? Maybe, but it might just be a cult of one.

But if I did have real dogma and it really became popular, I think I would call it “Hot Dogma” and see to what excess I could get people to suck it down. It definitely sounds more palatable that way.

To make it all easier, have a little Green Mountain Coffee to wash it all down. That’s much better than the Kool-Aid the other guy was offering.