I experienced investor nirvana this morning. I was standing on Main Street in Disneyland out here in Southern California, taking a photograph of The Coca-Cola Refreshment Corner, with the cart vendors selling Nestle ice cream, and the loudspeakers begin playing, “The Wells Fargo wagon is a comin’ down the street”. It’s as if my investment portfolio has manifested into a capitalist dream around me. This really is the happiest place on Earth.
Maybe instead of Disney stock as a souvenir this trip, I’ll buy some more ownership in the makers of the world’s finest Dixie champagne. Or both? I don’t really need an excuse to buy Coke. If it’s a trading day and the earnings yield is at least rational relative to Treasury bond yields, it’s probably going to work out well for the long-term buyer due to the inherent economic advantages in the core business (it certainly has in the past).
The older I get, the more I wonder, do I get this irrationally excited about my work because I’m good at it, or am I good at it because I get so irrationally excited so it isn’t work? I stand outside of this and I think of the Asa Candler era, when he bought the entire firm lock, stock, and barrel for $2,300 and turned into into a money making empire. I think of the 1919 IPO, the original sugar contract including the legendary bottling arrangement that let Thomas and Whitehead amass huge fortunes, the Woodruff era, the Roberto Goizueta and Don Keough era.
We’re off to have lunch at the Carnation Cafe. None of us ate breakfast because we wanted to get over into the park early while it was still cool so we’re all hungry at this point. My dad is flying in tomorrow to join us. I am not sure what my plans are at this point since I was supposed to be out here looking at real estate but the entire state is burning down at the moment. Several of the communities I was going to examine are now under evacuation orders.