Last year I visited a lake and was surprised with the huge fish that were being pulled out of it. The queues to get in were massive and it seemed even those that have never fished before could pull out massive 30 lbs fish. I even had a go and took home several whoppers for my tea.
Over Easter I revisited it and was surprised to see that the queues had gone and the general atmosphere was negative. I managed to have a chat with a guy I met last year. Gordon Gold was looking pretty low but was putting on a brave face. Counting three rods, I asked him why he had so many.
"Well, it's simple, see that red rod there, the rod and bait on it cost me $17,000. That blue rod was much better, it only cost me $13,000. The green rod, was a right bargain, it cost me $10,000. At one point last year a single big fish could sell for as much as $20,000 so I'm well happy with my investments and plan to keep buying more rods if I can get them even cheaper."
"Have you seen any big fish being caught recently?"
"No where near the amount caught last year. The last big one I caught went for a tidy $11,000, although Darren Day over there caught a big one recently that only went for $7,400. There are guys that have been here for years that that have got fed up and reel in their rods and sell them and their bait back to Suzy Short. A few have even opened shops doing what she is doing. They are complete idiots but I love them because it means I can buy more rods and bait cheaper from Suzy. In fact I just bought this black rod, Suzy was almost giving it away at $7,000. I'm well chuffed because my average cost of rods is now down from 13.3k to 11.75k"
"Aren't you worried that there are no big fish left or any that are will be worth less than the one Darren Day recently sold his for?"
"No way, I keep seeing Darren Day catching small fish every day."
"But you are only trying to get the big fish? And didn't Darren Day say that the fish he catches are getting smaller almost every day and when he catches big ones, the price he is able to sell them for is getting lower?"
"Well, if I wait long enough those small fish will grow into big fish and people will always want big fish! He's a fool for selling the fish he catches, he should hold on until they are worth more."
"But that could take years and maybe they will never grow as big as the fish are today, let alone the end of last year. Wouldn't you be better off spending your time and money somewhere else until you know the big fish are back? Or maybe do what Darren is doing and try and buy a cheap rod, catch a few fish and cash in. Suzy Short also seems to be doing well, couldn't you just focus on selling to the fishermen for a while? Once it looks like the big fish are back you can always swap back to doing what you did last year."
"No way. That would mean I would have to admit my red, blue, green and black rods are worth less than what I paid for them. If I leave these rods in the water I haven't lost a dollar."
"But what if the big fish never return?"
"Dude, you are stupid. That would be great, it would mean I can keep buying my rods cheaper and cheaper, lowering my average cost of rods. I'll simply leave them in the water forever because they could eventually be worth $20,000 or more!"
"Won't you run out of money eventually?"
"Yes, but as long as those rods are in the water, I will be asset rich!"