Dow and Nasdaq suffer biggest point drops ever. What does it mean to us ? - Posted by JohnG

Posted by chris on April 15, 2000 at 09:39:31:


Have you counted how many posts you get asking if you are payed for this or work for this site? It’s got to be reaching the number of posts asking about the DOS by now. By the way, no need to leave everybody in the dark, just tell us what J.P. currently pays for posts. We won’t tell nobody.


Dow and Nasdaq suffer biggest point drops ever. What does it mean to us ? - Posted by JohnG

Posted by JohnG on April 14, 2000 at 21:29:32:

What a day and what a week.

The Dow dropped 617.78 to close at 10305.77 and the Nasdaq dropped 355.51 to close at 3321.27.

What does this mean for those of us in the world of real estate investment. Greenspan is hinting at interest rate increases again. Mortgages ?

Will this market activity have any impact on real estate ?
Will people take money out of the stock market and put it into real estate ? Or vice versa ? What about all that margin debt - its way up there.

Is this the beginning of the end as far as tech stocks or is it just the start of a “transformation” from the old economy into the new economy ?

Friday night thoughts welcome.

Re: Dow and Nasdaq suffer biggest point drops ever. What does it mean to us ? - Posted by Andy in Michigan

Posted by Andy in Michigan on April 15, 2000 at 21:23:09:

Couple of thoughts…

First: Unfortunately, I am still doing the J-O-B thing. I borrowed against my 401(k) to do my first, a 5-unit that gains me almost $1100/month. Not so sad I did that, with what has happened w/the markets this week. My co-workers always give me crap like…"my mutual funds don’t call me at 3 AM with their toilets being plugged up (mine don’t either, BTW). Question: Is it against some REI code to rub their noses in these horrible market days? There were 2 horrible days this week in the Dow & NASDAQ, and I collected rent on both of those days. I LOVE THIS GIG!!!

Second: I have somewhat of a mentor in this newsgroup as a whole. I bought Russ Whitney’s course (ripoff, IMHO). I have just purchased Carleton Sheets, and it is not yet here. I am ready to shed this prison life (I’m one of the good guys). I want to do REI full time (or enough to be VERY comfortable), and I don’t mind managing tenants/maintaining properties. The tax benefits are awesome here. Anyone care to give some suggestions on where do I go from here?

I plan on beginning to attend some seminars this year, and try to find a niche that gets me my 2 monetary goals: chunks of cash on sales or something, and a continuous cash flow from my rentals.

You folks are awesome! This country is great, and this game is spectacular!

I appreciate any and all input, and welcome e-mails.

Yours in $ucce$$,

This is better than Laurel & Hardy - Posted by Elliott Reldas

Posted by Elliott Reldas on April 15, 2000 at 08:38:42:

It means Robert Kiyosaki said this would happen! It means 401K plans are about to be wiped out! It means I am no part of that gamblers nightmare. I invest in real estate only! I could care less about NASDAQ! Why do you care so much about it? Stick with real estate and forget all that crap. I just don’t need all of the worry. It is so funny to watch those people 5hitting in their drawers


I don’t feel so bad now - Posted by Laure

Posted by Laure on April 15, 2000 at 07:54:57:

When my husband, and friends would brag about their “profits” in the stock market, I would just grin (and bear it)… feeling the bite of jealousy, not being in the market. Just stuck with my little ole houses, all my cash tied up in them… plugging along…day after day. Starting to wonder, geez, maybe this can go on forever…(not!)

So, Today, I am feeling quite happy. Just to have my little ole houses.

Some people say they don’t know how I deal with Tenants, houses, banks…etc. I’ll take my “deal” any day and they can have “their” stock market !

Laure :slight_smile:

Someone had asked about the stock drop and foreclosures/forced sales… - Posted by David

Posted by David on April 15, 2000 at 06:26:00:

the lag on the decline of tech stocks and the real estate market can be quite long. The rise in interest rates has a much more immediate effect. For every 1% rise in interest rates 1 million people can’t buy a house, a personal residence. This can be good for landlords as people stay in renting and don’t buy houses. In the early 1980’s when mortgage interest rates were 18% fewer people were able to buy, therfore the buyer who could buy commanded better prices and land contracts with lower interest rates. In 1982 I bought a house where the seller offered me a land contract at the BELOW market rate of 12%! We settled at 9% when the banks were charging 15-16%. Buyers were able to negotiate good prices since there wasn’t a lot of competition. And oh those HUD/VA repos were great then.
The lag time for stock decline and home foreclosures depends on your state laws. Here you have to be 4 to 6 months behind to go into foreclosure and that can take 6 months. Sales are only 4 times a year in my county and its easy to miss the date and have to wait until the next sale. Figure about a year. For tax sale you have to be 2.75 years delinquent before the sale. So IF the market continues to decline you’ll see some more foreclosures about July, 2001 and some more tax sales about Sept. 2002. I not holding my breath!
In an above post, "Its always a buyer’s market, if…"
I said you make your market good times or bad, high interest rates or low, stocks rising or stocks declining.

Re: Inflation and Interest rates - Posted by chris

Posted by chris on April 14, 2000 at 23:06:59:

Watching the news today I see that the FED will have to raise interest rates due to the market drop to control inflation through making the cost of money higher-mortgages included.

I have never attended an economics or finance course so I would appreciate an abridged explanation of why a market value drop causes inflation to increase(goods become more expensive).

-Thanks, Chris

For now… nada - Posted by ray@lcorn

Posted by ray@lcorn on April 14, 2000 at 22:57:33:

Timely topic… (and I just emailed JP an article I wrote on this very subject this afternoon… so it’s fresh in my mind. JP can you hurry up with the proofing? :slight_smile:

I pay little attention to the markets except in a broad, big picture way. I’ve found that it usually has little to do with my real estate, unless it displays a reaction to another, more pertinent event like war, political moves, and tax law changes.

In my opinion, the stock indices (Dow Jones Industrial Average [DJIA], NASDaq, S&P, etc.) reflect more of what has been rather than what is coming. We forget that the DJIA is made up of only thirty stocks out of over 6000 companies that are listed on the NYSE alone. Those thirty companies have changed considerably over the years, (Microsoft and Wal Mart were recent additions), and then their relative standing is altered by the daily “divisor” which itself is changed frequently, and is set by the DJIA executives. So if you added up the respective stock values of the current thirty industrials and try to gauge how much money was actually lost or made today, it would have little relation to the DJIA.

In fact, the Dow was not created as a bellwether of the economy. The media made it into that, because its a number and its different every day. Easy to report, and easy to get excited about. But the media know little about markets. They know about news. And if the Dow index is news, then they are going to push the he11 out of it. The Dow is nothing more than a means of tracking the ebb and flow of investment dollars in the market. That market doesn’t positively act, it can’t. It is a reflection of the composite actions taken across the globe by the companies whose stock it trades.

Moreover, while a 600 point drop sounds disasterous even if it was a meaningful number, it represents only 5% of the index at the present market valuation. In the smaller and more volatile NASDAQ, its ten percent drop is just another day at the office for all but the handful of probably bankrupt companies actually affected. While the media would like for us to believe that this one number, the Dow, holds our economic fate in the brink, I fail to see the import.

Look to our most recent “crash”. The 1987 drop was only 500 or so points, but represented about 20% or so of the then current market valuation. And the market gained back the loss by the end of the year in an economy just learning to deal with the 1986 tax law. That tax law did much more to affect the economy that year than Black Tuesday ever did. 75% of this nations wealth is in real estate, so when tax laws affecting that real estate changed it affected much more of the economy than the stock markets.

That being said, now I must state that there are ramifications to real estate from a volatile market, whether going up or down. Moves in the market of 15-20% or higher are cause to pay attention, something big is happening. But it is not the market making the event. It is the market responding to an event.

Money doesn’t care who owns it, but it hates instability or uncertainty. Given a choice, money will choose a safe harbor in a storm. So when markets get wild, or war breaks out, or a country like Russia falls apart, money will flee to the safe havens until the storm dies down. This is where it starts to affect us in real estate.

In our current world, one of the safest investments anywhere is arguably the US T-Bill, aka Treasury Bonds. At some point in any chaotic or crisis event such as the Asian meltdown in 1998, large chunks of money will begin to move to safety. As that happens, bond prices will rise and their yields will fall. Most of our large mortgage markets are tied to the price and yields of T-Bills, often quoted as a “spread” over a certain termed T-Bill. As those bond prices rise, mortgage money begins to cost more. That affects real estate. In the most dramatic of scenarios, a rising rate environment is good to rental housing and bad to home sales. So you have to pick which sector of the market to play when the conditions are right for that sector.

Given what has to happen to really move rates by forces out of our control, I don’t think much of a 5% drop in the Dow. Nor does the tech stock flame out bother my properties or my sleeping habits. In my estimation most of those stocks have been very overvalued for a very long time.

On a local level, and remember folks, ALL real estate is local, I don’t expect any changes except that there may be some extra money looking for a safe home next week. If you have a cash investor network that you work with regularly, then you may get a call wanting to place some funds next week. If you’re ready, then you’ve already got a place to put it to work for it’s owners. If you’re not ready, why aren’t you? If you can create a stable, low risk, investment secured by real estate with a decent return for an investor, then why would he have to play markets unless he just doesn’t know about you?

Do you think there might be some money to be made here?

my two cents,


Remember this… - Posted by Paul_NY

Posted by Paul_NY on April 14, 2000 at 22:54:28:

Real estate is always the last to go and the first to come back.

Re: Dow and Nasdaq suffer biggest point drops ever. What does it mean to us ? - Posted by Ben (NJ)

Posted by Ben (NJ) on April 14, 2000 at 21:46:55:

They say second homes are the first casualty. Vacation homes,shore property and I imagine heavily mortgaged property will hit the market at a rapid pace leading to more inventory and therefore less of a seller’s market. End result, more foreclosures, more motivated sellers.

Re: Dow and Nasdaq suffer biggest point drops ever. What does it mean to us ? - Posted by Warner(ATL)

Posted by Warner(ATL) on April 14, 2000 at 21:38:26:


As I mentioned in a thread earlier, I am zeroing in on those interest rates because every increase in rates equals an increase in motivated sellers and buyers.

Ripple effects… - Posted by Matthew Chan

Posted by Matthew Chan on April 15, 2000 at 13:11:49:

I certainly won’t go “toe to toe” with you on discussions on the specific instruments of the economy because, quite frankly, I am not qualified.

However, I will offer anecdotal evidence and comments based on my own personal experiences and travel in another professsional life not long ago…

There is a “wealth effect” (perception is reality) that the media has reported on. Many people that work within the high-tech industries are very smart people intellectually but what you might call mentally challenged in a financial sense… They are the typical Kiyosaki case study outlined in his books.

All many of them know is stock options, mutual funds, and acquiring lots of toys. They make tons of money but spend most or pour into stock options. In fact they obsess over it and look at it everyday. I have seen this personally myself internally at a very well-known software company that produces PC operating systems (hint, hint). I saw an article recently that discusses their obsession with the stock market and their productivity and how it may result in less employee retention due to evaporating stock worth. With some of their portfolio evaporating, it DOES make an impact on them because that is primarily what they have in terms of “wealth”. Their retirements ride on it too. These market changes do impact them in the here and now and they are able to make quick decisions to change employers and move if they want to.

How does this affect the real estate market? I would say there may be some local disturbances (opportunities) in the Silicon Valley, Seattle, and other markets where there is abnormally high concentrations of technology workers where they frequently pay top dollar for property and dependent on stock options for their wealth. And they are willing to take a relatively low salary to boot so they can participate in these positions. (Read: High lifestyle because of perception of wealth with little or no cashflow except for their tax-heavy W-2 paychecks.)

And the people who don’t have the emotional fortitude to withstand such market changes such as many day-traders or speculators who rely heavy on margins, the impact is swift as they scramble to cover those margins.

Overall, I believe there are swift effects in certain segements and concentrations of people because of margin calls and the “wealth effect” that could ripple in a positive way for investors in the real estate markets where there are many high-tech industries.

As a nation, I agree with you, not a lot of immediate effect. But there are ripple effects which, in some areas, will be more sensitive to it than others.

Re: For now… nada - Posted by JPiper

Posted by JPiper on April 15, 2000 at 01:38:26:

Hi Ray:

I find myself disagreeing with many of the ?stock market comments? contained in your post.

You say as an example: ?the stock indices (Dow Jones Industrial Average [DJIA], NASDaq, S&P, etc.) reflect more of what has been rather than what is coming.? It is worth pointing out that the Leading Index of Economic Indicators, an index comprised of 11 (I believe) indicators intended to forecast the coming economic conditions, contains amongst other things the S&P 500 index. It?s there for a reason. Stock prices in general are thought by most knowledgeable market professionals to ANTICIPATE, rather than REFLECT. Whether the Dow Jones Industrials do a good job of this is a good question, inasmuch as it is a price-weighted index, and therefore unduly influenced by higher priced stocks comprising the index. But even there, there are 3 Dow Jones Averages (industrials, transportations, and utilities), which when analyzed together form the body of the Dow Jones Theory, a theory by the way that doesn?t have a poor forecasting record at all. Either way, the capitalization-weighted S&P500 is part of the leading economic indicators, and as such is one of the indicators that most economists look at when attempting to forecast the probable future course of the economy.

I think you?re right about the media. The media has made the Dow Jones Average into a news event. When the media speaks about the Dow Jones, they generally link it?s rise and fall to news events. Today as an example the fall is contributed to the consumer price index. This appears to be where you buy into the media?s portrayal, but you would be well-served to re-think this one. There?s an old saying in the market?.buy on the rumor, sell on the news, or vice versa (in other words, the game is to anticipate future events). A study of some of the factors that go into the inflation rate (ie. money supply growth, another leading economic indicator) foreshadowed increasing inflation many months ago. There was a time when those active in the markets held their breath before the weekly release of these money supply statistics. They?ve since been forgotten in favor of other things. But Milton Friedman as an example, of the Chicago School of Economics, believes that money supply is the main game. In any case, people who might have been concerned about rising inflation, rather than chasing the latest internet stock, could have easily been out of the stock market months ago when they observed the huge money supply increases beginning last fall. My point is that the smart money players look ahead, just as you do in your real estate investments. They don?t all sell upon the release of a particular news event. This is left for the ?shoe clerks? so to speak, or the less knowledgeable. Probably one of the best examples of forecasting in modern times is the stock market performance since 1987, perhaps forecasting one of the golden economic periods of this century. This year, the vast majority of stocks have been declining, a sort of stealth bear market if you will?.the Dow Jones is just now beginning to reflect this underlying weakening condition.

To believe that the 1987 stock market plunge was a ?reflection? of the 1986 tax law changes is at a minimum a revision of well chronicled history. I see my post is already becoming much too long, so I?ll leave it to you to read about the period?.but it had little to do with tax law changes.

Your comments on T-Bills and T-Bonds I think left something to be desired as well. I would agree that adjustable rate mortgages are indexed at times to T-Bills, or other short term indexes like LIBOR, or perhaps a federal reserve district cost of funds. Mortgage rates (long term rates) however are not a function of T-Bill rates (short term rates) necessarily except to the extent that they are indexed existing mortgages. Mortgage rates tend to trade more in line with other long-term rates such as T-Bonds. T-Bill rates tend to be reflective of federal reserve action. T-Bond rates tend to be reflect the market?s perception of the future prospects for inflation?amongst other things. In the recent past, what we see is Federal Reserve action to move rates up to cope with a perception of possible rising inflation (the news of which was just announced today), coupled with softening long term rates as the players in that arena respond to the idea that Federal Reserve policy of increasing short term rates will eventually cause a business slowdown and therefore effectively cope with increasing inflation. In fact, in the recent past we have had an inverted yield curve (short term rates higher than long term rates?another leading economic indicator). This indicator has a great track record in forecasting recession?although not perfect.

What does all of this have to do with real estate? Certainly if you were located in New York City, you would be foolish to not believe that the market influences real estate prices. But this stock market, which I will call a bubble, with people chasing stocks without regard to underlying value, I think WILL create imbalances in the real estate markets WHEN and IF it truly collapses. Many people have not seen an old-fashioned bear market?.but when and if we experience one (and there?s no reason to believe that we won?t at some point) it will probably be at least in part the markets way of wringing many of the excesses that have built up in our economy today. By this I mean, record margin debt in stocks, buying stocks with a credit card, taking out second mortgages to play the market, 125% mortgages, lending practices that include high risk loans to problem people, 100% financing, etc etc etc.

I learned a long time ago that forecasting markets is a tough business. But my opinion is that when and if the stock market undergoes a bear market ( one that lasts more than a couple of weeks) that it will definitely influence lenders, and therefore ALL real estate markets. The vast numbers of new participants in the markets, the huge increase in assets exposed to the stock market, will definitely cause ripples in every area of our lives when the stock market undergoes a bear market. The result will be credit tightening, a tightening of credit standards. I would be very reluctant to believe that the real estate market will remain untouched. And for those of you rooting for this, I understand where you?re coming from?.but the nature of that resulting market will be one where it?s easy to buy, hard to sell?.just the reverse of today (hard to buy, easy to sell). You?ll need to learn how to play a different game.


Re: For now… nada - Posted by T Jent

Posted by T Jent on April 15, 2000 at 24:23:31:

Ray, thanks for an article both interesting and informative.

I recently attended a real estate symposium at the UCLA Anderson buisness school where one of the speakers predicted that as the stock market began to grow more unstable and risky the RE market may rise as more people saw property as a comparatively stable investment. Plus, it seems to me there are a lot of people flush with stock market income who might be looking for a good tax shelter. Not to mention that if the market finally starts to settle down Greenspan will lay off the interest rates.

These latest vagaries of the market may bode well for real estate…and they also remind me I’m glad that’s where I’ve been putting most of my money.

Re: Ripple effects… - Posted by David Alexander

Posted by David Alexander on April 15, 2000 at 13:41:10:

I once had a freind that was creating businesses, buying RE and was moving to Dallas to start another company. He asked where the money was in the Dallas Area,( He was needing to raise capital, had 2 mil in liquid, but wasnt using his money, just wish I had paid more attention to him then). Anyway, I said in mainly two places, Plano and Highland Park. He researched both and said he would move to Highland Park, I said well there is probably more money in Plano, and he replied that’s “New Money”.

Plano is where people have the high paying jobs, great stock portfolios etc. Highland Park is the people with their money in Cash Producing Assets.

Anyway it has helped me to understand the difference between old money and new money. New Money will come and go, old money will be here forever and grow.

David Alexander

Re: For now… nada - Posted by ray@lcorn

Posted by ray@lcorn on April 15, 2000 at 12:26:18:


I knew when I wrote that last night that there were holes in it that you would most likely fill! Thanks for a great response and a very insightful post of your own.

Allow me a few clarifications… it was late last night and I know I glossed over some fairly significant points in the hopes of making a point regarding the connection (or lack of) between the stock market and real estate.

First, I did not mean to infer that the 1987 market crash was reflective of tax law changes. What I meant to convey was that the '86 tax law change had much more effect on real estate than the October '87 crash. Forgive me if I gave the impression the two were connected.

I did a poor job of distinguishing between TBills and TBonds, and as I reread my post I see that I made a leap in thought without providing my work, so to speak. You most ably corrected and filled in the gaps I left between the connections between long term bonds and mortgage rates. But my point about bonds being the investment of choice in volatile periods stands. And as more money moves into bonds, those prices rise, as do any mortgage funds tied to them.

The inverted yield curve IS an indicator of the volatility in the market, among other things, and I agree is is one of the better leading indicators. In my book, any measure of the relative cost of money is indicative of where we are and where we may be headed. As you may guess, I was taught the Freidman theory, and I still believe it today. To me, the money supply is everything. That inflation, interest rates and economic activity as a whole are directly related to the money supply cannot be disputed. And as those factors affect business equities, then the equity (stock) market REacts in a collective estimation and measure of the risk involved to the companies in question. How these things interelate, and what they mean is the food for many a debate. There is good reason for Economics to be called the “Dismal Science”.

As to mortgages and how they are affected by market swings, things are bit more complicated now with the steady growth of Mortgage Backed Securities. While only comprising about 10-15% of the total market, the investment in MBS carries a heavy proportional weight in mortgage pricing. On the retail side, (that’s us) our mortgages are priced as a “spread” over the yield of a specific bond, whether we are aware of it or not. In 1998 we saw exactly what happens when money flees to T-Bonds. As the prices rise, the yields drop, and the mortgage bundles in the pipeline became victims of negative arbitrage. This broke Nomura, and almost tanked several Wall Street houses. The result is that spreads must be adjusted quickly to avoid a bloodbath, and that affects our business in a very real way. Mortgage pricing of any loan that is to be sold from the orginator is controlled by this market. So it follows that if chaos hits the market, pricing will suffer. So far, that is not the case in such an event as this weeks price slide in equities.

I do not buy into the media’s premise that the CPI drove the correction. In fact I offered no reason for the slide, and still don’t. Is it just a correction? Or is it a signal of a Bear market? I don’t know. I decided a long time ago that I do not want to make my career in playing the stock market. There are at least 100,000 people in NYC alone that study, track and engage in trading stocks on a daily basis, and I am not willing to do what it takes to try and outthink them. My game is Real Estate, and I daresay that put one of those stockbrokers up against me in a real estate deal, and I will win the game.

In spite of the market slide, the fundamentals that drive real estate are still solid. Employment, wage rates, job creation, durable good sales, all remain solid. Wages are rising a bit on the high side of normal, but it goes hand in hand with job creation. The rise in the CPI was fueled (pun intended) mostly by the price of oil. And on that particular indicator, the media and the government were asleep at the wheel. We in the hotel business sounded the alarm over rising fuel prices as early as November. In late January or early February OPEC announced it would increase production at the spring meeting in Geneva. The government and the media bandwagon started up in March, and their belated and erroneous rhetoric actually made it more difficult for OPEC to do what they had already agreed to do lest they be seen as caving to the demands of the US. Touchy stuff, and the US gov’t deserves no credit whatsoever. But I do not buy for a minute that 100,000 stockbrokers and pension fund managers read the 0.5% increase in the CPI this week and decided to sell their stocks. No way.

As to the federal reserve and its tightening, I tend to side with the fans of Greenspan. Regulating the flow of money through our economy is a ticklish job, and it seems that so far this fed policy has worked. I disagreed with the last tightening in 1996(?)(not sure of the exact year), but it proved to be the right move. Going back to the money supply as a key force in the economy, we know that as the price rises, demand will slow, and the “cooling off” should prevent rampant price escalations (inflation). Its beyond me, but as it relates to my real estate investment I see no cause for alarm.

BTW, I just read a book by a guy that predicts a 35,000 Dow by the year 2010. So to call this week the beginnings of a bear market is a bit premature for me!

Thanks for your post, Jim. I always enjoy trading thoughts with you. Tell Concetta I said HI!


Hello, ‘THANKS PIPE’ - Posted by Stanley L

Posted by Stanley L on April 15, 2000 at 08:31:14:

I noticed you post real lenghtly replys to people. You either have lots of time on your hands or you are working for a salary to post such information. Just curious, do you work for this website? Can I get a job here like yours? Are these all your opinions or do you type from a written script?

Now don’t take this the wrong way Pipe, I really like your postings and gain much information from them, I am just betting that you are either an employee of this site or a shareholder.

Am I correct in seeing things the way I do? Thanks for all your great post! You are educating us for free.


Stanley L

Re: Ripple effects… - Posted by Eric C

Posted by Eric C on April 18, 2000 at 24:53:50:

Hi David -

Your comment is so very true.

Capital grows(and flows to)where it is wanted and well treated. Hard, but simple.


Eric C

Re: Hello, ‘THANKS PIPE’ - Posted by phil fernandez

Posted by phil fernandez on April 15, 2000 at 20:33:19:


Let’s see. I’ve been doing some real serious research here concerning your concern.

Let’s assume, as you seem to like to assume things, that " Pipe " gets 2 and a half cents for each of his posts. Now as I said, I’ve been researching this for you.

According to the CREOnline archives Pipe has responded in Nov. 1999, 133 times, in Dec. 1999, 151 times and in Jan 2000 a whooping 267 times.

So at 2.5 cents for each response Jim made $3.32 in Nov.

$3.77 in Dec. and $6.67 in Jan. 2000.

Stan do you see a trend here. I do. Pipe is working harder each and every month. Thank god he gets paid.

Some people just don’t get the picture - and probably never will - Posted by JohnG

Posted by JohnG on April 15, 2000 at 17:45:46:

I cannot imagine what you are thinking when you question the basis of the valuable contributions to this site by JPiper.

What you fail to grasp is that JPiper has said that he gets as much or more from the process of replying to posts as the receipient.
Those who work for a living never understand that it is by giving and giving and going way way beyond the extra mile that builds real success and yes, even material wealth. If people could only forget about who gets the credit and just go out and do the job and do it well, then they would realize that therein lies the secret of success.

Many people used to give me heck for coming in early and staying late and making sure the job got done. Now, they wonder why they are stuck in the same rut they have always been in and I get to live a life of freedom and I answer only to myself.

One day, my friend, maybe you too will learn this lesson. But I won’t hold my breath.