Monday, December 3, 2007

The one that got away might be coming back to pick me up.



Everybody's got their own version of the story, right? HOG is mine.

It was 1988. I was a long-time rider of British and Japanese and sometimes Italian road bikes. Almost bought an old St.Pete Police Harley while in high school. But passed. Oil leaks and parts flying off was a problem I didn't need. But then I got a whiff of what was happening at HD with the family buyback, the revolutionary (at that time) 883 motor, and the unheard of 12-month full-price buy-back guarantee. And finally --the tipping point-- all the Hollywood pretty boys were showing up on the PCH astride Hogs. It was that fabled Tsunami in the making. I knew it. Or I could smell it, anyway.

The share price at that time was way down there under the rear tire of Evel's HD flat tracker-turned-flying-machine (We'll miss you, Evel).

But, of course, at that time I was fully engaged in the ad biz, not investing on my own. And my financial "advisor" at the time talked us out of it. Said, it was a lousy company with no track record of success and, having just left AMF, was too big a risk. He steered us into what he saw as the real future: Employee Drug Testing firms. And we bough it. Ack.

The rest is sad, sad, sad, tragic, rumbling history. But what goes around comes around. I learned a valuable lesson about listening to and honoring your inner advisor. I'll most likely get back on Harley after the first of the year. And if Karma is who I think she is, that "advisor" is probably doing time somewhere having failed a random drug test. Wait. I take that back. Hopefully he's just someplace doing no harm. Maybe fishing. With worms.

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