What My Ithaca Travel Nightmare Has to Do with EA Call Options

The Mintz family recently had a travel nightmare for the ages. My horrible story is long, but well worth the read.

The plan was to travel from North Carolina to Ithaca, New York for my cousin’s wedding. And because I’m a conservative traveler, when booking the flights I had baked in plenty of time for weather or plane issues. Unfortunately nothing could have prepared me for what came next.

As the Uber pulled up to my house to drive us to the airport a torrential rain storm began. Being the great dad that I am I walked each member of my family to the car under an umbrella. Then it was my turn, and because I couldn’t bring a water-logged umbrella into the car, I made an uncovered run for it. Needless to say I got absolutely soaked and traveled the rest of the day water-logged.

Just as we cleared airport security my phone buzzed. The first flight was delayed an hour. That was fine as we had a three-hour layover in Philadelphia, so we sat down for lunch.

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Another text message came shortly after, alerting me to a two-hour delay. Again this was fine and my wife and daughter went to get their nails done at the airport salon.

The third message said a three-hour delay. At this point we were certain to miss our plane, which was the last flight to Ithaca that night!

Regardless, my wife and I decided to fly to Philadelphia and figure it out once we landed.

Great news!! When we landed in Philadelphia and I turned my phone on I had received a notice that the flight to Ithaca was delayed an hour. We’re going to make it! We sprint through the airport to the gate and get there just in time … for the next text message notifying me that the Ithaca flight was cancelled!! My kids learned a couple new swear words in that moment. Little did I know the fun was just beginning.

The next text message alerted me to potential flight options. As of 6:30 p.m. that Friday, the next flight to Ithaca wasn’t until Sunday, at 8 p.m.!!! Kids, cover your ears!

At this point we decided we had no choice but to rent a car and drive the five and a half hours from Philadelphia to Ithaca.

So we hopped on our cell phones and tried to book a rental car. There was nothing reasonable to rent as the Philadelphia airport had been shut down for a couple hours due to nasty weather and others had rented nearly all of the cars ahead of us. The best we could do for a rental car was pay $1,200 for a three-day rental (we only needed one).

After another round of words that would make a sailor blush I reluctantly paid the money and hopped in the rental car for the drive to Ithaca.

As we approached the checkout of the rental-car facility the woman worker waved the car in front of us through, and the arm blocking cars from departing rose up, and the metal barrier lowered. Away drove that car.

I gave the woman the mileage on the odometer and the paper work, she said have a safe trip, and waved us through. Except for one thing …

As I pulled the car forward the lowered metal barrier raised up underneath us, pushing the front of our car two feet in the air. At that point the arm came crashing down on the hood. My kids were freaking out! They got even louder when the barriers dropped us back down, and then raised us up again as the arm bashed back down on the hood again.

The worker is also freaking out, screaming at the top of her lungs, “There’s a baby in the car! Help!” (Note: Neither of my kids are babies, but they certainly were screaming like newborns.)

At this point my wife and I were giggling uncontrollably. What else could go wrong?!!

Finally, order was restored, we got a new car, and were on our way. Naturally, just as we were leaving the next round of torrential rain began. For the next six and a half hours I drove 25 miles an hour white-knuckling the steering wheel in an attempt to keep the car between my lane lines.

At around 2 a.m. that night we arrived and went to bed.

The next morning we had to get up early and get to the wedding. As my wife was exhaustedly eating her yogurt she took a wrong step and fell backward down the stairs, spilling her breakfast yogurt all over her wedding clothes.

Aside from that … the weekend was fantastic! The wedding was beautiful and my family had a wonderful time. It really was worth the 18 hours of travel hell.

So what has this to do with investing?

Like life, sometimes your investing plans go sideways FAST.

For example, in August I recommended two trades: one that I liked (Pfizer (PFE)), and one that I LOVED (Electronic Arts (EA)). My plan was to hit a single or a double in slow-moving PFE, and hit a grand slam in EA.

The reason I loved EA, and expected to make a killing in a call position, was because day after day a big trader bought ultra-aggressive bullish options positions in the stock. It was my dream setup!

What happened next? A couple weeks later the company pushed back the release of a video game and warned on earnings. The stock tanked, we sold out of our position, and took a loss.

The trade that I liked and had hoped to make 25% to 50% in was in PFE. And how is that trade performing? Right now the calls I recommended to my Cabot Options Trader subscribers could be sold for a profit of approximately 150%. But I’m not selling, as the stock and option action is pointing to higher prices.

Life, travel and trading are rarely going to go as planned. But that doesn’t mean that they won’t yield stories (and trades) of a lifetime.

Jacob Mintz

Quick Profits, Controlled Risk

Jacob Mintz is a professional options trader and Chief Analyst of Cabot Options Trader. He uses calls, puts and covered calls to guide investors to quick profits while always controlling risk. Beginners and experts alike can gain from following Jacob’s advice.

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