Home > General, Markets > Forrest Gump meets Nassim Taleb

Forrest Gump meets Nassim Taleb

March 2, 2009

Rocky and Trophy Wife went shopping at CVS/Pharmacy last night. While Trophy Wife picked up some nail polish, Rocky headed to the “90%-off Valentines Day Candy” Department, where he bought several heart-shaped Whitman’s Samplers. When they arrived home, Rocky handed a box of the chocolates to Trophy Wife, and told her that he loved her.

Unamused, Trophy Wife remarked that Forrest Gump never said that “Life is like a box of expired chocolates.”

Rocky countered that the expiration sticker read “May, 2009.”

After examining the Whitman Sampler ad (see below), Rocky observed that his (discounted) chocolate price is unchanged from 1942 . In 1942, the Dow Jones Industrial Average’s index level was 150. He wondered aloud whether he should go long more chocolate and short the Dow Jones (as an arbitrage).

After biting into a stale caramel, Rocky decided it was a bad trade: the Whitman’s price was a black swan — (or more precisely, a black chocolate.) The right trade: Nibble at more stocks, and throw out those chocolates!


  1. allocator
    March 2, 2009 at 11:00 pm


    You bought your wife Valentine’s Day chocolates after Valentine’s Day, from the discount bin? I’m glad now I didn’t make that 550 S&P bet! 🙂


  2. d@
    March 15, 2009 at 1:50 pm

    sucker rally is just about done.

  3. March 16, 2009 at 7:41 am

    to “D@” :
    The post above is about chocolates. Not lollipops or “suckers”….

  4. April 16, 2009 at 11:10 pm

    Rocky should have moved past the expired chocolates and bought the nail polish remover instead. This would give Trophy wife the impression that he is observant and coordinating his affairs with hers.
    Once they got home he should have convinced Trophy wife that she is beautiful without enhancement, that she should skip the nail polish.
    Rocky and Trophy could enjoy the evening sniffing the nail polish remover and get so wrecked that it wouldn’t matter what investment strategy they used. This would be more the kind of move we could expect from Nassim, always a practical man with an eye out for the unexpected…

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