Land America Financial

Midway through the great ’08 crisis,

I decided to take my stand.

Allured by the prospect of big return,

I barreled into the financial named Land.


A title insurer – 

Now that’s a simple business.

It’s really just paper pushing,

This sector is not a mess!


And a #2 market share to boot

I exclaimed with confidence.

TI is headed towards a Coke and Pepsi.

On paper, it made so much sense.


Alas, the best laid paper plans

Do sometimes go awry.

And when the warning signals appear,

It is best to be spry.


Some employees were to leave the office

As working from home would save money.

A desparate attempt to keep the cash pile

Was really a sad joke, not funny.


Truthfully, the warning signs were there

All along.

Acquisition addiction plus offices in Argentina

Should have sounded my gong.


We are left to ask:

Is there a lesson learned?

Try this: when cheap and contrarian

Meet crisis and overaggressive,

All discounts to book value will be burned.