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Dykstra: Calling On Applied Materials

The tech company's April options should compute.

Apple (AAPL) - Get Report reported stellar earnings after the bell Monday, the same day my column stressed the strength demonstrated by the tech stalwarts this year.

That strength was highlighted by yesterday's pick,


(INTC) - Get Report

, which raised guidance, citing a growing PC market. Apple clearly wasn't going to disappoint. With these earnings in, I would like to focus on the tech sector again.

I last wrote about

Applied Materials

(AMAT) - Get Report

June 11. The company makes key components for semiconductors used in computers, flat panel displays and solar photovoltaic cells.

The optimism out of Intel, strong flat-panel TV sales and this year's boom in solar power make this company an excellent DITM play-- the solar boom and the resurgent chip market make Applied Materials a growth stock once again.

The company recently unveiled a new solar power product: a thin-film silicon panel that has the potential to make solar power more economically viable. While the solar component of the company has yet to account for a major portion of the company's $9.89 billion in revenue, it holds the potential for exponential growth in the not-too-distant future.

Additionally, the company's global presence helps boost its revenue in the face of a weak dollar.

I have placed heavy emphasis on this factor lately, and with rumors of the


TST Recommends

mulling additional rate cuts, increased weakness in the dollar is very possible. Look for Applied Materials to benefit either way, with its resurgent growth and strong global revenue base. I will place a limit order to buy 10 April 15 calls (ANQDC) for $5.90 or better. The stock closed Monday at $20.46.

Game of Life

As humans, we want what we don't have. In this hierarchy of wants and needs, distinguishing between the two often becomes difficult. When desire reaches a certain point, the individual may perceive this want as a need. The nature of such ambitious character results in the way of life we experience today. Every action or object can potentially be improved to be made more efficient.

First it was the automobile, but what happens if you're thirsty while driving? So the cup-holder came into play, but what happens if you're thirsty for a cold drink while driving?

This led to the invention of a cooler-like structure in the center compartment to store cold drinks while en route to your next location. Next, we may install heaters to keep hot drinks warm. Who wants lukewarm coffee anyway?

This can become an obsession, like the 60 year-old Malaysian farmer who kidnapped a 28 year-old Malaysian estate worker when she turned down his proposal to be his wife. Fortunately, the woman's friend witnessed the kidnapping and contacted police.

The police proceeded to contact the man's family to try and convince him to free the innocent woman. At this point, the man released the woman unharmed.

For those of us who resort to less extreme measures to get what we want, there always seems to be that one thing that is completely unattainable. Perhaps it's a love interest, or even a life goal, whereupon we find ourselves striving to obtain something regardless of our knowledge of its unfeasibility.

Our impulses indicate to us that we need whatever we are fighting for. In reality, however, these "needs" are, more likely than not, simply wants that successfully take over our conscience and motivation.

Just as the nature of our character is to be ambitious, the biological world around us responds to our ever-changing ways much more slowly. For this reason, it is important to appreciate what you have, without constantly demanding more.

It's unreasonable to expect us to be completely stoic individuals, but taming our often excessive desires seems somewhat practical, right? Have the rationality to know what is appropriate and the patience to live in the present, without constantly looking to what is better in the future.

The Players Club realized the frustration of wanting what you cannot have. By guaranteeing recurring cash flow to professional athletes through our strategic partner, we provide the capital for professional athletes' futures that may otherwise be unattainable.

Always remember: Life is a journey; enjoy the ride!

At the time of publication, Dykstra had no positions in stocks mentioned.

Nicknamed 'Nails' for his tough style of play, Lenny is a former Major League Baseball player for the 1986 World Champions, New York Mets and the 1993 National League Champions, Philadelphia Phillies. A three time All-Star as a ballplayer, Lenny now serves as president for several privately held businesses in Southern California. He is the founder of The Players Club; it has been his desire to give back to the sport that gave him early successes in life by teaching athletes how to invest and protect their incomes. He currently manages his own portfolio and writes an investment strategy column for, and is featured regularly on CNBC and other cable news shows. Lenny was selected as OverTime Magazine's 2006-2007 "Entrepreneur of the Year."