Please welcome George Jetson with a story of deferred value… published almost a year after it was turned in! I always get around to things eventually! — jb
I don’t recall becoming out of touch with today’s culture (or what passes as such). It just happened. You can tell I’m out of touch by that parenthetical thought — because I am out of touch, I am compelled to comment on being out of touch and the implied terrible state of today, rather than be immersed in it and accept it. But even though I am myself a lost cause, it doesn’t mean I can’t benefit from the world as it is today.
My secret weapon in maintaining contact with reality is cohabitating teenagers, also known as children. They ARE in touch. One of them is what’s known as a “hypebeast”, and knows terms like “colorway”, ”OGs”, “size run”, etc. He’s been at this for two years, ever since we took a walk along Fairfax Ave in Los Angeles and visited Golf Wang and Supreme. I became familiar with “reselling.”
I have invested capital into his business ventures, and he has turned some tidy profits, AND most importantly, some of these profits have even made their way back to my accounts. All in all, this has been an educational and fun experience for us all, while simultaneously I shake my head at the culture that values clothing in these ways.
To be fair, I recognize that the homonymous author of this site regularly speaks of clothing, shoes, and any number of ostentatious, possibly veblen goods which have little basis in reality, so the hypewear world of which I speak is only the latest incarnation of this situation which applies to gen-whatever instead of gen-whatever came previously.
But, back to our story, the 35-year payoff. As it turns out, the worlds of my son and me collided in a complementary way recently, when I produced from the vast underground storage facility (aka my basement) a pair of OG (that’s original to you and me) white/natural Jordan 1 high tops from 1985. I bought these things with my mom at the mall when I was a 15 year old looking to improve my game heading into my sophomore season.
And lo, because I received the hoarder gene from said mom, I managed to hang onto these shoes for the 34 years after my game was elevated immensely through their application (honest, it was). A few times in the past couple of years, I mentioned that I’d like to test the market for them, as I slowly became aware they might be worth something. But with the renewed interest in Michael Jordan in recent months, with “The Last Dance” being released, and discussed, and re-discussed, it appeared to me, the slowest of slow on the uptake of most things trendy, that it was time to sell ‘em for real.
My son formed a marketing plan, which is to say he put them on his Insta with an advertised price of $6666. I understand he has enough of a following that he didn’t need to use Grailed or Stockx, and we’d save commission, with people invited to make offers. And so a bidding war erupted, going from $500 to the final, surprising price of …
But before that, I should mention that on the morning after the money transferred, Nike announced that they’d finally be dropping the retro version of the same shoe, same colorway, some time in 2021. This doesn’t mean I sold at exactly the right time, because crazy buyers still want OGs, but it didn’t hurt either.
And so, my 35-year-old Jordans sold for $2000.
$2000 isn’t life-changing in any way to a 49-year-old with a reasonable ability to generate income. But it adds amusement to a life which in recent months has been a bit more subdued. And it gives me ammunition for my battles against the anti-hoarding forces in my life. And it gives me a story to tell, direct from my brush with the hypebeast scene. As for the money itself, I will probably buy one of those black stainless steel refrigerators with the little see-thru refreshment door for the vast underground storage facility (aka teenager entertainment zone), if I were the type of person who earmarks found money in such a way.
P.S. — if anyone wants to make an easy $800 in 2021, keep an eye out for the Air Jordan 1 ’85 Neutral Grey drop. Son says retail will be $200, and they will instantly resell for $1000. You heard it here first.
(Editor’s note: I published this too late for any of you to use this tip, but even after the frenzy they are still pulling $500!)