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Desc:Blowing the kids' college fund on Beanie Babies
Tags:Addiction, hoarding, beanie babies, fads, hoarder
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Comment count is 39
grimcity - 2011-06-22
I knew they were a craze a while back, but I had no clue they were traded and had those kinds of values... I used to collect action figures and can relate to wanting a complete set of something, but I've never seen anything like this!

Was there some sort of Beanie Baby bubble burst or something? His expensive ones aren't worth anything?
Cena_mark - 2011-06-22
The collectors values were highly inflated. I remember telling my mom how bogus the so called values were. Eventually the demand fell through and now you can find a million beenie babies at your local Good Will for a buck.

Spit Spingola - 2011-06-22
Beanie Babies certainly don't display that well. They're fun to hold but most of them just look like lumpy pieces of cloth on a shelf.

I wonder if you could pull off a scam like Beanie Babies today. The internet and ebay crushed the value of a lot of collector's things and the economy has exacerbated that.

misterbuns - 2011-06-22
'fun to hold.'

Old_Zircon - 2011-06-22
Yeah, "collectables" as an investment kind of lost much of its legitimacy by the early 90s when everything started to be marketed that way.

Old_Zircon - 2011-06-22
Spit Spignola, in the record world at least the Internet has pushed the value of a lot of stuff unrealistically HIGH. I've seen records selling consistently on eBay for 0-0 the same week that I've seen the same pressings of the same records in the same condition for under at two or three different record shops. It's really not that uncommon.

On the other hand, I've also sold beat up records through stores for twice as much as a clean copy of the same thing was going for online at that time. It's kind of inconsistent.

Fake-collectible "limited edition" stuff has definitely been hurt by the web, though (which is good).

Spit Spingola - 2011-06-22
I really think the tactile feel of them was a lot of the appeal, like why bean bag chairs are popular but that may just be the autism talking.

I was thinking of the video game collectibles. I used to collect old video games and a lot of it crested in the early 00's and then went down in value except for super rare stuff like Stadium Events.

baleen - 2011-06-22
Cena, Beanie Babies are the gold standard for conservative moms. You should know that.

sosage - 2011-06-22
Video Games were on the up briefly in 09-ish. Those con artists that rate and enclose baseball cards/comics in plastic cases were getting into it around then, helping artificially inflate prices by sealing up common crap like Super Mario Bros. and Mike Tyson Punch Outs with ridiculous price tags. I have no idea if that is still going on. I dropped out after that.

"Part of it as an investment for the kids". WTF? Five for depressing.

Evilhead - 2011-06-22
I don't think something is a completely worthless investment if it at least has a use or some kind of intrinsic value. Records or video games can at least be listened to or played and there will always be some kind of market for that sort of thing. Especially as games and music move towards being completely digital, I think records and game cartridges will be fascinating relics for the latex wearing spacemen of the future. But useless objects with inflated values such as baseball cards and beanie babies will simply become fuel for the earthbound slaves gathered around oil barrel fires.

Hay Belly - 2011-06-22
"I wonder if you could pull off a scam like Beanie Babies today."

Mixed-breed mutts being sold for more than AKC registerable puppies.

snothouse - 2011-06-22
Chris Cooper IS the Beanie Man.
kwash - 2011-06-22
Interesting that is was filmed by his son, I believe. It adds an interesting context to the interviews with the father.

Also, that dad seems like he's pretty in denial over typical hoarding behavior.
StanleyPain - 2011-06-22
This shit still goes on, but now it's Webkins which are basically the same thing, only you get web codes that let you get a little animated gif on some website all Pokemon style and uh....that's about it.
Jack Dalton - 2011-06-22
Yeah... I remember my own sort of Beanie Baby compulsion, it was called baseball and basketball cards... I mean, there were literally books (such as Becket) that gave you an analysis for the value of specific cards on a monthly basis-- like whether your Stacey Augmon "Masters of Slam" insert increased in value by $.10.

Sidenote: I have the complete Upper Deck Michael Jordan baseball card collection-- although not particularly valuable, it's pretty hilarious in hindsight.

Another sidenote: I would never buy another sports card again, with the exception of the infamous Billy Ripken error card.
sjohnson301 - 2011-06-23
Jack - I have that Billy Ripken card. When it was first released via Fleer the very next day there were ads in the local paper offering 0 or more. I held on to that card, and still have it. If you'd like to purchase it for .50 I will take it via PayPal.

spikestoyiu - 2011-06-22
A very casual acquaintance of mine was busted selling counterfeit Beanie Babies on the Internet during they heyday.
dead_cat - 2011-06-22
If Beanie Babies "come around" again, it won't be for decades. There are millions of those things still out there, just mountains of mass-produced and -marketed crap.
Xenocide - 2011-06-22
I thought the title was "Bankrupt by Babies" for a second. Of course those are a far more common life-destroying collectible (and equally unlikely to increase in value.)
memedumpster - 2011-06-22
This just shows me the economy is in the shitter for no reason, we can build an economy on absolutely anything. We need ten buckets of shiny rocks, and extra employees to pass them out with Happy Meals and we're 1980's America again. Coke and whores for as far as the eye can see.
Braze - 2011-06-22
bankrupt by stupid
Robin Kestrel - 2011-06-22
But it seemed like a really sound long-term investment!

He has FIFTY Baldy the Eagles (now .77 on eBay)... how could he go wrong?

Evilhead - 2011-06-22
Actually, ##CONTENT##.99 with free shipping! That -0 he has is going to buy some awesome textbooks!

Crackersmack - 2011-06-22
I stocked shelves at a toy store during the beginning of the Beanie Baby thing. People would somehow research when we received shipments of Beanies and would wait outside before the store opened to get first dibs.

Those people were assholes. We used to fold or crumple the tags on as many of the Beanies as possible before we stocked them because it made them fucking livid.
dairyqueenlatifah - 2011-06-22
I love you.

Pillager - 2011-06-22
During my stint in retail, I remember a vendor telling us she'd receive numerous violent threats over her unlisted phone number if she couldn't hook obsessives up with the latest beanie babies.

frau_eva - 2011-06-22
I had a bunch of these things, even put tag protectors on them too. My Mom never paid above retail for them though or went around town constantly or anything. She called people who thought they would pay for their kid's college fund "kind of crazy." And this is the same person who now believes David Ike and listens to Alex Jones nonstop. So make of that what you will.
Raggamuffin - 2011-06-22
Of all the viable and established ways to save money for a child's college fund, how do you land on this one?
Caminante Nocturno - 2011-06-22
5 just for the alliteration in the title.
kingofthenothing - 2011-06-23
I see these things at yard sales all the time, and people still charge too much for them. Not that anyone will ever buy them, but it's still weird to see people that think these things have value.

Then again, I'm still seeing people try to charge over a buck for VHS tapes, when I thought that would taper off somewhere around 2005.
kingofthenothing - 2011-06-23
Also fun at yard sales: people with "collections" of 2 dollar bills. Lady tried to sell me 6 of them for 20 bucks.

dododge - 2011-06-26
The show "Clean House" has run into some of these collections (typically owned by men) and always tries to put them in the yard sale for cheap, if only to make room in the house.

A friend told me about being at a comic/SF convention back when Beanie Babies were still a thing, and watching some old cowboyish dude buy a couple of expensive ones and immediately toss them to his dog, much to the shock and horror of the vendor. "ONLY THE BEST FOR MY DOG!"

gambol - 2012-06-22

Meerkat - 2015-06-22
I used to buy them and give them to my ferret and he would hide them in his special place under the stairs.

Billy the Poet - 2011-06-26
Aside from the trinkets, someone with five kids and who drives a Suburban doesn't display enough judgement to make decisions for himself.
Rodents of Unusual Size - 2011-06-27
If I ever pity myself again, I'll watch this.

"My dad is real smart..."

Oh, denial is such a wonderful thing.
Rodents of Unusual Size - 2011-06-27
bonus horror


Big Muddy - 2011-06-30
I remember actually feeling a tinge of depression contemplating not only the useless bulk of this future waste product, but the immense effort done thanklessly by the Chinese laborers who can never hope for a equal level of return on their fucking investment! Then I saw a doc about the manufacture of Mardi Gras beads and fell deeper into despair.
Hailey2006 - 2013-09-27
They're still around, but a lot of them now licensed characters like My Little Pony, Garfield, Dora, Spongebob, etc.
I work in Wallgreen's and they sell them, they're basically just another run of the mill toy now
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