How To Get $1000 In Designer Shoes For Free. Well, Okay. $1.23 With Tax.

I was dropping off clothes today at my favorite consignment store when I noticed a rack of designer shoes that had been discounted to $2 per pair. I had $14 in trade credit, so I could potentially “buy” seven pairs of shoes for $1.23 in sales tax. All of the $2.00 shoes are either brand new or only lightly worn. The original retail value of these shoes was, no doubt, well over $1000, if not over $2000. Just the Christian Lacroix sandals probably cost over $300 new.

This is exactly the type of scenario that brings the OCD tweaker in me right out in the open.

Since the OCD tweaker tag line of my life might as well be the “The Arbitrage of Everything,” I immediately want to buy these shoes to resell them at a profit. Only one pair of these shoes actually fits me, and most of these shoes aren’t even my style, so the desire to buy these shoes is totally about making a little cash. My Tweaker Self tells me that even if I resell these shoes at a garage sale for $5, I’ll still come out ahead.

The rational part of my brain tells me that reselling these shoes will take time. What is my time worth, and at what point will I “break even” on my new, miniature business as a used shoe salesman? My Rational Self also wants to know why I’m bringing yet more crap into my tiny house. These are both good points.

Ultimately, my Tweaker Self prevails (shocker) and I buy seven pairs of shoes.

On the way home, the thought strikes me that I probably spent more time thinking about this $1.23 purchase than the original buyers, who spent hundreds of dollars on the same pairs of shoes and then quickly abandoned them.

Whose shopping behavior is crazier? The person who spends hundreds of dollars on shoes she doesn’t wear or the person who spends hours of time reselling used shoes for what could be a tiny profit margin?

What does my ability to buy new and nearly new designer shoes for $2 say about our culture’s spending habits?

What’s the nuttiest discount you’ve ever taken advantage of? In the end, did the discount save you money, or was the discount ultimately just a means of separating you from your cash?

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