It’s Rare? I’m Sold! – Why my Credit Card Bill is so High

It doesn’t take much to convince me to buy a "collectible." Even less persuasion is needed when it comes to the purchase of an anime item. The most far-fetched rationalizations will push me to blow my food money on a book, model, trading cards, video or whatever. It’s insane and I think I have a problem.

This doesn’t need to become a shopaholic anomynous forum, but it is disturbing that I can convince myself that every authentic piece of anime merchandise I see will disappear if I don’t buy it that second. Because of a severely pinched pocket book lately, I’ve been able to resist the temptation of this draining anime vice. But wouldn’t you know it that when I go back to the store, and I’ve convinced myself that I really need it (for research of course, to an otaku everything is research) the item is vacant from the shelf and the latest, lamest Gamera film book is in its place. To keep from crying, I just tell myself what my mom always told me when the not-so-local toystore was sold out of Snake Eyes once again after I had saved 3 weeks allowance saving up for it, "It was meant to be." Like God handed down the shortshipments Himself.

It doesn’t help that the stuff is really rare in the first place, I mean it is imported from Japan. You never know when the item is part of a limited run and will disappear while you’re pulling crumpled bills out of your pocket. Other consumers become the enemy as soon as they start glancing over your shoulder and wait for you to put the item down and back into the chaotic free market. The retail establishment has you by the throat as soon as you walk in. I have no idea what economic world the western anime market lives in but my strong American dollar should be able to buy more. Western stores are still using the same pricing schemes that they had to resort to ten years ago during Japan’s economic boom. Is it too hard to come down in price and do us all a favor? I know I would spend even more money if I didn’t feel like I was getting so ripped off. The western market’s ignorance of real world economics is meant to be and don’t expect it to come to its senses any time soon.

It’s ridiculous to think of destiny when talking about shopping. This goes to show how far-fetched my rationalizations are. I know others have this problem because I see them in comic and toy stores desperately searching for the sell-out that will give them happiness or some temporary satisfaction. But the hunt always ends with remorse, buyer’s remorse.

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