I went to a community garage sale recently and was amazed at some of the things people are still trying to offload that fall firmly into the category of “let it go.”
Outside of the expected items, the number of vhs tapes is quite staggering.
Over the past few years, I’ve come to accept that some things are just never going to find a new home. Comics were the hardest to accept for me.
The collector market is, in many ways, the worst thing that happened to comics. Readers and non-readers stopped thinking of them as magazines – disposable and of equal value in swaps – and started thinking of them as objects with the capacity to increase in value (however long the odds in general).
As soon as folks started putting comics in bags we were going down a dangerous road.
I laugh wholeheartedly when I hear the cry of the anti-digital that a digital comic has no resale value. I always offer to sell my Ambush Bug collection for only 20% over cover price to reinforce the self-deception intrinsic to that argument.
For three decades I’ve had friends in comic stores. If they aren’t rich, why do you think your “investments” are going to work any better?
The impression that comics – all comics – have resale value is the biggest and most widespread lie in the industry.
Why is a copy of Extreme Justice more likely to retain value than, say, a February 1995 issue of Time Magazine? They are both similar formats but one is in landfill and the other is in the bins of a hopeful seller who drags it from show-to-show looking for the next sucker.
Ultimately a comic is only different from a magazine if we pretend it is. I have no problem dropping a $5.99 copy of Esquire into the bin, but I once found myself about to put the Free Comic Day Infinity #0 into a comic bag!
We are programmed by our own hobby to put value to every comic that crosses our threshold.
Just once I’d like to buy an old Spider-man at a show for $50 and immediately fold it and put it in my back pocket. Perhaps set up a friend with a video camera to capture the horror of those around me. Would anyone try to stop me? It’s a distinct possibility.
And so a pile of comics goes into the blue bin. If you have trouble with this thought, at least be reassured your copies of Supreme Power now have an incrementally-greater demand because I have reduce the supply by one.
Ω An earlier version of this post appeared at www.wetalkpodcasts.com