I am in New York City and I have all sorts of exciting things to tell you, like the man who made his wife cry on the airplane or the awesome show I saw at Upright Citizens Brigade, or Tom Hanks being amazing on stage, and appearing relatively tall, which is a relief.
Instead, the most exciting thing going on with me and New York right now is my knock-off handbag adventure.
Some broad on the New York City Council is trying to make it illegal to buy knock-offs. Right now it's illegal to sell them, but I think it's cool if you buy them. I'm not sure. The transaction itself is illegal, but until this law passes, I will not get fined and/or jail time for buying the amazing bag I just bought.
Before my crime wave, I met my friend James for brunch who offered, "What if someone stole one of your articles, made it stupid, reprinted it, and got paid for it? That's a knock-off."
I completely agree with him. I don't think anyone could make my posts dumber than they already are, but don't diminish my brand! I'm Beth, the only Beth! I get it.
My bullshit justifications for buying knock-offs anyway are:
1. Louis Vuitton is an international icon making gabillions of dollars every second. When I am in that position, I will buy real designer bags.
2. The bag I want, which is the Louis Vuitton Neverfull GM, is a totebag in the signature LV leather. It's like a Burberry scarf. Here's a recognizable print, give us a grand. So in my estimation, the bag's actual retail value is $200. LV is ripping people off.
These are nonsense excuses for being a cheap label whore.
I went down to Canal Street and as soon as I emerged from the subway, this man comes up to me and says "Handbags, you want handbags?"
Normally, I'd feel out the other vendors but I got a good vibe from this guy. "Do you have Louis Vuitton?"
"Yeah, yeah. I got it. Come with me."
We walked half a block to a falafel truck. He looked from side to side and handed me a laminated photo gallery of fake bags as hundreds of tourists pushed past us. #24 was the LV Neverfull GM.
"How much for this one?" I asked.
I am a seasoned bargainer. $85 was bullshit. In what I felt was a bold and confident move, I rolled my eyes and started to walk away. He followed me. "Okay, okay. How much?"
"Not even in the ballpark of $85."
"Okay, you tell me what you think."
"$45." I said. You've got to get this part right because too low, and he's like forget it. But obviously, I want to pay the least amount possible.
Right away, he said, "$60."
Sixty I was willing to spend. "I want to see it."
"Okay, okay. You wait here."
I stood in front of the falafel truck, whose vendors seemed to be on board with this whole transaction, as my new friend headed across the street and got on his cell phone. I waited for about 3 minutes, and saw him marching toward me, looking shifty and holding a black plastic bag as low as he could hold it. We stood in the ordering spot of the falafel truck and I examined the bag as secretively as I could. It was certainly good enough and up to my very low standards.
"$55." I said.
"No, we say $60."
"It's obviously fake."
He was getting nervous, our deal was taking too long. "Fine. $55."
I handed him $60, he got $5 back from the falafel guy (!), and slipped me the cash, much the way you'd discreetly tip a valet. He then spun around and was off. Clutching the plastic bag, I raced off in the other direction. Safely three or four blocks away, I opened the bag to full examine my purchase AND I LOVE IT SO MUCH.
If you see me with this bag, you will know it's fake and I don't care. I put it on Instagram and now all of my fancy friends who have the real one will know it's fake and I don't care. The effort and the risk and the thrill of the purchase make the payoff so much sweeter. Or as my mother pointed out, "It's worth $60 just for the experience!"
Well, no. But oh my God I love my bag...