Something Store.com: Box of Crap, or Package of Win?
Chuck Cook Photography Mysterious plastic packages fill this box.
About three years ago, I came across the Something Store Web site. The idea is that you can order a "something" for $10. You don't know what you're getting. There's something attractive about random stuff showing up in the mail. After all, most people love a surprise (as long as it's a good one). This line from their home page sealed the deal:
"Simply, we guarantee that your something will have over $10 in value, per MSRP, or we will refund the difference. "
So, I was in for one item, just to see what it would be. I figured I could blow $10. At the time, I was probably spending more than that per day at Starbucks.
My first Something was a cream-colored satiny table runner, and it graced our table the following Thanksgiving Day. I considered that a success, so the next time around I ordered three Somethings, then five.
In my Something packages, I've received earrings, USB hubs, scarves, gloves, toys and other miscellany. Some items are not as great as others, but many have been given to kids, friends and ended up as stocking stuffers.
This last time around, I went in for a whopping ten Somethings. One thing I hate about Something Store: the slow shipping. My order was placed on December 4. It shipped almost a week later on December 11, and finally arrived on December 19. When I'm getting a box of random goodies and it takes forever to get here, it makes you a little anxious with anticipation. It's just like being taunted with wrapped presents under the Christmas tree, or maybe like trying to get the famous Woot "Bag of Crap" and never successfully even making it to the sales page.
Finally, the order showed up in a nondescript, brown, cardboard box. What did I win?
Chuck Cook Photography First out, a ghetto-fabulous cap by Baby Phat. I'm totally wearing this the next time I go on a food truck crawl.
Chuck Cook Photography This is Halloween, Halloween, Halloween. Sure, I'll throw this on the table in October.
Chuck Cook Photography A beard trimmer and a... battery-operated massage brush? Are those school scissors?
Chuck Cook Photography It's a Hallmark, and possibly the ugliest little pillow ever made. At my house, this is called a dog toy.
Chuck Cook Photography This crimping tool might be useful if my husband didn't already own two. Anyone want this?
Chuck Cook Photography A scale and tape measure to make sure you're not getting dinged for extra baggage charges at the airport. Useful, but boring.
Chuck Cook Photography 1975 called and it wants its box of dominoes back.
Chuck Cook Photography A kerosene lantern. I grew up on a ranch and my grandmother had these around, so I'm kind of fond of this item.
Chuck Cook Photography Now THIS is more like it! This purse is gorgeous and this alone was almost worth the price of admission.
Chuck Cook Photography Finally, a dichroic glass bottle stopper. It's lovely, but I already have one, so I think this will be part of a gift bag for a friend.
Something Store.com might not be for everyone. People more practical than me might consider this a form of gambling, and maybe it is. It's pointless and random, but after spending most of my work and home life doing things for others, it's nice to do something fun for myself.
Was this all worth $100? Maybe not, but I don't think this is the last time Something Store will get my business. I could go out and spend the same money shopping for something specific, but where's the adventure in that?