Motorcycle Money

Motorcycle Money

A recent TONE Facebook post had a number of people pissing themselves in anger over a $5,300 Louis Vuitton record case that’s not even available anymore.

They all screamed “stupidity,” because after all, who would spend $5,300 on a box that holds only 50 records? (to be fair it does have an extra compartment for some CD’s and “accessories.”

Would I buy one? Probably not at $5,300, but I might for $2,000 – it is pretty cool. For those interested, LV will still make them through their custom shop, but that’s not the point.

There’s always been a disheartening angst for things outside of our budget. So many are so easy to dismiss things that don’t make sense financially to them. As Stewie Griffin on Family Guy is fond of saying, “whatever gets you through the night, bitch.” However, by this definition, more than half of the stuff in our world is stupid because it is non-essential. Everything that is above the baseline of what we need to get by is not required and therefore open to ridicule.

Geez. Those of us that enjoy hifi live in a world of non-essential stuff. Really? You’re going to sit there straight faced and tell me your non-essential stuff is more worthy than my non-essential stuff?

Let’s put this in context. Your neighbor buys a new Ducati Panigale-V4 Speciale, tipping the scales at pretty close to $40,000. You think he or she is a God. (And I must admit I’m pretty envious too…) Said neighbor is probably only going to put a few thousand miles a year on that beauty, so it might translate into about an average use of an hour a day, spread out over the course of a year.

Yet neighbor number two that just spent $40k on a hifi system that they will probably use 4-10 times that much, is an idiot. Even more, God forbid, they spent $40k on a pair of speakers or a turntable. And it’s not like that Ducati is going to get you to the emergency room.

Don’t get me wrong – I’m a gearhead to the core. I’ll be the first one across the fence slapping my neighbor on the back when they are out in the driveway admiring their latest acquisition. But this is how I see hifi – motorcycle money. There are plenty of people driving nice cars and nice motorcycles that aren’t terribly wealthy people – they’ve just decided to spend a (perhaps) disproportionate amount of their income on something that brings them joy for whatever reason.

So, if you’re wondering why hi end audio attracts neither new people nor women to the ranks, this is why. Who wants to be part of that? Think about it.  – Jeff Dorgay