"For the Fortune"
When people do things for fame, their desire for fortune is not far behind. It is part of experiencing popular culture and achieving “success”. A lot of things that happen in our culture is driven by money. Corporations have been opportunistic in exploiting people’s desire to engage in culture. The companies have profited immensely as a result. The flip side is that not all originators within the culture have received the fortune that has come with the increasing fame. “Cashing out” only happens to a few if properly positioned.
Reaching back to the previous conversation, let’s dig deeper into the concept of doing things “for the fortune.” It’s another motive for participating in culture past the love and interest. People look to instantly convert fame into fortune. My guys at WDRFA coined the phrase “Perception Worth More Than Money.” In people’s minds, they believe they are doing things for the fame and fortune. The fame comes so fast that spectators assume that the likes on IG or the number of views on YouTube equate to riches for the person of interest. Based on this assumption, the creator tends to do one of two things – go harder and determine how to capitalize off the popularity or create a false narrative that they are already profiting off the fame. They want to give off the aura of being about their bread.
What you will find is that most of these folks will not be around long enough to impact the culture.. They are here to extract what they can and move on. With the pandemic, it has accelerated the reality that everything in popular culture has turned into a capitalistic opportunity. It’s not all bad though. There are people who have embraced culture and turned a hobby into something positive. I have friends who started careers and businesses within the industries they followed intently. We’ve seen small shops/companies turn into giants within the culture and become richer and more famous than they imagined.
Let me speak to my own transition as a sneaker lover. At one point in time, I had between 300 – 400 pairs of shoes. I have worked at sneaker stores (big boxes and boutiques) and stood in line for sneakers. I have been featured in magazines and on websites. As the sneaker culture grew in popularity, it became more and more commoditized. After some introspection, I made the decision to divest my investment. I sold most of my shoes as my wife and I were transitioning to a new city. The profit helped us get a great start and I didn’t have to move a crazy amount of shoes a thousand miles. I still support the brands I like and buy occasionally but the game is totally different. Every shoe that’s worth any value based on quality is purchased via resell market. I’m thankful for my run but the culture is for other people now. Cashing out is never a bad thing but I believe it’s always better to leave the game in a stronger place than when you started.
By: K Miles II