Tortoise versus the Hare Approach
Do you know the children's
story about the race between
the tortoise and the hare (rabbit) ? If you don't, you should
read it. It applies to bottle collecting. Those who take their
time, do their due dilligence, research, and are cautious will
end up with the best bottle collection and the most money left
in their pockets. Those who rush around, wasting time and gas
throwing around big money on things that they don't really know as
much about as they think they do will almost always end up
disappointed, poorer, and trying to sell their bottles that at one time
they could not live without. Most hare collections end up back on
ebay or sold at cheap prices at bottle shows. The hare collector
never ends up with a good collection in the end. Most hare collectors
eventually determine that they have spent too much money on
things that don't really mean much to them or most folks and they
seem to always become disappointed with their collections and end
up needing money worse than they need the bottles that they bought.
The tortoise collector paces
himself or herself, does research and learns a lot about what they want
to collect, doesn't waste money
trying to acquire quantity instead of quality and ends up with the best
collection. The tortoise collector does not get in a hurry, spends
more time researching and less time riding the roads. The tortoise
collector uses technology to his or her advantage. The tortoise
collector wisely conserves his warchest of money instead of throwing
bits and pieces of it at any random bottle that comes along cheap.
The tortoise collector saves his or her money for the right bottle
and then strikes. The tortoise collector can be patient and wait until
the right bottle comes along. The tortoise collector isn't sneaky
and two-faced like the hare collector. The tortoise collector has
fun and the hare collector has anxiety. The tortoise wins.
Are you a tortoise or a hare?
Did you rush out and buy every bottle you find?
Do you hide bottles from your wife so she won't know you spent money on them?
Do you buy bottles no matter the condition of the bottle?
Do you pay too much for bottles?
Do you just have to have
a bottle because you
know someone else who you think wants one like it?
Do you sneak around trying
to do bottle deals thinking
that sneaking around gives you an advantage?
Are you in a hurry to have a large collection?
If you answered YES to any
of these questions,
then you might be a hare collector.
If you answered NO to all
of these questions,
then you might be a tortoise collector and much
happier with more disposable income than the
Another children's story
that has a similar
character is Alice in Wonderland. The Mad Hatter
is definately the personality type of the hare collector.
Gotta have it, gotta have
it now is no way to have
long-term joy or short-term fun. As soon as you
spend too much for that bottle and get home with it
you are already feeling bad about spending too much
money on it. This is not the way to collect.
As a licensed psychotherapist, I can tell you it is not healthy.
Don't be a silly rabbit or a Mad Hatter or a greedy pig.
Have fun, not anxiety !
Pick a narrow theme to collect,
stick to it.
For example, you will NEVER collect every Georgia bottle.
It's absolutely impossible. You will NEVER collect every
Athens, Georgia bottle. It's impossible. You will never ever
collect every variation of Coke bottle from Georgia. There are over
500 variations just from Athens. Pick a narrow theme or two and
don't buy junky crap, wait and buy high quality bottles. Build a
world class collection of high quality bottles with a theme that has
some meaning to you, not just whatever you think the guys will envy.
Don't be a copycat collector. Put some thought into what you are
going to collect and be unique. Don't collect it just because you want
to start a competition with some other collector. That only causes
bad blood and anxiety. Find your niche and stick to it Do not
grab anything and everything because it looks cool. That's not
smart collecting. Be a tortoise, and better yet a smart tortoise.
Make fun and make friends
collecting, not anxiety and ememies.
Number one way to create an enemy collecting bottles is to be a
copycat who only wants a bottle because someone else wants it.
Be original, unique, and create harmony, not ego trips.
Be a tortoise, not a silly rabbit.
If there is overlap with
what you collect and what others collect,
then be generous and do not be a hoarder. Greed ruins a hobby,
but also beware that most people who claim to be in the hobby are
only in it to take advantage of real bottle collectors. There are many
unscrupulous dealers and collectors as well. I call the crooks
bottle buzzards. I've seen many collectors turn into bottle buzzards.
Don't be a bottle buzzard,
be cool, be a tortoise.
And if you decide to be a buzzard, just remember,
what goes around comes around.
Have fun !