Order now – only one meeeelyon dollars!


Okay, here’s proof that work is slowing down. I was at home browsing through the Costco coupon book (clue one), and I decided to check out the cookware set on Costco online to find out how much the set would be without the discount (clue two). On the front page of the website I noticed this advertisement for a ring, just kind of sitting there above a reclining chair and some discount flatscreen TVs:

To quote one of my favorite podcasters, my flabber is gasted.  I’ll only pause briefly on my personal dislike of diamonds:

  • I think they’re boring little flints of rock (give me a colorful ruby or emerald any day over a diamond).
  • They don’t serve any purpose except to be shiny, to make you look like you have money or to place unwarranted confidence in the strength of your relationship with your spouse or lover, or to make you happy for some other unfathomable (to me) reason.
  • You only want a diamond because excellent marketing by diamond sellers have fooled you into thinking that you want that worthless piece of stone.
  • And finally, the relationships between some diamond mining and human exploitation is sickening.

I have never owned a diamond. When the Hubby and I were engaged I told him that I didn’t want an engagement ring because I’d rather spend the money on a house or car payment. Also because I’m a gigantic klutz and kind of flighty about the spatial relationship between me and the things I own (read: I lose shit really well)

So anyway, all of that is beside the point (I think there’s a point in here). I know that many people like and want diamonds for various reasons. Fine and dandy. But if you are ready, willing and able to put 1 million dollars into a diamond and platinum ring are you really going to buy a ring from Costco??? Diamonds are status symbols, but so are Tiffany & Co. bags.

Help me out guys…I’ve seen the rocks on some of your hands. Are diamonds anything other than sheer indulgence? Is it just the shiny? And would you buy jewelry from a Costco warehouse, or do you need the experience of shopping in a fancy diamond store?

Oh, and the fact that I wrote this blog about some random advertisement on the Costco website is clue three that work is slowing down.

Comments

  1. Jeremy says

    I will retract my comment … your anniversary just passed.

    Perhaps it was a forward-thinking post for next year.

  2. says

    I am so with you, Biodork! I don’t think I could tell the difference between a diamond and a hunk of glass. BUT…..my engagement ring does have a diamond…..it’s a BLUE diamond which is a result of some sort of impurity. Apparently before we became engaged I scoffed at diamonds in favor of pretty colors so I got both. I think my blue diamond is very pretty. But admittedly frivolous. The idea of buying a million dollar hunk of rock at Costco is HILARIOUS! If I had a million million dollars I might do it for amusement.

  3. Judi says

    I love rocks. I love colored ones, clear ones, fancy cut ones, vintage cut ones, smooth ones, and unpolished ones. I like rocks set in silver, set in gold, set in platinum and even naked stones (no setting at all). It is not a status symbol for me, I just honestly, honestly love rocks! Sometimes I wonder if I’m part dragon.

    Someone once joked that Jewelry TV was my “porn”. Yup, it is. Nothing makes me happier than to just watch all the pretty stones go by. Sometimes, *gasp* I even buy them.

    Now, let’s talk about little robin’s egg blue bags.

  4. Madeline says

    I have 3 diamonds jewelery pieces (engagement ring, wedding band, and small necklace). All pieces were designed by the same jeweler and made from what my friend once called, “the Blind of Many Dead Ancestors.” Really, it’s only 2, my mom and my dad’s mom. I wouldn’t have chosen diamonds for myself, but they were the standard in previous generations, and I saw it as a way to honor my mom and grandmother.

  5. June Schubert says

    btw you can also buy a casket from Costco. Be prepared! (Oh, they do have overnight service for people with more pressing needs!)

  6. Paula Bilyeu says

    I comment not on the diamond issue because I agree with you. My engagement ring from your father was a .25 c marquee(?) cut from a merchant in the “Den of Thieves” on Wabash – as flawless as they came – pretty but small.

    What I will comment on/attest to is your ability to loose shit. You’re the only person I know who could, in a non-urban environ, put your backpack down, turn away for (in your words) 30 seconds and have it disappear. Of the genes you inherited from me, you did not inherit my evident inability to lose my purse/wallet. I once left my wallet on the cash register in a Chicago department store and came back 30 MINUTES later and it (and the cash inside) was still there – out of the cashier’s sight but in full view of the public. Go figure.

    Always love your blog, dear. Love, Mom.

    • says

      Confirmation bias, mother dearest?

      Actually, I think I have inherited the inability to lose expensive shit. Two years ago I dropped my cell phone on the bus, and when I called the station, the driver went out found it under the seat where I was sitting. Earlier this year I dropped my bright yellow wallet on the street outside of my apartment and it was still there the next morning. And in May (yes, it was traumatic enough that I remember the month) I forgot my brand-spanking-new $1000 dollar camera kit on the back of a chair at a restaurant, and someone turned it in instead of walking off with it. I don’t think I’ve lost anything huge since high school. Or perhaps since I started paying for things on my own? o_O

    • says

      That’s an interesting point, Nele, and one that I hadn’t thought of. In the past I have used an electron microscope and the microtomes we used to cut samples were diamond-coated. I know that there are many advances that have been made due to the availability and use of diamonds in industry.

      I followed your reference, and it eventually (and unsuprisingly) led me to wikipedia, where I found the “80% of mined diamonds…unsuitable for use as gemstones, are destined for industrial use.” The wiki article also mentioned that 90% of diamond grinding grit is of synthetic origin. Together this suggests to me that the majority of industrial diamond needs can be met by synthetic production (although I don’t know what kind of resources synthesizing diamonds takes up).

      To your point, it doesn’t sound like we are drilling for diamonds for industry purposes, but rather we’re throwing aside 80% of the drilled diamonds as “not good enough” for overpriced gem sales, and we just happen to have found a way to sell the waste.

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