Diamonds Are Valuable?


Last week, Henry Winston Co. bought a diamond for $50,000,000.00.  Holy crap!  That’s a lot of zeroes for what is essentially a barbeque briquette.  (FYI – diamonds are really just uber-squashed coal.)  The auction took less than five minutes, and the price was a record for “one of the world’s greatest diamonds.”  Clearly, I don’t run in those circles because, even though I’ve heard of the Hope Diamond and the Koh-i-Noor, I had no idea this little bauble existed.  (And, honestly, in a couple of weeks I’m going to forget all about it.)  It’s not that I am so airy-fairy (artsy-fartsy?) that I’m not impressed by 50 million bucks – like most (honest) people — I am, but, the truth is I don’t value jewelry.

This isn’t a judgement call.  I have no philosophical problem with Meryl Streep wearing a bracelet worth twice the price of my Toyota or George Clooney giving Amal a rock that could, theoretically, feed a Malawian village from now until the end of time.  If that’s what they value – so be it.  It’s just not my thing.

To put this into perspective, I don’t value knives, either.  (I’m not a chef.)  Or wrenches.  (I’m not a mechanic.)  Or the going rate for a PGA golfer.  (I’ve never been a fan.)  My point is that value, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder.  So, who the hell beholds 50 million dollars’ worth of anything?   To be perfectly honest, I can’t even comprehend 50 million!  Dollars, cats, rats, one-eyed waddling penguins?  That’s just too many to count.  Do they fill five football fields?  Or laid end to end, do they stretch in a line from Paris to Marseille?  (Frankly, for that kind of money – somebody better get laid!)

Oscar Wilde once said a cynic was “a man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.”  Luckily, our world hasn’t totally succumbed to that — yet.   The stuff most people value – friends, family, love, laughter, etc. – still don’t have a price tag.

“OMG! WalMart is having a sale on parents.  I’ve had these ones for years, and they’re gettin’ kinda old and grouchy.  I think I’ll go down and pick up a new pair.”

“I can’t wait for Black Friday to get a bunch of cheap friends to come to my Christmas party.”

“How much for dinner and a movie?”

That last one might be a little too close to home for some people … but … you get my meaning.