Add this to the annals of bad investments.
The short documentary Bankrupt By Beanies by Chris Robinson Jr. details his father’s overzealous collecting of Beanie Babies, which became wildly and inexplicably popular in the 1990s. At the time, some Beanie Babies were reselling for many times their value, in some cases getting up into the thousands of dollars. Robinson’s father, seeing a money-making opportunity, began collecting them in the hopes of saving for his five children’s college education. He spent $100,000 on the dolls.
His goal was to have five collections, one for each of his kids. To do that, he enlisted his wife and children, the neighbors, and anyone else who was willing to stand in line and buy as many of the toys as he could get his hands on. His wife says in the video, “We never sold them, we just bought them. We missed that boat.”
Now Robinson has somewhere in the neighborhood of 20,000 Beanie Babies. Maybe they’ll be worth something in the future? Just get a college savings account folks. The full documentary is after the jump and you can read a Q&A with the filmmaker at Dazed Digital.