Saturday, April 19, 2014

The Real Lazy Way to Make Money: Confessions of a Paid Line-Sitter

File under: Entrepreneurship 101. Note, no capital needed.

Racked interviews entrepreneur and professional line-sitter Robert Samuel.  Samuels started his line-sitting venture, Same Old Line Dudes (SOLD Inc.), as the iPhone 5 was launched:
I was an employee at AT&T, and I lost my job. I wanted to supplement my income because I used to sell iPhones, and this time I wasn’t going to be able to sell them and make a big commission check. I live a few blocks from the Apple store on 14th Street, so I said, “Let me wait in line for somebody else and make them happy.”
The guy that hired me cancelled and said he wasn’t going to use me—he was just going to get it online but that he was still going to pay me. He paid me $100 and I resold the spot and made another $100, and then I called my friends and told them to come on down, because I just made $200 standing in one spot on a weekday afternoon.
Samuel has waited in line for everything from iPhones to cronuts to Isabel Marant‘s H&M line. He attributes his success, in part, to a phenomenon he calls “FOMO” (Fear of Missing Out): “Especially [in] New York, you have friends and you’re hanging out and it’s like, ‘Did you see that new exhibit at MoMA?’ ‘Do you know what a Cronut is?’”

(Via Freakonomics)


  1. Replies
    1. Yeah talk about jumping on opportunities. Perhaps we should all jump on cost effective opportunities swiftly!

  2. Sounds like an opportunity cost question. How much is it worth to stand in line for the new Star Wars flick? Would I take a $100 dollars to sit in line 4 days...perhaps that too much...lets say 1 day before the movie open. Is my time really worth $4.16? ($100/24hrs) Maybe this might be a good 1st job for kids though...teaches patients.

    1. Typical idiot response from someone who has picked up a bit of jargon, "opportunity cost," and uses it to sound informed, when he is completely clueless. ALL exchange involves opportunity cost.

    2. Typical response from someone who got up on the wrong side of the bed. An annoyed and perpetually frustrated libertarian is quick to use his "superior" knowledge to sound "better" informed. ALL exchange involves opportunity cost. Oh YEAH? SO WHAT? TAXES involve OPPorTUNity CosT too. Whine! GRRR.

  3. The Real Way to Make Money?????

    "Timestamp Fraud": A Rigged Market Explained In One Simple Animation

    Because if as Nanex shows below, there is in addition to everything else the element of timestamp fraud involved in the distribution of NMS "compliant" trading data for Direct Feed-to-SIP matching purposes, this means that not only is the market rigged, but its rigging goes from the very top all the way to the lowliest algo.

    What's worse, the rigged system is so embedded there is nothing anyone can do about it, until it just collapses under its own weight: think May 2010 HFT-created flash crash, only without the mirror-image bounce.

    Via Nanex,

    Direct vs SIP Data Feed
    Timestamp Fraud

    The animation also shows something that many aren't aware of: the original timestamp gets stripped, and replaced with a fresh timestamp when the SIP transmits it to a subscriber! Watch the timestamp in the box get stripped when it enters, and replaced when it leaves, the circle labeled "SIP Tape A". Keeping original timestamps is crucial for constructing audit trails, or for detecting system delays, which is why it's integral to this solution which allows HFT and non-HFT to coexist.