The world is full of things for sale, from inexpensive things to extravagantly expensive things. There are cars, homes, boats, shotguns, sports equipment, jewelry and, of course, clothes.
What is worth the money and what isn’t?
I think the only sensible way to frame the question is whether or not something is worth the money to a particular person. This can depend on the means of the person as well as his or her priorities. A wealthy woman may buy $900 shoes whether or not she’s crazy about shoes. Regular people who aren’t wealthy may still find something very expensive to be worth the money because they have a specific fondness for that category of things. An avid fisherman might treat himself to a $1000 fly rod, but think $95 is too much to pay for a shirt. Within the context of what you can and are willing to spend on something, there are a couple other criteria that I think are useful. Will you get a lot of use from it? Is there a better option for the same price or a lower price? If there is nothing as good or better than the item you’re considering for its price, then that will help to justify the purchase. Sometimes you won’t know until after you buy and own it for a period of time whether or not it was worth the money. Did it exceed your expectations, perform its function and last a long time. Are you glad you own it? Not everything that’s worth the money makes you happy when you think about it, but those favorite things do.
Here are some random things that I think are worth the money. Different strokes…
My favorite car of all time. It’s small, fast, agile, indestructible and massively engaging to drive fast. Porsche has won more endurance races than any other make. If they had forty eight hour races, Porsche would win them all.
It makes spending time in the backcountry so much easier, safer and more comfortable. There are endless good brands. This is one of them, Big Agnes, based in Steamboat Springs.
Not the most exotic or the most expensive, but definitely good enough and worth the money. My wife is a great cook, but when I do it, I can’t stand crummy pans or dull knives.
Introduced to me by a great friend who really knows how to live well. There are lots of good inexpensive red wines, but cheap Pinots can be pretty lousy. For about $35.00, it’s really nice for the warmer months and not all the money in the world.
These are beautifully made and have a very classic style. They don’t get loose after you where them three times and the lenses work. Very cool brand.
It’s a luxury that pays you back every night. These are Italian, from Frette. Not crazy money, although, by the time you buy all the pieces, it does add up. They don’t wear out quickly and crawling into clean ritzy sheets is a treat.
I only use these on the plane, but they completely eliminate the drone that can make your head throb after a few hours. They’re also perfect for when you want to be left alone. People don’t try to make conversation when you’re wearing headphones.
They act like these are some heritage style from their old catalog, but I know the factory that makes them and they’re actually an old Arkansas State Prison boot. They run about a full size large, but they’re comfortable and cool-looking. My goal is to outlast these boots, but I think it’s a long shot.
Having a custom bike built to your specs is a fun process and the result is worth owning and riding. Eddie Merckx won the Tour de France five times and built a custom bike for me twenty five years ago. I had it done in his sponsor’s orange and French blue color scheme just like the one he rode. Molteni sausage was his sponsor, which I always thought was kind of funny. Read more about bikes in my ‘City Bikes‘ blog.
This is what the Ferrari Formula 1 team has always used, which is good enough for me. They really are great to use and less money than an oil change on a Ferrari.
These guys are most well-known for their field jackets, but I love this classic motorcycle jacket. Anything that makes you feel more like Steve McQueen is money well-spent.
They’re famous for their fountain pens, but I’m not a fountain pen guy. This pen has a unique, vintage look and is great to use. If you need to sign something important, it’s nice to do it with something special. It’s like a nice watch, not exactly necessary, but still worth having if that’s your thing.
Classy weekender for car trips. It’s sturdy and looks just right, a nice break from the generic black roll aboard. The medium is the most useful size.
My dad learned to fly in one of these, but now they have 180 horsepower and can land anywhere. You can’t put enough stuff in them to exceed the weight limit even with full tanks. You won’t get there very quickly, but you can go to a lot of places that you simply couldn’t get to in anything else.
Matt Lesniewski makes great hand-forged knives. I have a few of them, but this one is a massive chopper. It’s a mid-1800s design that fur trappers used to carry. If you don’t want to lug a hatchet around, this is the next best thing. Matt made the knives for “The Revenant” with Leo DiCaprio.
A great car, a pair of really good boots or a fine pocket knife should make you smile when you look at it. When I’m driving a favorite old car, I always turn around and look at it as I walk away. I’m glad I own it; I doubt I’ll ever sell it and, to me, it was worth the money.
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November 11, 2020
I just found your blog and really like it. I’ve got six of the items on this list…and agree that they’re worth the money. That said, I never apologize for buying the best. I don’t understand buying something just because it’s cheaper. I’ve found that when you do the research and likely spend a little more money, you get a much better value in the long run.