Collectors Spotlight - March 2008 - PennyMad
Age: 41 / Gulf Breeze, FL
PennyMad: Penny Madness
I've been a collector for about 3 years. I picked up a Penny here and a OO there but nothing too extravagant. I would generally run by the local Oakley dealer every few months to see if they had anything I couldn't live without. Because their selection was so small (1 single wide display case about 1/2 full), I usually ended up settling for whatever I liked the best in the case rather than something I was in love with. So over the first 2 years of collecting, I amassed about 20 frames. Then I discovered the O-Review and the madness began...
I grew up living at the beach, so back in the 80's, all the surf shops carried Oakley Razor Blades and Frogskins. Back then, all I needed and could afford was 1 pair at a time. So, I‘d pick one up and wear it until it broke or I lost it. At the time, losing one was expensive but not a big deal. Now, I'd rather lose a finger than be missing a frame for even 5 minutes. Times change!
My first Oakley sunglasses were a pair of the original Blades .I saved up the money to buy a pair and the accessory trigger arms that seemed expensive at the time! I bought a few different colors so I could swap them out. I remember having to be very careful not to crack the arms when removing them. I believe, it was imperative to use the “guitar pick” that came with the arms to pry it just enough to clear the tiny pegs on the top frame.
My first Oakley item was a set of hand grips for my BMX bike back in the 80's. They were an absolute must have at the time for a “cool” BMX!
I really wish that I still had my first pair of Blades from the mid 80's. Someone decided that they wanted them more than me and broke the passenger side window in my truck and stole them. I did not replace them, instead buying a pair of Frogskins. Not really a regret since there was nothing I could do about it, but I wish I had them. If any of you know who might have done such a thing, let me know because I still harbor feelings of resentment from this incident! Kidding of course..... but not about the resentment part..... I wonder where BMCAPS was living in the 80's?
I hope to start picking up some of the serial numbered Ichiro Juliets in the near future. They are getting difficult to find, but I'm constantly looking. I also want a Bob head chrome keychain, but it seems like they are rarer than Brown Juliets at this time!
I guess if I had to pick one Jewel, it would have to be my Brown Juliet. I've been trying to focus on the serial'd X-Metals and it's a bugger to find some of them! So when I had the opportunity to get my hands on the Juliet, I jumped. Money comes and goes, but that Juliet will be buried with me! Now I just gotta find a Carbon Penny and I can relax a little.
I display the collection across three towers – a single wide stretch tower, a double wide and a triple wide. My wife is not the biggest fan of them being in the house, but if she had any idea of the value of the contents of those cases, she'd probably understand why they are guarded and under lock & key! I hope to one day buy a bigger house that will have a game room where I can truly have my own Oakley space. I've gathered great ideas from other members' setups, I just need more room.
Not really. There is a local surf shop that can pretty much get anything I need, but it's up to me to know ahead of time what I want and place the order thru them. They are very cool about trying to get my stuff in as soon as possible but their inventory leaves a lot to be desired. It would be nice to go in occasionally and see something unexpected, but that hasn't happened in a very long time.
The extent of my customizing is to swap out some lenses to create custom combinations out of stock colorways. That said, I have many customized glasses that have been produced by Dr. Chop's tireless efforts! He is directly responsible for at least half of my OO collection and a few other frames scattered throughout my collection. I cannot thank him enough for providing the fix to my OO jones!
I also collect some of the Oakley watches. I currently have all the Time Tanks, 4 Judges and 4 Time Bombs. I guess I don't collect any other Oakley products, although I do buy a lot of the clothing, wallets, bags, etc. However, I heavily use all those items, so I don't really consider that to be a part of my collection. If I scuff up a computer bag that I'm using, I don't get too upset about it. However, if a lens gets even a fingerprint on it, I'm cleaning it up immediately. I can't go to sleep at night if every sunglass is not in its proper place and clean. I think you've got to be a little obsessive to fit into this place. I think it all goes back to that truck incident many years ago...
Besides collecting sunglasses, I collect signed guitars from bands or artists that I've met in person along with drum cymbals, guitar picks, etc. I was able to get a guitar from Trent Reznor that was played and smashed on stage. I've got guitars signed by 3 Doors Down, Stain'd, Three Days Grace, Hinder, Bon Jovi, Breaking Benjamin, etc. I've also got a cymbal signed by Dave Grohl and Taylor Hawkins. I got some of that stuff framed and hanging up, but a lot of it is waiting for me to get a bigger house with a game room so I have a place to hang it. Of course that stuff will have to be squeezed in around the towers! Gotta have my priorities in order after all.
I also enjoy collecting watches. I will typically buy just one really nice one per year. Over the last few years, I've added a couple of Rolexes, a Panerai and a Maurice Lacroiux to my collection. Of course the majority of my watch collection is comprised of Oakley watches. I actually wear my Time Tanks more than any watches I own. I also receive more compliments and questions when I wear the Time Tank than any other watch. It's just so freakin' big that it commands a certain amount of attention and respect!
I am going to quote from Dr. Chop on this question. “Take it slow....WAY slow in the beginning”. This is soooo true! When I first got onto the O-Review site, I bought everything in sight, trying to amass a collection based on the sheer number of Frames I could get. That was the wrong approach. I altered my course to focus on the frames I really enjoyed wearing and looking at instead. I still amassed a large number, but at least, for the most part, I would actually wear them! It is much more satisfying to hunt down an elusive pair and really enjoy adding it your collection than buying something to simply stick in the case. I've done both and can attest to this! Slow down and savor the hunt!
Also, talk to your local Oakley dealers. Not just about the sunglasses in the case, but get to know them. This can pay off huge dividends over time. I was in a sunglass store out-of-town one weekend and struck up a conversation with the guy behind the counter. He turned out to be the owner of the store and after a long conversation about glasses and watches and everything else, he ended up offering me a double-wide and a triple-wide display case for free! Had I not taken the time to talk to him and show an interest in his business, I'd have never added those cases to my collection.
They think that I am insane!!! And I can see why they would think that. I don't go around advertising my collection to everyone. However, if someone has an interest in my Oakley sunglasses, I will warm up and share a little bit. I've actually turned some of my family members into “semi-collectors” that have a dozen pairs. I've also hooked up friends with Oakley watches and sunglasses. I do whatever I can to spread the good word!
When I was working my way thru college at night in the late 80's, I had a pair of neon yellow Razor Blades with grey lenses. I distinctly remember them because I wore them everywhere I went. One day, while working in a warehouse, I sat them on the back of a forklift I was driving and forgot about them, until I heard a nasty crunching sound! The Razor Blades had fallen off the back and I'd run them over. They were flat as a pancake. I carried them to the 17th Street Surf Shop in Virginia Beach, and was told I could buy and replace all the parts except the top frame. So they gave me the address for Oakley's warranty department and suggested that I send them in with a short note explaining what had happened. Everything about the glasses was destroyed so I held out little hope. About a month after I sent them in, I received a box with a brand new pair of Razor Blades! They were clearly under no obligation to replace them, but they did anyway. I knew right there that Oakley was a stand up company that I could depend on. And I've never looked back!
I have really enjoyed the time I've spent on the site researching glasses, talking to other members and viewing collections and threads. I've never taken the time to contribute to an online community before the O-Review. We have a passion for all things Oakley that non-collectors can't understand. That makes this a meeting place where we can discuss things and bounce ideas off one another without worrying about looking obsessive. Everyone here already knows that about each of us! Let's just keep helping one another accomplish our O aspirations and treat one another with the respect that we want. Thanks to everyone who has helped me along the way and I hope I can return the favor. And finally, no amount of gratitude is enough to thank Dann for creating this Oakley oasis! Thanks for letting me in and allowing me to become a part of our community. Long Live The O!!!