Be careful. This post is NSFH. Not safe for home.
All collectors know about The Staircase. It is analogous to The Wall that runners face. In the case of the athletes they exercise up to a certain point at which all their effort and pain seems to coalesce and stop them from going any further. Then they either face it and break through the wall or quit and go home. The smart ones go home past the pub and pick up a six-pack.
Well collectors, as we said, face The Staircase. It is the point in the business when you know that you either have to step up and step up steadily or turn around and go home. In the case of a lot of collectors they will have spent so much on their hobby that they cannot afford to stop at the pub.
The Staircase may come early in the piece. If you set out to collect original Fabergé jewelled eggs the first step is a doozy and they never get easier. Ditto Ferraris and pneumatic blondes.
If your collection is humbler you can go along for quite some time getting the little bits and the beginner’s series and the popular models, but eventually you will come to the point where you need to spend MONEY. Money that might not be there or might be earmarked for other things ( Note the term “earmarked”. It refers to spending the grocery money on the Dinky Toy Altair Tank Transporter And Centurion Tank in original box and accurately describes what your spouse is going to do to you with it to the side of your head when she finds out…). If you spend the money you are on The Staircase and will be eventually climbing higher.
The Staircase has no top end – it disappears into the clouds like a cartoonist’s vision of heaven. Along the way you will meet dealers, collectors, fences, and little old ladies who just found this in the attic. You can always spend more money than you can find. This is the reason accountants are audited. The have their Staircases too.
All is not gloom – if you rest along the way you can feel very pleased with your ascent. Do not be dismayed if others go higher and faster – there will be some coming down The Staircase who may help you to the next level.
Some of them will be pursued by an angry woman swinging a Dinky Toy tank transporter like a medieval mace.