I had a good friend whose name I won’t divulge here who had his hand in EVERYTHING illegal or shady that was going on in our high school.
He liked to think of himself as an entrepreneur and I think he was right…what a guy!
I wonder what ever happened to him…
Hopefully he didn’t end up behind bars…
Anyway, check out these stories from AskReddit users about the black markets at their schools.
1. Shut down!
“I sold stink bombs out of my locker.
Stupid kids kept setting them off in class.
That’s how I got shut down.”
2. Oh, boy.
“As a senior I was 18 and old enough to be a stock boy at a liquor store, even though you had to be 21 to buy. The owner was a rich old widow who definitely had a thing for me and she wound up putting me in charge of the books and auditing the store.
Needless to say I started a side hustle supplying booze to my entire high school. I took orders during the week, and had them ready for Friday nights, delivering everything out of the trunk of my car. I made roughly $3,000 a week for about 9 months.
It ended with the woman selling the store and buying one closer to where she lived (she lived about 1 hour away) and the new owners were a couple who cleaned house of all current employees so they could run the store themselves to save money. The widows new store “mysteriously” burned down three months later but that’s another story.
When the new owners audited the store they called me asking if I could come in and help them with the books because “something wasn’t adding up” and I told them to pound sand since they fired everyone without notice. Heard from another ex-employee who worked at a pizza shop next door they chalked it up to the widow not knowing how to run her business and running herself in to the ground.
In hindsight, I was lucky it ended when and how it did because I would’ve definitely gotten caught at some point. Saved up enough money to buy a brand new truck in cash right before leaving for college and having money in my account to get me through freshmen year without working more than 20 hours a week. I’ve since rolled that truck in to every new vehicle I’ve owned as an adult.”
3. Very clever.
“Pirated games that had the copy protection cracked.
This was in the early 1990s when you had to have the documentation to solve the copy protection.
With some clever programming, you could bypass that usually.”
4. Sounds kind of disgusting.
“We used to make Kool-Aid bags.
Basically you would take a ziplock sandwich bag, a packet of Kool-Aid, and about a half a cup of sugar and mix the ingredients inside the bag. Snip a corner off the bag, suck on that all day long. Could usually get $.50 if memory serves.
This was in the mid 80.”
5. Catholic school.
“Extra ties and sport coats.
Went to a Catholic high school with a dress code and you’d be surprised by how many kids forgot the basics of the uniform on a daily basis.
You could charge outrageous prices for renting them out for the day so they didn’t get detention.”
6. Not too bright.
“There was a guy who sold Vitamin Water and protein bars from his locker at a much cheaper rate than the convenience store nearby.
We assumed he was able to get some sort of bulk discount and was passing the savings onto us while still making a little bit.
Nope, turns out the dude just didn’t do his math right – he was buying individual cases of the products but divided incorrectly when trying to get the unit prices and was just selling everything at a loss.”
7. Shady business.
“We had illegal gambling rings. Around my sophomore year, someone learned cee-lo and betting on dice got big.
Eventually admin shut it down and banned dice on campus. The thing is TI 83s had a dice simulator so that games continued.”
8. Slime time.
“When I was in the eight grade, there was a huge black market for fidget spinners, slime, and Rubik’s Cubes.”
“At my school, it was grade-changing services.
A few of the techie guys had been put in charge of school databases/websites/etc and were able to change your grades (for a fee, of course). There were also previous-year tests that people passed around.
I went to one of the most hyper-competitive schools on the country. Finished 149th in my class at a 3.9 GPA. Most of the top students spent 14+ hours of the day between studying, tutoring (usually Kumon), extra online courses and the regular school day.
Safe to say the grades market was well and thriving.”
“Nobody else in my elementary school were allowed to have Garbage Pail Kids.
So I’d buy boxes from our local convenience store and sell them at school.”
“Comedy albums. Especially if they had a lot of swearing. Cheech and Chong were the most popular.
We were too young to buy adult material but this was before albums had parental advisory stuff on them. Most of them did say for adults only in some way but if you bought it from a place like Sears or Wal Mart most cashiers wouldn’t catch onto it or didn’t care.
My family was one of the first to have a tape deck hooked up to our stereo and I just copied albums all the time.”
“I used to sell homemade TI-83 graphing calculator applications that were programmed with a bunch of solvers for equations you’d need to use for quizzes, such as the quadratic formula, x and y intercept, triangle solver, etc.
It even got to the point where teachers would force students to wipe their program memory and show them the confirmation screen before each test… so just wrote a program that simulated the home screen and would respond “Memory cleared” when the button combination was pressed.
It would also simulate an empty program list so the students could show the teacher that the “memory cleared” function had “worked”.
Always one step ahead!”
Now it’s your turn.
What was the black market at YOUR school?
Talk to us in the comments and let us know!