He’s real, he’s here, and I am so happy. The stonks guy is now a five-inch-tall, $30 thing you can buy, complete with a line graph that’s forever up 69 percent. It first debuted last July, but don’t let that stop you.
Officially his name is Meme Man, and he’s the wonky former mascot of at least one surrealist meme page, though he began his life as a failed model of a human head over at 4chan’s 3D modeling board. Meme Man, however, has transcended his origins. You probably know him best in his banker config, confidently and wordlessly asserting that the Line Will Go Up and that numbers, by extension, can be trusted.
I’m not gonna lie to you: I have never wanted anything so dumb so badly before. Possibly that’s because of the climate. A pack of wild redditors nearly bankrupted at least one hedge fund last week; the memes (and Meme Man) were naturally omnipresent. The frenzy of posts was intoxicating, and people were hopeful that by buying GameStop stock they might change the balance of our hopelessly broken financial system. It wasn’t silly, either; hope springs eternal from the human breast, and what’s a market if not the reification of people’s hopes and desires?
Anyway, Youtooz, the company behind the figurine, has written an incredible backstory for their product. “On the NASDANQ ^ NDQA 0.69USD (+69%), it’s always a bull run. Standing at five inches tall, Stonks has been immortalized in vinyl form,” the company writes. “Dressed in a black tailored suit and tie, you can be sure that this investor knows what he’s talking about.” And they’re right. Who knows more about the stock market than a guy in a black suit and tie?
However, the situation seems a little dark, at least for today. $GME is down many, many percentage points; it looks like the frenzy is starting to calm, and that the lines are righting themselves. Things are returning to the mean. The correct lines are going up again, and the invisible hand has returned to its invisible position. (It had previously halted trading on GameStop stock in Robinhood because of that app’s liquidity crisis brought on by retail redditors.)
The stonks guy, however, holds. Because playing the market isn’t about today — it’s about tomorrow, and the day after that, and the months and weeks and years it takes for storylines about property and capital to play out. The market is about the belief in a better future for you; investing is a fundamentally individual pursuit. The stock market is as good a place as any to place your fears and dreams about the future, though its abstraction might prevent you from looking at the world around you and wondering how everything was assigned its value.