an Oh Myyy Property

Kids are smart - future leaders are created with clever ideas, like when students create a black market for what would normally be harmless items. Candy, zip ties, and jerky are just a few examples.

Nazzapple201 asked: What 'black-market' did kids in your school run?

Submissions have been edited for clarity, context, and profanity.

This was brilliant in the days before everyone had a camera.


Photos of groups of friends. I'd take pics at lunch (and sell yesterday's photos for $5 to $8) of all the little crews and cliques, develop the film in the darkroom during a free period in the afternoon, print the negatives during 1st or 2nd period photo class... sell the black and white 5 x 7's or 8 x 10's during lunch and take more images. Wash, rinse, repeat. I made hundreds of dollars, if not more (I was a spendthrift). Some adults thought it was drug related, but no one who actually knew me. My school had 2 to 3 thousand students, some kids bought multiple pics. I took pics of couples, but the best were groups of 10 to 15 ppl... could make $100 on 1 image.

This was mid- 80s. I wish I had this job now.


What's great about this is that a lot of those kids still cherish those photos 30 years later.


You know... thanks for saying that. I can't say I really thought about it like that... lol.❤


Kids are crafty.

One kid in middle school sold dumdum lollipops. He carried them around in a shopping bag, and I believe he charged a quarter.

In highschool I had a friend who would sell cookies. 1 for 1$. Eventually staff got wind and told her to stop. So people would give her money for no reason. And the next day she would give them cookies for unrelated reasons.

Edit: Almost forgot elementary school. Kids would sell their parents jewelry for ice cream money. One kid sold his grandmother's engagement ring for 50 cents.


Kids were buying cookie futures. Smart move.


Back in my day we used Alta Vista.


WiFi password to the teachers WiFi network so that we could use sites blocked on the student and guest networks. School kept changing it but the kids always figured it out.


At my school the kids would just download a proxy.


Begun, the proxy wars have.


Not all heroes wear capes.

Teacher here. A kid at my previous school sold those little salt and pepper packets to kids at lunch everyday. 50 cents for both. The cafeteria (due to state/fed regulations) didn't season anything so the food was blander than bland. He made a few hundred dollars over the course of the month he did this before admin shut him down.


Now I want to know why someone would ban seasoning.


Probably an attempt to keep low sodium levels.


A real cold war.

Zip ties.

When you go to a ski resort and buy a lift ticket, before the RFID ones a lot of places have now, they'd have a little thing full of zip ties so you could take one and attach it to your jacket.

When I was in middle school, over the course of a week I took a couple of thousand of those from a resort I went to with my family for vacation. When I got back to school, I brought with me a backpack full of zip ties, neatly zip tied into bundles of twenty. I sold those bundles of twenty for $1-$5 each, depending on who was asking.

Why would people want to buy zip ties? Well, at first, they wanted to get revenge on me, for zip tying all their shit closed/together/to other things. Eventually, though, once they had gotten revenge on me and still had zip ties left over, they'd do it to other people. Who would want revenge on them. And so on, and so forth.

I had a lot of repeat customers in that battle.


Sell three colors for different prices and watch factions happen.


You not only had a market monopoly, you created the demand from scratch. Damn.


First Kool-aid, then tequila.


Kool-aid gummy bears

In middle school a group of guys I know began to sell these for a dollar a bag because the school snacks were trash. They ended up creating an Empire and would literally sell a hundred of these daily. The school eventually cracked down on their business because the kids were making a mess in the bathrooms. The dealers stopped selling before they got into trouble and this upset the kool aid addicts. This then prompted many other students to come up with their own recipe and try to become the new hot shots. I kid you not when I tell you how quick everyone was to try and dispose of their competition. The school was giving out detentions to everyone selling the product and to those buying it. After the school stated that they would suspend anyone seen with the Kool-aid gummy bears it died.

I feel like my school was the birthplace of many future drug dealers and addicts.


Sugar is a hell of a drug.


These future leaders.

There's 2 that come to mind. Both in middle school.

The faculty caught on that this one kid was selling something from his locker. They immediately thought it was drugs and asked to search his locker. Turns out his dad cured really good beef jerky and my whole class was obsessed with it. Think him and his dad made a good buck before he got shut down.

The other kid lived near the Tastycake factory in town (pre-packaged, super-sugary baked goods). The factory would throw out perfectly good products if their packaging was damaged in any way. This included the outer boxes that held the tasty treats. This kid would go to their dump, steal these boxes, and then sell the treats individually in school for $1 a treat. His operation lasted a bit longer than the beef jerky kid's.

I think both of them became good friends in high school lol


This is the only one that made me laugh out loud lmao


Warheads are still the crown jewel of sour candy.

I ran a black market distribution network for Warheads in the 4th grade. They had just come out, and were immediately all the rage at school. Mom had an in with a wholesaler, so I bought a ton of them. Sold them for .25 a piece. $.50 for the fizzy ones when they came out. Eventually we had a small riot on the playground when I stood on the jungle gym and threw them into the crowd like Frank Lucas throwing out f*cking turkeys in Harlem. Some kid got hurt, the teachers got wind of the racket and i got shut down. Warheads were banned from the school. But man, it was a wild ride.


I also got in trouble with my Warhead selling. Kid gave me a $20 for 10 and his parents ended up calling the school to find out who he gave his money to. My Warhead selling ended the next day with my giving his money back ... And I didn't get my Warheads back.


Sugar is really addictive.


Pixie sticks were banned because kids were snorting them in middle school. We had passes to go across the street for lunch and they would buy them from the mini mart. Once they were banned people would sell them out of their locker like it was actual cocaine.


Doesn't putting sugar in your nose hurt???


I'd imagine snorting anything hurts.

In my middle school years, kids smashed smarties and snorted them.


When the black market becomes too real.

My school had a guy who used to go around selling candy, he ended up dying when he was shot attempting to rob a home, good times.


That went from 0 to 100 real quick.


It's good to be the king.

A buddy and I used to load up on energy drinks for $1 or $2 a pop and turn them around for $3 at school.

Another kid tried to get in the game and started a turf war. Legit cornered me in the bathroom to try and intimidate me into stopping. I laughed in his face, called his bluff and pushed passed him. Told all the people who bought from me about it and nobody would buy from him.

It's rough on the streets.


The king stay the king.


This is like confronting Gatsby. It's pretty much a death sentence.


This is a step below prescription pads.


I had a teacher who gave me unsupervised access to all the attendance records and paperwork. I sold blank early dismissal and late entry slips. For a higher price I'd change people's attendance record.


This is the one that is actually pretty shady.


Honestly, schools get paid based on attendance. It wouldn't surprise me if that blind eye wasn't as blind as OP thought.


schools get paid based on attendance

What the f*ck is wrong with the USA?


What I never get is that schools that perform well get more funding which gives good incentives to teachers etc... but worse performing schools get less funding continuing the cycle.


Crack chicken.

Chicken biscuits from Chick-fil-A.

My friend would go there every morning and buy 20, then later 50, then 100. He sold them for about a dollar more than he bought them. And he sold them out, every single day...for 2.5 years. Our school started really early (7:10 am), so once people woke up they frequently REALLY wanted Chick-fil-a.

He took me to school a good bit before I got a car and he would have to stop by Chick-fil-A on the way. He would always give me a biscuit for free, and when I tried to pay he assured me that it was not a problem for me to have one. He always, always, sold out his biscuits.

I seriously, actually think he made more than $30,000 in high school just by doing this for 2.5 years.


"Boss... I made the hundred biscuits this morning like always, but that high schooler didn't show up... Think he's taking a sick day?"


I'd imagine when that kid graduated, that Chick-fil-A had to shut down after the sudden inexplicable plunge in their daily biscuit sales.


They just had to find a new distributor.


There's actually a lesson about business etiquette here. If you're going out of business (with decent lead-time) or taking a sabbatical or whatever, always give your suppliers/distributors a heads-up with ample time to prepare for their own decline in business. It will save everybody a lot of headaches (and potential heartbreak), and keep your bridges thoroughly unburnt should you decide to get back into whatever industry you're leaving/taking a break from.


Speed fighting because why not.

Well... In my school we had an underground fight club. It took place in the limbo between 3rd and 4th periods in the boys locker room of the gym. If you ran out of class right when it ended you could get into the locker room from the hallway entrance if the people inside opened it for you. We only had about 30 or 40 guys in the entire year so everybody knew each other pretty well.

There were different weight classes and curated rounds. My favorite was two scrappy 130 pound skinny kids vs the 300 pound held-back 20 year old. The fights got pretty intense but were always kept to a certain restraint so that people wouldnt return to class bloodied up or with ripped clothing. There was always a time limit on them of about 3 or 4 minutes so kids who didn't have gym that period could get to their next class only a few minutes late.

Well, anyway, one of the kids would record the fights on his phone (back when camera phones with video recording capabilities were sort of a luxury) and put them online behind a password. Then he would sell access to the videos for a few bucks. They were all very well shot and nobody ever told on us or held any grudges. The fights were always very sportsmanlike and even at a certain point someone was appointed referee. Crazy days.


behind a password

At least they were smart enough to do that instead of sticking them on YouTube or something.


Nicely done.


I was a loan shark in middle school.

I earned money at my dad's business, so I could always loan kids a buck for a bottle of pop or whatever.

They would always pay me back for interest the next day. Usually a dime on a one-day dollar loan.

In high school I learned to calculate loan interest and realized that a 10% return for a 24-hour loan was crazy high.


You earned money in middle school?


Dad had a business and put us kids to work. Not just on paper, real hourly labor.

I hated it at the time, but I'm so damned grateful for it now.


Was there a black market within your school?

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When you know your kids backwards and forwards, this is the best tool in your arsenal.

Getting our kids to listen to us is not always the easiest of tasks. They're willful and stubborn, but we've got a mighty weapon they are rarely prepared for: reverse psychology. Getting them to convince themselves to want to do something against their own initial intentions takes some work and a whole lot of creativity, but a little sneaky manipulation goes a long way. Here are some clever parents' tricks that are definitely worth taking notes on.

Redditor u/LeanderD Asks:

Parents of reddit, what's your best example of reversed psychology on your kids that actually worked?

He Floated His Idea Through A Back Channel


Wanted to name my boat. Anything I would think of was dismissed as stupid by my 13 year old son. After deciding on a name, I confided to a male friend my son liked. Made my friend suggest the name as though it was his idea. My son thought the name was perfect. Done.


We Always Want What We Can't Have

One of my best friends through childhood used to be punished with no salad if she misbehaved. She cherishes salad now and would always try to eat as much as possible during school lunch. Coincidentally, her now husband used to be punished with no books, it had the same effect. I think it's hilarious that they'd be hitting the salad bar and library like some black market their narc parents couldn't reach hahaha.


A Deceit That's A Cut Above The Rest


Don't know if this counts, but, at my high school (private, boys only) in the 1960's, they made a big deal about how long your hair was, and would occasionally order a boy to go home and "get a haircut".

I thought it was stupid, until years later, a master confided to me at a reunion that the policy was deliberate. The school figured we'd spend so much energy rebelling about hair length, that we would ignore other aspects of teenage rebellion. (Not?) Surprisingly, they were mostly right.


Damn! That's smart. Wow.


Oh they don't like long hair?

I'll show them. I'll grow my hair out as lon- what?! No I don't want to go "party"? I gotta try out this horse shampoo.


The Forbidden Book

Hi I was a victim,

There was a forbidden book that I was not allow to read on the shelf. My parents said I could only read it if I behave myself.

It was summer holidays and I was playing games all day (after 6 hrs of summer homework). One day I was home alone and had the opportunity to grabbed it. I read like half of it in one go. It was 5000 years of Chinese history.

Safe to say I was bamboozled.


Flowers Of The Queen

My parents always told me my broccoli were the flowers of the queen and that I really shouldn't eat them, or else the queen would get very upset! I, of course, ate the whole broccoli in a few seconds.


I'm telling the queen and she's gonna be pissed


Sleeping Beauty


I taught my kids when they were toddlers that no amount of yelling, shaking or hitting can wake a sleeping adult. The only thing that works is a gentle hug and/or a nice kiss on the cheek.

Edit: Probably needed some more details for the reverse psychology aspect to be clear. It went something like this - Step one, tell the kids I'm going to sleep and nothing they do will wake me (head buried face down is the safest position). Step two, after the initial onslaught dies down pretend to awaken on your own. Tell them you got a bit of nap left in you and nothing can wake you, especially not hugs and kisses.


Holy sh*t...if my daughter woke me up like this I would buy her a pony.


I am saving this comment because this will save lives if I ever have kids, stg.


A Walk In Someone Else's Shoes.

Split custody with my ex. When my son was around 10, he visited two weekends a month. I was waiting tables and didn't have a huge amount to spend, but he was so needy from divorce (and I'm not blaming him, it was ugly), he begged constantly for MORE when he was with me. Whatever more was, it didn't matter... he'd be eating ice cream cone and begging for teriyaki.

I finally realized that he just felt empty, and getting MORE whatever from me wasn't filling him up. His next visit I handed him $100 in cash and told him it was our food/fun budget for 3 days and two nights, and he was in charge of it. I bought him his own wallet to carry. We figured out how many times we were going to eat and what we were going to do, and he paid. He got to keep whatever money he had left...thought he was rich...then realized just how much everything cost. Well. Shoe on other foot then. If we had no money for food, we ate leftovers - and I didn't contribute more to pot. After a few weekends of running short or not getting something he actually wanted because he was foolish with funds, he started to really think about how to spend that money. He budgeted and kept to his budget. And a few times he actually went home with a little cash for his private stash.

Many years later, he thanked me for this. It really changed the way he thought about money and love.


This Is Worth Giving A Shot

Took my 3 year old son to one of those doctor's visits where he was going to get a shot. He was worried about the shot on the whole drive over, almost to the point of tears. We get to the doctor's office and a nurse subtly lets me know that my son is not just scheduled for 1 shot, but 5 of them in the same visit.

I turn to my son with an exaggerated smile and tell him, "Good news! They figured out how to take that one big shot you were going to get and instead break it up into these 5 little tiny shots so it won't hurt nearly as much!"

You could see the relief wash over his face. He stopped squirming and relaxed completely. He took the first shot and even smiled and said "It's true! The small ones don't hurt!"

We actually made it through the third shot before the effect wore off and reality kicked in. Still... I counted it as a victory.


Put This To The Taste


My mom would tell me she only lets me eat soup after candy and she'd only buy me candy that i didn't like. After a few times, i stopped trying and begged her to let me eat soup first. She gave me a smirk and told me go ahead. This doesn't sound as evil as it was. But trust me i suffered.


So what was the candy?


Mint chocolate, raisins, stuff like that. I still hate them to this day. Who the f--- thought while eating chocolate "hmm id like some tooth paste with this."


This is Truckin' Awesome

Mum had sworn a bit around the house.

When 4, while out at the supermarket, I said F word really loudly.

Very quickly and intently, she asked if I had just said "Truck" and said that was a bad word and not to ever say Truck like that again.

I thought that was the bad word so used that when being naughty.


The "Silly Mom" Routine

The "Silly Mom" routine.

My kid, and a few other kids I've known, would balk at getting ready to go. I'd grab their clothes and say, "Well, if you won't put on your clothes, I guess I'll put on your clothes. Cute shirt, by the way! Does it go on my foot?"


"Does it go on my head?"


"Oh, that's right, thanks! So, it must go on your legs, right?"


"I just can't figure this out! Where does this adorable shirt go?"

[kid grabs shirt and puts it on] ON MY TUMMY! SILLY MOM!

"Oh, thank you so much! Now what about these pants? Shirts go on tummies, so...the pants go on the tummy, too, right?"


[continue until kids have dressed themselves]

I would also do things like hand the kid my keys and say, "Alright, you're driving, I'll sit in the booster seat in back," attempt to feed the kid by putting a spoon up to his ear or his belly button, and attempt to put away his toys in the refrigerator.


Some Foot For Thought.


My mum would always yell at us "if you don't do X, you have to go to bed without socks!"

I never wore socks anyway, and I'm ashamed to admit that this worked.


That would work really well on my son, or make him cry for a really long time... He's 3 and over the last few weeks has decided that he is fully unable to sleep without socks on.


Toddlers man. Completely unpredictable.


I'm Greens With Envy

My mum had a friend that would put vegetables on her own plate and not the kids.

When the kids asked she would be reluctant to share, "that's grown up food. But I suppose I can let you have a little."

Her kids grew up loving vegetables.

I sat at the dinner table for 3 hours staring at the yucky cauliflower I refused to eat.


This reminds me of an instance when my child convinced my wife and myself to change our plans for dinner. We were in a grocery store to pick up something quick and easy to eat that we wouldn't have to prepare. Our daughter, wanted none of that, she demanded that she wanted a salad from the salad bar. We started to argue back, but then realized: "Our child demands that we feed her vegetables for dinner instead of a microwaved meal, why are we saying 'No?'"

We had salad for dinner that night.


The Power Of Choice

I don't so much know if you would call it reverse psychology, but I didn't realize it until my dad told me this.

When there were chores that needed doing, he noticed if he asked me to mow the lawn, I would complain and procrastinate. But if he asked would I rather mow the lawn or wash the windows, I'd pick one and just get it done.

Shattered my brain when he told me when I was in my twenties. I use it when I'm coaching or baby sitting all the time and it almost never fails.


The Boy Who Cried 'Ouch'


I've done this one with tens of kids. Any time a kid gets "hurt" (falls down on grass, gets gently hit in the face with a ball, etc.) instead of stopping the activity to pick the kid up and see if they're ok you just scoot them off to the side and resume. Within 10 seconds of not getting all the attention and seeing the fun is resuming they pop right back up and are magically healed.

This of course is only for the "injuries" that aren't actually injuries.


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