In these days of, say, a 128-year-old Santa Ana Fire Department disbanding due to budget constraints and fellow agencies' city governments also contemplating contracting fire services out to the Orange County Fire Authority, one can be excused for assuming a certain product hawked on eBay right now is brand new.
But the “Orange County Fire Station for Sale” t-shirt–starting bid: $12.99–is actually vintage.
As the eBay ad informs, the highest bid is being sought for a “rare,” white, extra large, 100 percent cotton pre-shrunk shirt that was hot “when the County Of Orange had major
budget problems in the 1990s.”
Climb up on gramp's knee and let him tell ya 'bout Orange County of the mid-'90s becoming the first municipality in the country to declare bankruptcy. That was famously after officials dismissed John Moorlach, a harsh critic of the county treasurer and predictor of pending financial doom, as a chicken little. Moorlach was, of course, right, he later replaced treasurer Bob Citron and JM's now chairman of the county Board of Supervisors.
Humorously, the type on the t-shirt informs interested fire station buyers to contact the Board of Supervisors, which these days would again be in a selling mood–and Moorlach would throw in a couple or seven firefighter pensions at no extra charge!
Peruvians will be pleased to learn from the ad, “International customers welcome.”
For the tee, not the firehouse.
Matt Coker has been engaging, enraging and entertaining readers of newspapers, magazines and websites for decades. He spent the first 13 years of his career in journalism at daily newspapers before “graduating” to OC Weekly in 1995 as the paper’s first calendar editor. He went on to be managing editor, executive editor and is now senior staff writer.