My Thoughts On… Value

I wanted to talk a little bit about how I value things and how we, in general value things in our life – value theory.


Some time ago, I was asked a question “If the house were to catch fire, what would be the one object you’d run out with?”. Without hesitation, my reply was the Moonlyte Supergirl figure that I have sitting in my collection. Obviously, the asker (my dad) did not expect that response. They had expected something like “my passport” or “my university certificates”.

You can ask yourself this question right now and judge your own response. It is very likely that the item you choose to save from this hypothetical fire is your most prized, valued and loved possession.

It turned out into a fairly interesting conversation as my dad and I discussed it. My rationale for such a decision was simple:

You can replace passports and other government documents easily. Sure, they might be an extreme pain to replace. But somewhere, there exists a computer that says that I am a member of so-and-so country. All I have to do is go to the passport office and ask for a replacement. I fill up a few forms, pay a little money and that’s the end of the story. The same goes for university certificates. I can replace them, at a fee, with even fewer forms to fill, because the university has all my academic records.

But it is a very different story with the Moonlyte Supergirl figure. The figure is rare (I’m talking one of maybe 10 in existence), unique (it is the only one painted like this, making it a one-of-a-kind) and holds a lot of sentimental value (it was damaged during transport and I spent a long time trying to make sure it was repaired perfectly here). The statue is irreplaceable for me. There’s no amount of money that can make it come back if it were to disappear.

While one might argue that I have other things in my collection that are rare (and I do agree), they’re not irreplaceable. I can replace the comic books and other statues, even though if it means I have to spend more than I initially spent on replacing them. The only other thing that I have that is one-of-a-kind is the Vortex Marble. But that doesn’t really have sentimental value to me. I have no emotional attachment to it. And not only that, I’m pretty sure it the fire would do nothing to it. Those things are really tough.

The conversation did get me thinking a little bit about how I value things. I value things from my Supergirl collection much more than things from my other collections. I have an emotional attachment to the character. This is probably what causes me to value the Supergirl collection more than the other. But what I found even more interesting is I never assigned any measurable value to government documents and other certificates. I just never saw a point. I do not consider things that I can replace as valuable to me. Losing them would just be an inconvenience.

Money was also never a concern. I have physical money at home, but saving that was not a concern for me. Perhaps it is because I am fortunate enough to have enough money that losing a few thousand dollars is meaningless to me in the grand scale of things. Perhaps it is that I do not value money over other things that bring me joy. Let me just stop and say that I am by no means wealthy. I consider myself to be in the middle-class. I just have different priorities. I’m not too sure on that.

For me, it was a fairly clear-cut choice. The most valuable thing I own is one that I cannot replace. Everything else is just unimportant. In older days, perhaps in the age before computers, where losing your passport could mean you may never own a passport ever again, it is possible that my decision might be different. But in this day and age, where everything and everyone is so connected, losing such documents is just a minor inconvenience more than anything.

Of course, I’ve left animals and people out of this whole issue entirely, because such issues also calls forth a discussion on ethics and morality. For now, I’ve limited this post to how I value my possessions over each other, and I think I’ve done a decent enough job to convey my thought process.

So, how do you value your possessions? Is there something that you value higher than anything else? Why so? Let me know in the comments!

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