Hard to imagine a finer example of conspicuous consumption than this ... and in Moscow:
Before the news of the odd fruits’ arrival to fancy Moscow markets was reported, the price of square watermelons imported from Japan was holding steady at a mere $700. But ever since word hit the street, the price has shot up to around $860 — for a single watermelon.
But the best part, as Melissa Breyer writes for Mother Nature Network is that:
... the melons sent to Russia are picked before they are ripe, the BBC notes – making them inedible.
So people are not buying them to eat them but to prove that they can. Call it the triumph of Veblinism.