How a juvenile insult became an Edmonton man's living.
Brady Grumpelt, business savant. Photo by Mack Lamoureux.
Brady Grumpelt holds his glass high.
"Gentlemen, to evil," he proclaims, and with that we down our shot of Jameson.
He's pretty nonchalant for a man who earned $80,000 off gummy dicks in one day.
On March 4, while half cut on whiskey, Grumpelt bought the domain dicksbymail.com hoping to have a little corner of the internet where anyone can pump in $20 and, as a result, a person of their choosing would receive a literal bag of peckers alongside a letter instructing the reciever to eat them. It all started out as a simple joke that Grumpelt came up with at his bartending job on Whyte Ave. Initially, the idea was far more vulgar than it's current state. The first version involved sending someone, not gummy pricks, but a cheap dildo with a letter that said "go fuck yourself." Grumpelt felt that might of been a tad extreme and decided instead to go with the willies. It was a good idea, one that got Grumpelt a few sales here and there. That all changed when one of his friends, one of the first recipients of a bag of choads, took a picture and posted it on imgur.
That's when the internet lost its collective weiner-loving mind.
The post was seen over 400,000 times, and the orders started rolling in. On the first day $1000, then $30,000 on the second, and $80,000 on the third. It just kept going, and within a few days, Grumpelt sold over $150,000 worth of schlongs. It got to the point that Grumpelt didn't really know what to do. (Editor's note: Buy a fucking house, dude.)
"When you go from a joke that does like six orders in a week or two to $1,000 a day, it's crazy," Grumpelt told VICE. "I said to myself, 'OK, I've got to order myself a bunch of dicks.' When you do $30,000 the next day you basically don't have to look at dicks again, it just get's so big so fast I just knew I had to find somebody else to do this stuff for me."
He set out to find a supplier in the US, where the majority of the sales were taking place. He put thought into his product: "You want it to be a little bit veiny but not to graphic," he told me. He was, in essence, on the look for the Rolls Royce of gummy one-eyed-trouser-snakes, and he found just that. It was with a supplier that sold gummy cocks for bachelorette parties and he immediately started buying. He did the math, and if he put all the beef bayonets he's recently ordered in his household "it would fill up our entire basement, four inches deep, with dicks."
He gave me a bag and the baby-makers are mighty tasty; they taste like those little gummy dinosaurs. But while reaching into his backpack to retrieve the members, Grumpelt missed a call.
"Oh, I've got Texas calling me," he said after looking at the phone.
Apparently the callers from Texas are interested in buying the site. Grumpelt has dicksbymail.com up for auction on Flippa, a website/business-selling site. He had an offer that was above his reserved price of $100,000 but the bidder was a fraud and essentially ruined the auction for Grumpelt, so he now has to deal with buyers over the phone. He wouldn't tell me the exact price the aforementioned Texaan offered, but he did say that they met the reserve price, meaning it was at least $100,000. However, he doesn't know if he'll sell the baloney pony business just yet.
"Essentially, if I filled the orders myself, I could be making in the neighbourhood of $120,000 to $130,000 on what there currently is, and then a little bit more going into the future," he told me. "A lot of people online have been saying this has slowed down. It's slowed down to $5,000 a day, and if anybody wants to tell me how slow $5,000 a day is, then they're welcome to."
During his time talking to Texas about his tallywhacker company for a possible $100,000 he orders us another round with a wave. As I said, he's very nonchalant about this kind of stuff.
Grumpelt is big, tall, bald, down-to-earth guy, one who is quick with a joke and a laugh. The 29-year-old openly admits that he's lucky, and he doesn't complain about the stress that comes from being thrust into this weird position. He tells me he's not going to quit his job bartending and is going to use the money to start another company. A company that may be a little more sustainable than a heat-seeking-love-missile–focused one. He describes the idea as the airbnb for bartenders. That said, he does have some other plans for the wedding-tackle capital before putting it to good use.
"Myself and my best friend, who are going to be using this money to start another business, I think we're just going to have a money fight," he explained. "So we're going to have like ten or 15 thousand dollars in like 20, and just throw piles of money at each other because it will be fun. How many times do you get to do that?"
Before the money fight, before anything, he's going to pay back his father who he had to borrow some cash from when the hosepipe business started skyrocketing. Grumpelt said it was a little awkward arranging the deal, as his dad, who's a little conservative minded, won't call the pork-swords by their name—or by any of their many euphemisms.
"He says: 'products,'" Grumpelt said. "He'll ask me, 'How's your business going?' I always say 'Bag of dicks? The bags of dicks are going well, dad.'"
Indeed they are. The bag of dicks game seems to be going just fine for Grumpelt.
Dick count: 11
Dick euphemism count: 15
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