I noticed on Facebook that the official Hot Wheels Collectors website opened up memberships for this year’s Red Line Club (RLC). I decided to join.
It’s been years since I was an RLC member. I know I joined during the inaugural year. I think it was 2002. I joined the following year too.
What does membership to the Red Line Club entail?
Joining the RLC allows you the privilege of buying special Hot Wheels cars made available throughout the year. In other words, it’s a grift. I paid $9.99, so Mattel can sell me super-special fancy Hot Wheels cars. This benefit began yesterday when I bought this year’s RLC Membership Car, the ’70 Mustang Boss 302.
I paid $20 for the car, $9.99 for the membership, and $6.95 for shipping.
When I was a member in times past, I received a plastic membership card. What was I supposed to do with it? I know from personal experience it cannot be used as ID when buying pseudoephedrine-based products at the CVS pharmacy.
This is especially true when the RLC card is expired.
I feel like I might not get a physical card this year. They refer to the membership as a “digital” membership. Companies tend to call something digital in the marketplace when it lacks a physical state.
Why I decided to join the RLC this year
Although I’m not nearly as active in collecting Hot Wheels vehicles as I was in years past, I still occasionally buy Hot Wheels vehicles when I see something I like. I’ve become a fan of the Hot Wheels Premium “Car Culture” models. They feature better paint jobs, real rubber tires, and a metal base and body.
The Car Culture vehicles cost around $5.75 at retail. I’ve paid more online for vehicles I wasn’t able to find at Walmart or Target. Because of the pandemic, I don’t even step foot in Walmart, let alone go there to look for toy cars. When I go into a store, I stay away from other people. That’s hard to do at Walmart. The aisles are long and narrow. They also put stuff in the main aisles, making it hard to keep a safe distance from other people. Compounding the problem, Walmart doesn’t even try to enforce the mask mandate.
I wanted to join the RLC this year because I wanted another avenue for buying Hot Wheels vehicles online. Living in Maryland, it’s going to take months before I can get vaccinated against COVID-19. To get vaccinated in Maryland, you have to be 65 years old, a teacher, a nurse, a doctor, a cop, a fireman, work in a grocery store, or a clergy member. Many people don’t meet any of those requirements yet are still getting vaccinated. For example, it turns out we have many more volunteer firemen in Maryland than anyone ever knew.
Here in Western Maryland, it all comes down to who you know or who you go to church with. I don’t know anyone important, and I don’t go to church. I will have to wait to get vaccinated for COVID-19.