We spoke too soon: New Yorkers are still lining up for two hours at a time at the Dominique Ansel Bakery in Soho to get their hands on the much-hyped hybrid pastry known as the cronut. The only difference now, according to The New York Post, is that a substantial number (if not the majority) of the individuals queuing up on Spring Street at 6 a.m. are being paid by other city dwellers who don't want to get out of bed before the sun rises. And, yes, the cronut capitalists — "industrious entrepreneurs who see plenty of dough to be made," as the Post describes them — have moved on to this line straight from another one: the unemployment line.
Now, paid-off line waiters are a well-known cohort on the steps of the Supreme Court and around Apple stores in China, and we already told you about the Craigslist black market for cronuts, but these pastry-line workers make arrangements to wait for hours, purchase a maximum of two cronuts, and finally deliver the croissant-donut creations to the highest bidder. While cronuts are currently going for around $50 per pastry (up from $20-$40 on Craiglist a month ago), the individuals waiting in line aren't quite yet making bank. The Post spoke to one line-waiter named Tawny, who was recently laid off and now keeps up with the bills by waiting on line for up to three hours and delivering, after paying for their own transportation, the donut-croissant mash-ups (she charges $70 for two, $80 for two to Brooklyn):
“We made 80 bucks today — that’s about $12 an hour,” she says.
Then her friend Janet corrects her: “Um, that’s $6 each.”
But with a daunting $1,200 rent to pay for her Gramercy Park pad, any extra cash helps.
We're not sure which is more unpleasant: the idea of spending $50 on a pastry that costs $5, or waiting in line for $6 an hour on behalf of someone you met on Craigslist. Then again, the circumstances surrounding the cronut's production more or less determined this would happen.