AMERICANA: Real Dirt

San Francisco Entrepreneur Gary Dahl sold a million Pet Rocks at $4 each in 1975. This month, after three years of living off his profits, Dahl is returning to the packaged humor market with a new product: one-inch-square acrylic cubes of Red Dirt, to be sold at $5.95 each.

Dahl says the dirt comes from mainland China clinging to the roots of flowers and vegetables shipped to Hong Kong. Says Dahl: "If enough Americans buy a square inch of Red China dirt, before long we'll have removed the entire country from under their noses. What I'm proposing is one of the...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!