When New York freelancer and performance artist Mike Albo—perhaps best known for his hilarious The Underminer book and videos—contributed to the “Critical Shopper” column of the New York Times’ Style section, it gave those pages some real-person credibility they are often sorely lacking. Albo was—is—a broke-artist type whose thrift-store wardrobe had more to do with necessity than downtown hipness, and his awareness of the peculiarity of his presence in boutiques where expensive merchandise is carefully curated and artfully displayed, combined with his genuine appreciation of the goods, gave his work an enjoyable tension. Especially if, like him, your ability to actually buy something at one of those stores was about as frequent as the appearance of a comet.