I wrote a bio for one of my guilds/ union/ association/whatever, that began with the statement that no one has ever asked me for a bow tie or a hank of hair, something like that., because I am so little known that no one has ever wanted to get off on having something that once belonged to me. But now, someone has requested something for a fund-raiser: a pair of used shoes. This is assuming I have any to spare. I gave away my high-heeled shoes several years ago. I wear flip-flops to the pool; I wear moccasins around the apartment so as not to make a noise over lower-floor neighbours; my summer sandals are getting ratty, but I'll wear them till I get new ones on sale next July; my imitation Nikes are still good and I wear them almost every day for walking; I have Dr. Scholl's dancing slippers for dress-up indoors and a pair of skimmers for elsewhere. So you see I can't spare any shoes.
Why is it that when (if) people know who you are, they think you are rich? Even rich writers can't give away that much. Pierre Berton always tied his own beautiful bow ties. When people asked him for a bow tie, he gave them a clip-on one he bought (by the dozen) at a Dollar Store. (Woolworth's in those days) Most often, writers are asked for a signed copy of their latest book. That's expensive, too. People think you get unlimited copies of your book because after all, you wrote it. Well, I'm lucky to get 10 or 12 free copies for family and friends. I will admit that I can usually get a discount (about 10% of the retail price), but with the price of books these days, I"m still out of pocket and my pockets aren't that deep.
On the whole, it's better to be unknown, unsung, and ignored. I guess that's a perk.