It's all a scam:
In his book, Tonello, 49, an Osterville native, reveals how he cracked the code for jumping the waiting list to purchase Birkins whenever he pleased. Naturally, this code has something to do with large amounts of cash. When Tonello first attempted to purchase a Birkin at Hermès, he was told that the store had none available. But when he later visited a store and spent thousands on Hermès merchandise such as scarves and jewelry, he found that stores would suddenly have the coveted Birkins in stock.
. . .
A spokeswoman for Hermès said there is no system or trick for purchasing a Birkin. She said it's simply a matter of forming a relationship with the store and working with an associate to track down one of the bags when they become available. Because the bags are handmade, she said there are limited numbers available. A single Birkin - depending on the material - can take up to a week to complete.
"There was a waiting list at one time," says Bernice Kwok-Gabel. "But we realized the whole concept of a waiting list may be off-putting for some customers."
(thanks, sewing divas)