Sunday, May 27, 2007

This dignity is marked $1. Will you take a quarter for it?

I like garage sales. I like to go to them and find unexpected treasures. I love the thrill of finding a really good deal. Garage sales can be lots of fun. That is, when you're not the one having it.

After the past three days of running a garage sale I've discovered that they're not all that great after all. In fact, they kind of suck. Is there anything more humiliating that sitting at your little card table while total strangers paw through your possesions and try to decided if any of it is worth their precious pocket change? It's not fun watching people turn their noses up at your stuff. It's a little upsetting when someone comes up to you and says "This stuffed animal/blanket/shirt/breast pump accessory kit was marked $1. Will you take 5 cents?" More than once I had to bite my tongue to keep from shrieking things like "That stuffed animal was the one my son got when he was in the hospital for three days with a flu and I was so sick myself that I couldn't even be there with him and he had to ride in the ambulance because I was too sick to drive and my mom had to come and stay in the hospital and she was there when the local VFW came and passed out early Christmas presents to the kids and they gave him a bag and inside was this toy and some nuts and and orange and he didn't eat any of that because he doesn't like nuts or oranges but he loved that stuffed moose and NO YOU CANNOT HAVE IT FOR 5 CENTS!"

Thankfully I never unloaded on anyone like that. I did tell lots of people "no" when they asked me to lower the price of something. I know that's kind of a breach of garage sale etiquette. Whenever I go garage saling I ask people to lower prices. They almost always say yes. So why didn't I do it? I don't know. I guess it's a combination of thinking that everything I own is precious and important and the fact that deep down in my soul I really kind of hate other people.

But 3 days of sitting at a card table and reading books that were supposed to be for sale did teach me a few things about people and they way they behave. I won't go into most of them because they're not very funny or interesting or even very PC in some cases. I will say this though: Old people are the worst garage salers ever.

Over the course of three days we had old people 1)ask us if they could take our neighbors recycling, 2)if they could buy our neighbor's canoe and 3)nag us about selling a power cord that was clearly not for sale. Repeatedly. Several times. Over the course of 2 days. Yes, when we told a guy we would not sell him a cord he actually came back and asked again the next day. His tactics to get us to sell it included saying things like "What are you ever going to do with it?" and "Come on! That would be really great for when I'm using my power washer!" Jesse was always very polite to the man when he told him he couldn't sell it him the cord. It's a good thing he dealt with him because if it was me I probably would have told him about this noew fangled thing called a "store" where you can go and get the things you want without having to harass people for it. Seriously, the guy would not let up. If our garge is ever broken into and our cord goes missing I'll know who to look for.

In closing, garage sales suck. But we did make about $300 and we got rid of a lot of stuff so I guess it's not so bad. I got a little sunburnt but I managed to get a lot of reading done. It's all good. Or rather, it would be all good if someone were to tell me that it was legal to slap people who come into your garage waving their stinky cigarettes all around your non-smaking-home stuff. Seriously people. Get a damned clue.

But yeah, it's all good.


nell said...

Ugh, I agree, a tag sale is only fun when you're not the one having it. But at least you made some money, that's always nice.

At our tag sale last year people just kept trying to buy the house. They'd ask if it was for sale, we'd say no, and they'd say, well, can I take a look around? I don't really hate people, but man, some of 'em sure can't take a hint, even when you spell it out for them.

melody said...

My idea of a great yard sale is dump all of my stuff by the curb with a sign "Free Stuff". If I clean it out, please don't ever make me look at it a second time.

Why is it everyone wants what they cannot have?

shyestviolet said...

...but you never answered my question: CAN I have your neighbor's recycling? :D