Guest Post: Antique Shopping

(This guest post was submitted by my GameCola co-collaborator and perhaps the world’s most famous Nancy Drew enthusiast, Michael Gray.)

Since Halloween is coming up, I thought it’d be a nice time to talk about yardsaling’s scary cousin: antique shopping.

You can see the family resemblance between antique shopping and yard sales. Both hobbies include sorting through piles of useless old junk that nobody wants anymore. But while yard sales are run by mostly normal people, antique malls are run by complete lunatics. In fact, if you’re ever at a yard sale where the sellers seem crazy, odds are that they’re just trying to impress the antique mall scouts.

You see, antique stores are just like the government. Everyone in charge is over fifty years old, and they have no idea how much things cost. For example, $50 for a Titanic VHS tape is a reasonable price at an antique store. On the other hand, something like an Xbox 360 game will go for two dollars, because the antiquers have no idea what to do with any products made in this century.

I recently visited an antique mall in Normal, Illinois. Conveniently located in a dead shopping center, this store contains proof that their town is poorly named.

This suit would either be a great Halloween costume, or the worst birthday present ever.

About $20 for the creepy salt and pepper shakers. I think the design for them was reused in Gnomeo and Juliet. Continue reading

Advertisements

Why Would You Buy That at a Yardsale?

There are certain things you just don’t want to buy second-hand. Soap, for example. It’s not all that uncommon to see people selling half-used bars of soap at yardsales, little strands of hair still clinging to them, colonies of bacteria forming right before your very eyes, only a few evolutionary stages away from becoming Rush Limbaugh. Also underwear. I didn’t take a picture of it, but at one of today’s sales, I found displayed quite prominently—reverently, even, neatly folded, placed next to a cooler in the shape of a Bud Light beer can—an enormous pair of granny panties. It was clear that the sellers thought this would be a big hit; I could just picture one musing to the other, “We’ll draw them in with the panties, and then hook them with our 90-year old bottle of gun oil, which is also a thing we are selling because we are ****ing crazy people.”

Another thing I’d add to the list? Adult diapers. You’d think that would go without saying, but…*ahem* I guess it just…depends:

I wonder how this ends up for sale at someone’s yardsale—like, how do you wind up with a 16-count package of adjustable adult underwear (with Velcro™ closers) that you don’t actually want? Maybe they were retired astronauts, and this was leftover from a previous mission. (Is that a thing? Do astronauts have to poop in their pants?) I mention this because the couple was also selling this “suit” which I am 95% sure is actually a prop from Space Cases:

Looking at the bullets on the front of the box (my favorite: “ONE SIZE FITS MOST!”), it’s clear they’re missing a few major selling points, like MAKES YOU LOOK LIKE YOU’RE WEARING A GARBAGE BAG!, and WHAT ARE THOSE TWO DANGLY THINGS FOR? NOBODY KNOWS! Continue reading

This Old House

Mmmmmmm. Can you smell that? Other people’s garbage. Unwanted wares, plopped unceremoniously into a yard or garage in hopes that someone with too much money to waste (although frugal enough not to buy things brand-new) will want to part with a quarter or a dollar for the honor of bringing home your rusty old fishing poles, or perhaps your fifth-grade art project.

The 2012 yardsale season starts not with a bang, but with a “Hey, is that a yardsale?” The weather report was calling for rain, so I’d assumed sales would be light-to-nonexistent this Saturday morn’, but lo: on the way to the supermarket, we found it. The season’s first sale. An estate sale, in a house that, from the outside looked nice, although from the inside, it appeared as though one errant stomp might send the whole thing crashing down.

We trod lightly.

Continue reading