Tuesday, September 19, 2006

For You, My Friend, $1

I never knew that people, grown-ups, grown-ups in posh parts of the San Fernando Valley who presumably make good money, because, hello! it costs a fortune to live there, would haggle with me over a quarter! A Quarter! GAAAH!

My siblings and I had our first ever garage sale this past weekend at my dad's house to continue the process of going through/dealing with/saving/getting rid of 40+ years of stuff.

It was exhausting.

And sorta fun.

And lucrative. (!)

Grand total from Saturday and Sunday: $1600!!! (Which we divided… $400 per person) Not too shabby.

The biggest shock was that people were willing to pay money for ABSOLUTE CRAP!!! Broken dishes, faded posters, old used coffee mugs, dirty stuffed animals, fanny packs, outdated cameras, half melted candles, a hideous orange back massager from the 70's that had definitely seen better days - you name it, they bought it. And then they came back for more! I'd say 40% of the people we saw on Sunday were repeat customers from Saturday! One lady - bless her heart, she was so sweet – brought us a loaf of fresh baked bread on her second visit. Too cute! And then she spent $2.50 on our garbage... I mean priceless antiques and knick knacks... we liked her.

In fact, we met (and liked) a ton of our neighbors, including one member of the once fabulous pop(ish) trio Wilson-Philips. Yep, she lives across the street... and she came by our garage sale. Twice!

Most people were great - a bit of bargaining here and there, definitely to be expected. But SOME people! Oh my! I literally haggled with one lady for a solid 2 minutes over a quarter!

Her: How much is this (brand new, in the package, broiling pan) thing?
Me: One dollar. (Such a deal!)
Her: I'll give you 50 cents.
Me: 50 cents!? It's brand new!! Never been used! It should be like 10 bucks! (Note to self – in future do better job of pricing things for garage sale)
Her: 50 cents.
Me: No!!! I'd rather not sell it.
Her: I'll give you 75 cents.
Me: Ummm.... no.
Her: Please. Please give me a deal. You HAVE to give me a deal.
(Ugh! I should have priced it at $10 and then been fabulous enough to give it to her for only $1. Note for next time.)
Me: No, absolutely not. Not for 75 cents. (I don't really want your change lady - please give me a whole dollar!)
Her: Please?
Me: No.
Her Please?
Me: Noooooo.

And then she proceeded to take 75 cents out of her wallet, place the coins in my hand, and walk off with my broiling pan.

And then again with the...
Her: Pleeeease. Please give me a deal.
(UGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. I'm arguing over a quarter.)
Me: Fine! Fine! Take it for 75 cents. (See if I care) But wait! Is that a (crusty, old, oddly shaped) cookie cutter in your other hand? You most certainly did NOT pay for that. It's a quarter!!! (HA!!) Now you have to give me a dollar!
Her: No. You gave it to me.
Me: What!?!
Her: Please, I need a deal.
(Kill me, kill me now.)

I snatch the cookie cutter out of her (filthy stealing) hand and look at it. What the hell is this, I think to myself. I literally cannot tell what shape cookie it would produce. It sort of looks like Quasimodo. But on crack. And maybe with an extra arm. I decide that I really don't want the thing and hand it back to her. As a gift. Because I'm *so* generous. And then I shoo her away before she steals anything else. Sheesh.

And that really was the worst of it. Most everyone else was sweet, and friendly, and more than happy to shell out a few bucks for the pleasure of hauling off our crap.

And my brothers and I had the best time selecting the "New Hot Item" of the moment - which, really, was just the most horrendous, unsellable, why would ANYONE want that, thing we could find - and seeing who could sell it first. We managed to sell (or at least give away as a "Free gift with puchase") each and every "New Hot Item" we selected. It was awesome.

All in all, I'd call the whole weekend a success.

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