Garage sales apparently make me Bipolar. I spent 3 days last weekend having a garage sale. Is there no bigger Hell on Earth that is yet so very gratifying? Putting out your items, having people approach your private residence and manhandle your possessions while openly judging your taste in decorating, yet expect you to make small talk as you hope they give you money (which is the gratifying part) to take said item away with them to never be seen again?
I am very torn about garage sales. I was never really a big fan of them as a kid when my Grandmother would take me to sale after sale after sale…….As an adult, I never go to them. Honestly, I am not even really a fan of holding my own garage sales. Well, except for the money exchanging hands part. That’s cool. I have nothing against people who participate in this ingenious cultural phenomenon and most of the people I spoke with are genuinely nice and great conversationalists. Would our paths have crossed in society without said garage sale? Probably not. Was it nice to meet new neighbors people and in my town? Actually, yes. Many people lead very interesting lives. Would I ever want to hang out with 95% of them? No. (Ok, some sorta creepy, I am not gonna lie. I would try to work into the conversation the “3 BIG dogs” that I own. Not always easy to do tactfully). You also learn many things about people that make you want to look up Dr. Phil’s phone number and slip it in the bag of goodies and treasures they just purchased.
Garage sales. Not only is it a way to clean out the house of items I no longer want (and some I could not imagine anyone would buy, but when you slap on a .10 cent sticker onto an item, it is suddenly the biggest find of the century). It is funny though, the first day of the sale, you are not willing to negotiate. You are convinced your crap is worth wayyyyy more than anyone else’s crap at any other sale. You are going to rake in the cash. You are insulted by a cheap patron who wants to haggle the price of a $1.50 table cloth! How dare they?! Do they not understand all of the important and momentous occasions that took place during the Holidays while this priceless fabric draped across the family table? Can they not imagine how many stories were told, laughs that filled the air and the tears that were shed all in the presence of this precious cloth? “No, madam, I will not take less than $1.50! That is a bargain and I refuse to lower.” You find yourself consoling the sad fabric and try to reassure it that the right new home will come along soon who will fully appreciate its worth and value. Fast forward to day 3, “Hey, you want that table cloth? It’s free! Just take it with you! No, really, no charge!! I don’t care if it isn’t your style, take it home anyway and use it as a rag….No wait, come back, TAKE THE &#^$%@ TABLE CLOTH FOR THE LOVE OF GOD!”
It was a very long weekend and a lot of work. In between doing the happy money dance there were times I was convinced that I must have died already, landed in purgatory only to be forced into conducting a garage sale that never ends. *Shiver*
Was it successful? Very! Would I want to hold another one anytime soon? Heeeelllllll no! But for anyone who wants to hold one, have at it! No judgment here! Heck, where else can you get paid to people watch while they help you spring clean!? And, ohhhhhh the stories you can tell. Almost worth as much as the Tupperware dish you tried to sell, but could not find the lid, so you marked it down half price. And you still didn’t sell that dang piece of useless plastic. Don’t act like that has never happened to you. Ok, maybe not the best example.
In conclusion, a public THANK YOU to all who purchased belongings I no longer wanted and never want back. And to the person who originally came up with such an idea, I would first give you a huge hug and then swiftly follow up with a kick to the crotch.