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Sunday, June 1, 2008

Stoop Sale Diaries #1


So my husband and I are stoop sale freaks. We know all the regulars, buyers and sellers. (A shout out here to Leslie, we still have your picture frame) We have seen the demise of the taped flier, to be followed by sidewalk chalk and Craig’s listings. We can read a sale. Recent breakup – lots of the ex’s belongings going cheap and “how to buy a puppy” books. World traveler – Frommer’s, Rick Steves, Time Out wherever and lots of small wooden carvings. Out grown the quirky collection – Pez, rusty lunch boxes, ice cream scoops. Long time neighborhood resident – clothes for under a dollar, paperbacks 50 cents, haggling is a sport not an insult.

Here is the #1 rule of selling – every sale you will make is an impulse buy for your customer. It doesn’t matter that you paid too much for your item new, and then never used it. On the street it is worth $2. If you are in it for the money, you will do better on eBay. The tradition of stoop sales in my humble opinion (as a seller as well as a buyer) is to get the stuff out of your house and recycle to someone who will love it. The more you buy, the cheaper the price should be.

This is what we found on Sunday:
3 Christmas Cd's (including Paul Revere and the Raiders Christmas)
a free bottle opener/10 second digital recorder
Ultimate Outburst (in the plastic, for use at the family reunion this summer)
Glitter batons for the two little girls downstairs
A small fan for my hot head husband
A wireless router (ours just broke!)
A wooden massage roller
The Illustrated History of the British Invasion
Various necklaces
A bright pink velvet evening jacket with lots of details (great with skinny jeans and the pink ballet flats we got last spring)

Every week you will inexplicably see the same book title over and over at all of the sales. The title changes from week to week. Some randomness expert needs to write their PHD dissertation on this phenomenon. This week every sale had Time and Again by Jack Finney, a book we enjoyed and bought several copies of to give to friends. More than the usual Harry Potters were also present.

We had some great conversations too; where to camp, hitchhiking in the Pacific Northwest, the best places to eat in Sullivan County, what it is like to own an Airstream, neighborhood choirs. Whether you buy or not, it is the easiest way to make small talk with your neighbors. Stoop sales give me a reason to stroll in the beautiful weather with my sweetheart and love all my funky neighbors (except the costume jewelry guy that is at every sale 5 minutes ahead of me)
Happy shopping!

1 comment:

Margaret/Maggie Bryant said...

Time and Again....my FAVORITE book of all time! I don't read fiction usually but I LOVED this book. BTW, his follow up novel of time travel was AWFUL! Don't waste your time with it.

Can't wait to see yous guys in July!

Cousin Mags