/yard sale sign/


Got up at 8:17AM, made it out driving by 8:30AM (Burger King breakfast break: 9:00-9:23AM) and went out until 11:40AM for a total of 2 hours, 47 minutes (we found out the clock in the car only runs while driving, so it turns out this was 1hr, 54min of driving, and about 53min out of our car at yard sales).

We spent a paltry $4.25 plus $9.61 gas for 36.1 miles of driving (14.5 mpg @ $3.86/G), for a total cost of $13.86. That SUCKS that 70% of the cost is just driving around looking for the yard sales! This week was particularly bad.

We obtained 26 items — 48 if you count each bar of soap and gift bag separately — for a total estimated value of $124.42, leading to a profit/savings of $110.56. Anyway, this works out to a *post-tax* “wage” of $39.72/hr as a couple or $19.86/hr per person. Despite the low amount of  sales, a lot of the stuff we got this week was completely free.


ACHIEVEMENT UNLOCKED: Drive-by megaphone-heckling of abortion clinic protesters!!!!!!! (All of whom looked like fucking relics about to die. Can’t wait ’til they do.)

WHERE ARE THE SALES? We changed our circuit a bit, and it took us everywhere without us seeing hardly any sales! We could have had 90% of our take in 30 minutes had we simply quit while we were ahead. But we ran our circuit, and it was possibly the longest driving with the least sales in a long, long, long time. Nothing on all of Rolling Rd from Jaxx Nightclub all the way to Braddock Rd? Don’t think I’ve EVER seen that.

And MORE RETARDED SIGNMAKERS — only about 10% of signs we saw even had a friggin’ arrow on them. Yes, we ripped down at least one this week again, trying to save other people from wasting gas on wild goose chases.

It becomes more and more apparant to us that bad sign = out of touch person = loser = shitty yard sale with shitty stuff.
Of course, bad sign also means less people will find it, so if there is anything good, it’s more likely to still be there by the time you arrive. But the tradeoff doesn’t seem worth it.
Stick to the upscale neighborhoods. If people can’t be bothered to put an arrow on a sign, for the most part they are not going to have good stuff worth buying.


  • $1.00: cats: EmeryCat scratching board (identical to two we already have that Oranjello loves – these are arched instead of straight, which makes them waaaaaaaay more appealing to cats) ($20 new, but missing the catnip and cat toy, so we’ll call it $18) (we got one for Christmas, and one at a yardsale previously on 4/11/11)
    product image 
  • $1.00: sign, tin, Second Amendment, 16×13″ (EV:$8) (for Matthew)
  • $1.00: headphones (2), no brand ($0.50/ea) (EV:$6) (Carolyn’s work headphones keep dying)
    Sennheiser HD 201 - headphones - Ear-cup, Binaural 
  • $0.50: soap (5), Earlsley & Windsor, 40g, circular bars (5 @ $0.10/ea) (300 bars cost $105, so 5 would be $1.75) (been years since we bought soap at full price!)
    EWE-C40PW Executive 40gm Soap - Earlsley & WindsorEXECUTIVE Soa  
  • $0.50: game, Rummikub, 1997 version (EV:$13) (2010: learn game; 2011: fail to find it yardsaleing all year, put on wishlist, get for christmas; 2012: find it right away! argh! This will be a gift to other family who’s played it with us but doesn’t own it)
  • $0.25: spatula, Ekco, beige, plastic (EV:$1)
  • $FREE: book, U.S. Acres: I Wasn’t Hatched Yesterday, Book 1, by Jim Davis, 1989 ($2.50) ($2.50, but only counting it as $2.27 because that’s what you can get it for) (can’t believe the ‘middle cartoon’ from Garfield & Friends has a book… does Jim Davis’s greed know no bounds?)
  • $FREE: pillows, zebra print, 2  (Found the exact match! $10 each == $20 for 2) (These are awesome. They were in a box that we thought was marked FREE. Clint told the sale-runner that. But when we got home, we found they both had a $5 price tag on them. Oops.)
    Zebra Print Decorative Pillow 
  • $FREE: ribbon, Gift Curl, 60ft., silver ($1.19)
  • $FREE: ribbon, Gif-Tye Designer Finish, yellow (EV:$1)
  • $FREE: ribbon, Berwick Splendorette Curl, 9/16″x500yd, celadon (EV:$1.92)
  • $FREE: ribbon, Berwick Splendorette Curl, 9/16″x500yd, teal (EV:$1.92)
  • $FREE: ribbon, Norcross Lustre-tie, 3/4″x28′, olive green ($0.35)
  • $FREE: ribbon, red ($4.50) (so much free ribbon, gift bags, and such.. we usually reuse ours each Christmas, but a lot of them went away unopened last year, so it was good to find all this stuff for free)
  • $FREE: wrapping paper, Current Happily Ever After, 4 sheets, 24″x30″, code 22776-6 (EV:$1)
  • $FREE: wrapping paper, American Greetings, metallized premium wrap, 8.33 sq ft, GW1403G ($2.25)
  • $FREE: wrapping paper, bag of misc, about 7 sheets (EV:$1)
  • $FREE: bags (gift bags), 19 total various (some had prices: $1.00, $0.79, $1.85, $0.50, $1.00, $2.95, $2.45, $4.99, $1.29, which averages out to $1.868 each,which we will multiply by 19 to get: EV:$35.49)
  • $FREE: bag, cloth bag, blue, with stars, seems like a wine-sized gift bag (EV:$1)
  • $FREE: bag, gift bag, Happy Birthday Mom ($.50)
  • $FREE: gift bow, Berwick Ind. Inc., RT440008 (EV:$0.03)
    Berwick Offray #74000 25CT Traditional Star Bow Bag
  • $FREE: tissue paper, bag of (EV:$0.25)
  • $FREE: meat tenderizer, wooden (EV:$1) (Carolyn apparently needed one of these)
  • $FREE: spoon, serving, Ekco (EV:$1)
  • $FREE: fake pearl decoration thing that was in with the gift bags (EV:utterly worthless)

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* EV stands for “Estimated Value”, which I estimate by looking things up in Google Shopping/Google/Amazon/Ebay. I don’t always deduct for an item being used, unless it’s actually in worse condition in a way that matters. For example, I estimate books at the cover value, unless they are free/bad condition in which case I may try to get a used price. But in terms of usability, I don’t think used books are worth much less than new books. You can still read them. I also try to only count shipping if it’s the type of thing that would need to be shipped, and only if the price isn’t “rigged” (i.e. 1 cent items that cost $10 to ship would not be $10 in person). (more…)