/yard sale sign/


Instead of our usual 7-9 planned stops, we had 19! NINETEEN!!! Suffice to say.. We missed 6 of them. Mostly due to our GPS dying and not being able to find anything around Telegraph Rd., with it’s stupid construction. Got up around 8AM, had breakfast PLUS Carolyn packed some sandwiches so we wouldn’t have to stop to eat lunch.

Made it out driving by 8:25AM, and went out until 2:58PM (!!) for a total of 6 hours, 33 minutes [a record for this year].

(Time breakdown: Driving: 3hr 44min [57%]. Saleing: 2hr 49min [43%].)

Spent $75.75 plus ~$17.57 gas for 69.1 miles of driving (14.2 mpg @ $3.61/G), for a total cost of $93.32.

We made 41 purchases, getting 75 items (wayyy more items if you were to count each piece of sandpaper and the 20 various My Little Pony combs and non-pony toys, but no, NOT doing that).

The total estimated value for all these items is $919.72 (!!!), leading to a profit/savings of $826.40.

So in essence, we multiplied our investment by 9.86X. (Also, the profit counts for even more when you consider that we have to earn $908 on the job to get the $826 in cash we saved.)

Anyway, this works out to a *post-tax* “wage” of $126.17/hr as a couple or $63.08/hrper person!! A record for this year.

20120603 - yardsale booty - 0 - our full haul - IMG_4279


Coolest thing I didn’t buy? A motherboard clock! It was a clock set on a microwaved CD with gemstones, in a blue stained-glass terrarium that contained a motherboard and some batteries. Very cool, but a space-taker. We could have maybe replaced one of our more-generic lamps with this, but we don’t pay more than $2 for lights as a general rule, and this was $10. Considered buying it for my sister. We knew we’d regret not buying it, but Carolyn’s insistence on not going to the bank over and over for weeks despite having $0 cash helped sway us away from it.

I swear this one guy was high. He was 55-65ish, grey/white hair, and had the best taste in dvd collecting I’ve ever seen, 10X more so for a whitehead: Super Troopers, Space Ghost Coast To Coast, Mr. Show, Spaced (UK), Jackass. I mentioned that I’d pay $5 for VHS players (which is no longer the case, my new price ceiling is $3), and he went inside for a long time to look at one. I really didn’t want to wait and kinda just wanted to drive off. He held me hostage. He came out all smiley and was talking about how I’m his twin and think just like him. They also had a bag of My Little Ponies that we got. In the end, I was like…. “That guy MUST have been high. Really. WTF. He was so out of it.”

Saw Rogelio again! 3rd time now! He wasn’t wearing a comic book shirt this time. He showed me some of the stuff he bought again. He always asks about trading. That is weird to me, becuase I mostly only buy stuff I want for myself, or for my friends. I told him I’d probably never trade in any situation ever, and am more of a hoarder. He said sorry for not responding to my email before. I said sorry for accidentally inviting him to Google+. He was near our friends Brad & Mandy’s house, which is farther from where he was the 1st 2 times we saw him. Maybe he’ll email us. I’d hang out with him.

Eavesdropping-Daughter-Agent! At a Hispanic yard sale, The Dad had bad/no English. The Dad was having trouble engaging in commerce with Black Guy Who Did Not Speak Spanish. I see a rice cooker. I ask Carolyn if we should get it, so that we have two. “Maybe we can boil vegetables in it while making rice in the other one or something? Plus, what if the 1st one breaks.” Carolyn said she would only pay $1. I told her: “We paid $5 for the last one, and this one is better.” But she said since we have one, we shouldn’t pay as much. So finally I decide ask The Dad how much, but Eavesdropping-Daughter-Agent was apparently standing by us, eavesdropping, pretending to be a random kid. She interjects before her dad even hears us, and says, “$3“. RIGHT in the middle of what me & Carolyn were talking about. You were listening to us, weren’t you?, I asked… But she did not answer. So I get it for $3. Then Black Guy Who Did Not Speak Spanish was like, “I was going to buy that!” “Five dollars!”, I yell back as we walk away. Everyone has a good-spirited laugh. I pick up the pace ever-so-slightly in case he thinks I was serious. He, too, had a strange accent–I think he was French?!

We’re Such Creepers. Hot girl getting out of car, and we’re rolling down the road a bit slowly looking for the sale we’re headed toward. She’s bending down or getting out of her car or something, and we were already going pretty damns low, so she kinda does this side-glance and catches Carolyn & me both checking her out. You had to be there, but it was hilarious. We were totally creeping on her. Her expression was priceless.

Telegraph road sucks!!! There’s a reason we always avoided sales over there. We tried to venture forth into new territory. I realize now, with 19 stops, that’s greedy. 10 planned stops is a more manageable amount. We ended up with the least efficient hour of the whole shift. It seems that east of 395 is very much “the wrong side of the tracks” for sales. There are actually some nice neighborhoods over there, but it’s hell getting to them without a GPS. So I’m asking this guy how to get to Old Telegraph, and this Brazilian lady interjects into the conversation and proceeds to give us the wrong directions… I talk to her because she’s hotter than some dude, but it was a mistake, causing a 20-40 minute delay in reaching our next sale. Later I ran into her. I didn’t call her on it directly, but I said Hi, which made her ask about her directions, and I told her no, the directions didn’t really help. Her response? “My directions were right; somebody turned the sign around.” Yeah right. Then she showed me rings she paid $50 for at sales, casting futher doubt on her general credulity as a person.

Crazy-big sale at the very end. Not even a planned destination. We were so ready to go home, but then we saw a sign on a sidestreet a half-mile from our house. Tons of really useful stuff. A whole double-length carport full, with another few tables of stuff. And this was at like 2-3PM!. I can’t imagine how good the spread must have been at 8AM! The guy maybe was a general contractor, given the variety of various speicalized tools he had, and no longer wanted. He apparently owned two houses? His answer to everything was “one dollar” (except the $10 battery charger). He was French, I think, and had other French people stopping by while we were at the sale. Pretty useful stuff.

The Rerun Folks. The first sale was a community set-of-9-sales up by my Granparents’ (RIP) old house off Seminary Rd. I’d never yardsaled up there, but it was a community sale, and those can be gold, especially in an upscale neighborhood like my grandparents’. We asked some random people getting into their car where to get a map of the individual sales, and they told us where the Other Sale With A Map was. So we went there, saw them, said hi, perused the sale, and took a map. Planned our sub-route (To clarify, 9 stops at this community represent just 1 of the 19 stops on our itinery.) … 8 sales later, we’re wrapping back around to get out of the community, which required passing the Other Sale WIth A Map. THE PEOPLE WHO TOLD US ABOUT IT WERE STILL THERE. As I drove by, I slowed down, beeped, and yelled, “You’re still here?!?!”. They waved back once the delayed recognition kicked in. They’re definitely doing it wrong. You can’t linger too much. Showing up 5 seconds later can make the difference between a once-in-a-lifetime purchase happening and not happening. You can’t dick around and hang out (unless they are Jamaicans who are giving you free beer–true story from the past). You really need to go as fast as possible to get to the most sales and opportunity as much as possible. Did they have to let it linger? Did they have to? Did they have to?

Helpful Ninja Kid. He came up and touched Carolyn’s hand while she was getting into her car. She had no idea he was approaching. He scared her and she yelped, hehehe. “Do I know you?”, he asked. [Are you trying to pick up my wife? She doesn’t really go for 6 year olds, sorry.] Then he told us it was a community yardsale and there were more sales up the street. He was very helpful and quite in control of the situation, especially for a 6 year old. So we were able to get the dolly and the rosemary because of this kid. Neato.

Forgetfu. At one sale, I was thinking about buying a game for future-Sagan, and asked Carolynabout it. “You already bought that game for Sagan…today! It’s in the car as we speak!” Oops! The people at the sale, as well as us, had a laugh.


  • $10.00: battery charger/engine starter, DieHard, battery and alternator tester, model#200.71225 (EV:$79.99) – This will represent a SERIOUS upgrade from the gray, 1970s, analog, rusted charger my dad gave me.

20120603 - yardsale booty - 7 - towing mirrors, battery charger engine starter - IMG_4323

  • $7.00: dvds: Super Troopers (EV:$8.31), Orgazmo (EV:$5.30), Spaced (UK) [complete series] (EV:$38.89, $43.83) AUTOGRAPHED BY SIMON PEGG AND NICK FROST!!! DIDN’T NOTICE UNTIL I OPENED IT 2 MONTHS LATER!! will have to add some arbitrary value ($20?) to my estimated value total for 2012, Jackass: The Movie: Special Collector’s Edition (EV:$5.14), Space Ghost Coast To Coast – Volume 2 (EV:$4.99), Mr. Show – 1st & 2nd Seasons (EV:$5.82), Mr. Show – 3rd Season (EV:$7.66), Mr. Show – 4th Season (EV:$7.43) – I have VERY LITTLE USE for movies in shitty dvd quality; these are bought just for the dvd extras, which we watch during dinner. I am remiss to report I only freed up 1 slot in my Netflix queue due to this purchase.

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Later, we discovered the Spaced dvds were autographed by Simon Pegg & Nick Frost!!!! Big DERP on the seller’s part for not realizing that:

20120805 - autographed Spaced DVD - IMG_4805
20120805 - autographed Spaced DVD - IMG_4804

  • $5.00: electric blanket, with sleeves, blue, Ion Coz-e (EV:$17.77) – basically an electric snuggie

20120603 - yardsale booty - 7 - electric snuggie - IMG_4348

  • $5.00: keyboard, Yamaha PSR-180, 36.375×13″, with nice stand, sheet music holder (EV:$69.99 + $38.79 for a comparable stand on Ebay=$108.78!!) – My $5-at-a-yardsale Casio SK-1 synthesizer is officially ousted! Now I’ve got a REAL keyboard!!

20120603 - yardsale booty - 2 - keyboard - IMG_4356
20120603 - yardsale booty - 2 - keyboard - IMG_4357

  • $5.00: microphone stand, fullsize, adjustable, AKG Acoustics brand (EV:$30.00) – Damn this is nice. Previously people had wrapped quarter-inch microphone cord around my spiral stairs to tie the mic up. Not elegant, and damaging to the cord. A proper, adjustable mic stand is soooo much better.

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  • $5.00: rosemary, home-grown, LARGE parmesan cheese bottle full (EV:Hard! I measured with my scale: 184g, which is 6.49049oz. It’s $13.69/oz where we normally buy our groceries. So that’s $88.85 of rosemary, with the added benefit of being fresh.) – we JUST ran out of Rosemary for the 1st time I can remember in this house. I think we’re set for the next decade or so.

20120603 - yardsale booty - z - fresh rosemary, inflatable camping bed - IMG_4351

  • $3.00: dvd player, Sony, Model# DVP-S560D, Serial# 0862010 (EV:$46.00) – $3 for a dvd player? Why have I been paying $5 for VHS players? Time to change my price ceiling! No longer willig to spend more than $3 on VHS players!

20120603 - yardsale booty - 7 - DVD player, Pyrex - IMG_4314

  • $3.00: Pyrex, 5-piece set, circular dish set with lids, 1qt (circular), 2c (2) (cicular), 3c (rectangular,7x5x1.5″), 6c (rectangular,8x6x2″) 6021224 #P1076291 (EV:$13.99) – Carolyn was totally judging the lady for not even using Pyrex, but then she opened the “10 piece set” and found out they are 5 pieces and 5 lids, and all very small. It was a disappointment, because they are so small that I’d rather just use a glass jar (less fridge/dishwasher room taken up). But still, these will last forever. Then again, jars are free and in neverending [albeit slow] supply, so this was a somewhat questionable purchase, even at $3.
  • $3.00: action figures: Joker, Batman The Brave And The Bold, 4″, squirts water, Happy Meal toy  (EV:$5.99),

    action figure, Silver Surfer, attaches to surfboard, 3.625×5″, Happy Meal toy (EV:$2.99),

    big bag of My Little Pony stuff, G1, Firefly [“Noon” written on leg in marker], Cotton Candy [“Posey” written on leg in marker], Sundance, Sunlight [“Magic Star” written on legs in marker], Baby Half Note, accessories: 19 assorted combs, velco cloth bridle, plastic bridle, plastic saddle, tutu, 2 hats, 2 opalescent plastic wings, baby pony diaper... Yes, a diaper. Plus a bunch of non-pony stuff that we threw away.

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20120603 - yardsale booty - 9 - My Little Pony - IMG_4333e2
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20120603 - yardsale booty - 9 - Rainbow Dash (sic) always dressss in style - IMG_4339
20120603 - yardsale booty - 9 - pony diaper - IMG_4334
20120603 - yardsale booty - 9 - pony bag interlopers - IMG_4335b

  • $3.00: rice cooker, Oster, model# 4751 (EV:$25.99 but ours is missing the steamer basket so we’ll dock it $5 to $21.99) – We didn’t really need this, but it looks a lot nicer than the other one, and I like having backups. Plus we could in theory double-up to cook rice half as often.

20120603 - yardsale booty - z - steel wool, electric putting cup, rice cooker, tub seal - IMG_4346

  • $2.00: lamp, adjustable angle, black (EV:$8, I’m choosing that randomly because small lamps are stupidly-expensive when new. It was probably really more than $8 for all I know!) – Clint figured, correctly, that the bracket connecting to the base would be suitable for mounting this in our closet (with an extension cord running outside the closet, and 16 hooks to manage the cord). He removed the base, and 30 minutes later, closet light! Can tell my blue suits from my black suits for the first time ever!

20120603 - yardsale booty - z - our new closet light - IMG_4349

  • $2.00: mirrors (2), clip-on towing, Cipa, model# 11950, 5×7.5″ (EV:$5.57/ea = $11.14 total) – The Chrysler and Grand Am mirrors are too stupidly, unnecessarily thick for this, but it fits on the Bonneville. Looks like I have an extra.

20120603 - yardsale booty - 7 - towing mirrors, battery charger engine starter - IMG_4323

  • $2.00: dolly/cart, full basket, 18x16x24″ (basket dimensions) (EV:$20.88 but dinging 25% off for the wheels being messed up, one leaked its ball bearings everywhere) – Used this to take in our yardsale stuff! Keeping it by the front door, behind our cinderblock-TV-stand/shelf

Our cats in the dolly:

  • $2.00: game, My First Amazing Game Board Book (EV:$14.95) – for future-Sagan
  • $2.00: solar lights (5), 3-tier, silver, Hampton Bay, 11688, spikes don’t screw in (EV:WAS going to be $49.97, but I have changed it to $1 total — less than what we paid — because by the time I bought the fittings to replace the missing stands, we’d paid $50 – $2 at this yard sale, $48 at home depot, and I am also docking $1 for the fact that the 12 batteries inside them aren’t brand-new… So basically, we actually took a $1 loss here, but it inspired some home improvement, and when the lights die, I’ll have some useful threaded metal rods. Except for the one I ran over with my car. ARGH.)

20120603 - yardsale booty - 7 - bins, solar lights- IMG_4319

  • $2.00: sleeping pad, self-inflating, 72x20x1.5″, R value 3.1, REI Lite-Core 1.5, #CA40159 (EV:$89.50) – Can’t believe these yuppies! They buy a $90 sleeping pad, decide it’s not good enough, upgrade, then sell the first one for $2? How much was the upgraded pad is what I want to know…

20120603 - yardsale booty - z - fresh rosemary, inflatable camping bed - IMG_4351

  • $2.00: golf, electric putting cup with mat, World Of Golf, model#JR103 (EV:$19.99) – For a friend

20120603 - yardsale booty - z - steel wool, electric putting cup, rice cooker, tub seal - IMG_4346

  • $1.00: microphone, usb, Rock Band, Logitech, model# A-0234A (EV:$3.99) – Upgrade to our broken-plastic headset we’ve been using (which cost at least 8X this, and is worse!). Will look cooler too.

20120603 - yardsale booty - 5 - paint, RockBand microphone, Batman pez - IMG_4309

  • $1.00: steel wool, 15 pads, medium #1, Rhodes America HomaxProducts (EV:$6.38 for 16, so $5.98 for 15) – can’t really justify NOT buying these, ’cause I know we’ll need them at SOME point
  • $1.00: bins (4 total, yellow (2), brown (2)), plastic, stackable, 12x9x7″ (EV:$6.82) – We had bins on our coffee table. Then the roaches came, and we removed them to purge them. Then they left, and the table’s all empty again. The bins we moved have new homes. We need more bins for our coffee table. And here they are!

20120603 - yardsale booty - 7 - bins, solar lights- IMG_4319

  • $1.00: game, FamilyStories Family Night, Susan Magsamen (EV:$4.79) – for future-Sagan
  • $1.00: paint, 30 fl oz, Behr, beigeish color (Warm Cocoon), medium base, #1400, interior flat (EV:$5.86 — rationale:$24.96 for a gallon) – For painting our roof white to save A/C bills. But the ROI is far less if you buy paint at new-price. Yard-sale-white-paint is what we want now!

20120603 - yardsale booty - 5 - paint, RockBand microphone, Batman pez - IMG_4309

  • $1.00: wireless USB adapter, D-Link, DWL-G120, part# BDWLG120..B1, serial# D91K14B015832, Mac id: 0011954A6E91, H/W ver: b1, F/W ver: (EV:$15.45) – Possible way for Carolyn’s non-wifi laptop to get on our wifi

20120603 - yardsale booty - z - fresh rosemary, inflatable camping bed - IMG_4351

  • $1.00: light pull with 2 outlets, 718B (EV:$1.85) – useful, I use many of these to create extra plugs around lights. Great if you don’t have enough plugs in your bathroom, for example.

20120603 - yardsale booty - z - our new closet light - IMG_4349

  • $1.00: tub surround seal, Magic, almond color, 1×131″, TE50 (EV:$11.57) – But apparently this product is shit and shouldn’t be used in place of proper caulking. Thus, we will do BOTH.

20120603 - yardsale booty - z - steel wool, electric putting cup, rice cooker, tub seal - IMG_4346

  • $1.00: sandpaper, 9 sheets, 120C grit, Norton #00357 DS70170, 9×11″ (EV:$0.59/sheet, thus $5.31 for 9 sheets)
  • $0.50: sandpaper, 4 sheets, assorted grit 60, 100, 150, 220, 3M, 25000-20-CC (EV:$5.47) – Have spent $100+ on full-price sandpaper in the past. Will definitely need more in the future.
  • $0.50: game, 24: CTU: Undercover (EV:$17.09) – We’ll play this at least once!

20120603 - yardsale booty - 4 - games - IMG_4328

  • $0.50: game, Pictureka, shrink-wrapped (EV:$13.45) – for future-Sagan
  • $0.50: pez dispenser, Batman (EV:$2.00) – We already had one, but this is in the package, so it’s a wall-hang

20120603 - yardsale booty - 5 - paint, RockBand microphone, Batman pez - IMG_4309

  • $0.50: game, Munchkin Cthulhu 2: Call Of Cowthulhu (EV:$6.77) – Munchkin upgrade?!?!! Awesome, even if we’ve only played our Munchkin once, because it requires three players!
  • $0.25: game, Blink, by Reinhard Stoupe, stock#92222 (EV:$3.30) – I’ll try any 25-cent cardgame once, if it’s unique, i.e. not using a standard deck
  • $0.25: game, Nanofictionary, Looney Labs (out of print, but it goes for $13.95 when it’s in print. However, it’s not on Ebay or anywhere else. There are people on BoardGameGeek willig to trade, a few willing to sell, but for the most part, YOU CAN’T GET THIS. So I am upping the EV to $20. I remember when RoboRally — a $55 game — was out of print, and you had to pay $300 to get it on Ebay. But I don’t think this game is nearly as popular as RoboRally!) – I was interested in this game! And it’s out of print! So I get to find it mere weeks after having an interest, even though anyone else in that same situation would be shit outta luck! YAY!
  • $0.125: action figure, Spider-Man 5.25″ (EV:$6.99) – he kinda has boobs, lol

20120603 - yardsale booty - 5 - action figures - IMG_4290

  • $0.125: action figure, Star Wars, R2D2, 2.25″, turning head, moveable legs, arm compartments, grappling hook compartment (EV:$4.99)
  • $FREE: gambling table top covers, 54×30, roulette, black jack, craps, 3-card poker ($56.99 for the table top and covers – we only have some covers, so we’ll count 2/3rds of that) – Currently put in larger windows to help block the sun for sleeping, but useful if we ever wanted to simulate gambling.

20120603 - yardsale booty - 6 - gambling tabletop - IMG_4316
20120603 - yardsale booty - 6 - gambling tabletop - IMG_4318

  • $FREE: cd, Drew’s Famous Party Music – FREE ITEM FORCED ON US WHILE BUYING OTHER ITEMS (EV:$0.52.) – Though to us, it’s worthless. Free jewel box, basically.
  • $FREE: book, The Complete Idiot’s Guide To The Perfect Cover Letter ($14.95 cover price) – may come in handy in Clint’s job search
  • $FREE: piece of ribbon, 18″x4mm (EV:$0) – I don’t even know why Carolyn bothered to type this up, hahaha.
  • $FREE: tupperware, 6.5x5x3″, full of travel-sized lotions (4), and conditioner (4), Comfort Care Essentials (travel-size CCE stuff can sell for $0.25/ea so we’ll count this, plus 25 cents for the tupperware, for a total of $2.25) – Free lotion? ALWAYS. 4 showers’ worth of free conditioner? Why the hell would someone throw that away instead of just using it???!?

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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. 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 “fixed” (i.e. 1 cent items that cost $10 to ship would not be $10 in person).Mood: alone Music: The Church – Chromium (acoustic)