First of all, thanks to Ghost Bait for giving me the idea to actually blog about this via Twitter in the first place! This experience has been rife with blog fodder now that I think about it. And you guys should totally follow them on Twitter, @iamghostbait.
The last two days I have been assisting with putting on (hosting? having?) a garage sale at my sister Cori's house in The Halloween Capital of the World, our town, Anoka, MN. She is really in a prime location for garage sale havin' so we figured, what the heck? It's more of an experiment than really a money-making venture, and a opportunity to get rid of some stuff I don't want anymore (clothes from high school, why did I keep you?!) But the cherry on the top of the sale has been the people, oh the people....
Anoka is a part of what is considered the "Northern Suburbs" of Minneapolis. Anoka itself has a less-than-stellar reputation among, well, every other city in the state (and, well, maybe the nation) but I live here because I know Anoka, like most things with a bad reputation, is a wonderful place to live, with wonderful people, and wonderful things to do, and we all aren't bigots, and nutsos and evangelicals or voted for Michele Bachmann....and I technically was raised in Oak Grove so if anything, I can be like, "I don't know what Anoka's problem is, I grew up on Oak Grove." Shirking responsibility! The American Way! Another part of the American Way is making a buck off your neighbors, so here we go!
We opened on Thursday morning, technically at 8am. The ad in the town paper and on Craigslist was very clear on the 8am opening, so naturally, we had people there at 7:30 as me and my brother-in-law Derek were hauling things out of the garage. One lady was so keen on looking she even offered to help me move things into the driveway, "Oh, no, that's okay..." I said, mostly thinking "We didn't take out small business liability insurance for these next three days so if you like, break your foot or pull a muscle helping us...." but she was insistent and started grabbing things mostly just to create a path for herself into the garage, Hoarders style. She did buy a few tables though, so, rock on, lady. Am I distrustful that my first thought is that she might hurt herself and then try to sue us? No, no I'm not. I'm a realist.
The other couple that pulled up a half-hour early was an elderly couple who was full of advice. "You're gonna want to move those garage cans out of your garage, otherwise you'll stink up the place." He told Derek, while he was in the midst of carrying a heavy steel clothing rack loaded with clothes out into the driveway. Derek didn't offer a response, but hauled his garbage and recycling bin out of the garage quickly. Heh. Today he said he was going to tell the old man, "Well, you can go sit in your car for another half hour while I finish setting up and come in here at eight like the ad said." Oh, I love older people, most of the time. But some of them are so full of advice that they feel they need to dispense unto us youngins' it can get a bit trying. He also complained about the dress pants he was buying for 50 cents had a little bit of dog hair on it. Derek suggested he wash them before wearing them.
After the first few early birds we got what would mostly be called the "I'm on disability" crowd. Those middle-of-the-day people who don't necessarily work from home, or stay home with their kids or don't work because they are millionaires, or because they got laid off or because they're retired, or on vacation. No, these people are out in the middle of a weekday going to garage sales because they got nothing else to do. Now, I would just like to preface this next little tale with this. I am a very nice person, but when I get around my mom and my sister, I get kinda mean-spirited. Those bitches bring out the worst in me (I love them, though) and the same goes for them. We are known as The Three-Headed-Monster on most occasions when we get together. A couple came in, very thin, very face-sorey, very....Anoka. The woman, no joke, looked exactly like Amy Winehouse, but what she would look like if she was in her forties. Lots of black hair ratted and piled on top of her hair, about 5'10, maybe 100 lbs, tops. Missing a few teeth, ya know. And her old man was your typical Anoka resident out in the middle of the day (I wish I could transport all you readers to my hometown just for a day, you would understand what I am talking about) they were very nice people, a little tweaking, and left without buying anything. "They were mad we didn't have and Sudefed." I snapped. Ma and Coco laughed. I felt a little bad....Meth jokes!
We did actually had a killer day yesterday. We all made mad bank and are very happy with how it went, and people weren't too bad with trying to negotiate prices. One guy did come in and buy all the baby clothes I was selling for sixty bucks! Wow! He got a bit of a deal, but he bought them all in one shot! He had a baby girl coming in a month and a half and I think he was scrambling a bit. My mom sold almost all of her furniture she had on the sale, and my step-son was making money hand over fist selling his nearly-mint condition action figures (he is a very neat child, that comes in handy.) All in all, we had a great day! It was a lot of work, and I am pale and have (fake) red hair, so sitting in the sun was bit hard on me, so when I told my husband I would put our daughter to bed at 8pm last night....I fell asleep next to her and didn't get back up until this morning.
Today wasn't as exciting as yesterday was. We didn't sell as much nor were we as busy. We actually got kind of bored. We started reading to each other from the Time Life Strange But True magazine I brought over to my sister's house this morning. I was scolding for believing that crop circles were created by UFO's. But we all made fun of my sister for that time she texted me from Jackson Hole, Wyoming and asking me if jackalopes were real. She assumed they lived in the Alps. "Yeah, with Maria Von Trapp." my mom said.
Tomorrow is the last day of our kick-ass sale. I am planning on bringing a few new things to add to the inventory tomorrow morning just to keep things fresh (and see if I can make a little more dough, of course.) Since it is Saturday and Anoka is a happening town, we are hoping to get a bit of traffic from the people heading to the Classic Car Show that Anoka hosts every Saturday night in the summer, and people heading to the huge aquatic center up the street.
If you are in the Minneapolis area, come see us! The ad is online...I would totally promote it here, but I think my sister would kill me until I was dead if I posted her address on my blog.