Selling Purses to the Stars

Posted on June 12, 2017


Life in the Boomer Lane’s neighborhood has an annual yard sale. This year, the sale was scheduled for a weekend when LBL was to be out-of-town.  Now Husband graciously agreed to cover for her.

A leaking roof this past year resulted in many thousands of dollars spent. It also resulted in a lot of roof banging, which rattled the rafters and sent vintage 1912 paper that had covered them, raining down on all objects that had been stored in the eaves. (A note to Readers: If this last sentence has been too unwieldy for you, LBL will translate: There was old, disgusting, crumbly paper up there, which then covered everything in a fine mist of crap.)

LBL and Now Husband had to clear out the entire area and have the contractor cover the walls with plywood and install half a new floor. Then, after Now Husband’s foot went unceremoniously through the old part of the floor,  narrowly missing breaking his leg and/or cracking his skull open, the contractor had to come back and complete the floor.

In the process of spending more money and clearing out the attic, LBL and Now Husband discovered numerous delightful items that could be sold at the yard sale.  These included:

  1. really large and scary paintings done by a friend of Now Husband
  2. three potty seats with some inexplicable parts
  3. a broken Mr Coffee machine, which had been stored for “parts”
  4. a vintage bottle from a turn-of-the-century DC grocer

The items to be sold gradually became a fairly sizeable number. The range was impressive, everything from fairly expensive and little-used housewares to the aforementioned potty seats (free for the taking) and everything in between.

LBL, while grateful that Now Husband would cover, also knew his penchant for selling items for a mere pittance, or simply giving them away.  In order to stop that puppy from nipping again, LBL had a fool-proof system of labeling. She told Now Husband that if an item had a colored label, it could be negotiated. But if it had a white label, it could not.

Now Husband, if not a master of negotiating, is certainly a master of schmooze. He is in his element, and folks respond. In past sales, he sold some of his vintage watches, and now the vintage watch contingent shows up early and eagerly to see his offerings. The rest of customers, LBL likes to think, show up not only because of Now Husband’s blinding smile, but because they know that LBL has impeccable, as well as often-changing, taste, and they can benefit from her ADD approach to home decor.

The sale was a huge success. Very little was left. It was especially a bonanza for art lovers. One couple was delighted to have scored the huge, really scary painting for $20, as well as a smaller, somewhat less scary, version for $10. Another couple bought a small painting of LBL’s for $30 and Now Husband then gave them a tour of the house so that they could see all the rest of her work.  So, in effect, this became LBL’s first solo art show.

The potty seats were taken, all the random parts not deterring the taker in the least. Gone also was a filing cabinet, two lamps, and items that others had gifted to LBL. She can’t therefore list them, on the off-chance the givers are reading this post. Gone were many other items which LBL can’t now recall. She realizes that these items, once necessary for LBL’s emotional and esthetic well-being,  disappeared from her consciousness as soon as someone else acquired them.

Best of all, LBL found out that one of her purses was purchased by a local TV personality. The purse was small, with a small price tag. Nonetheless, it confirmed to LBL that her exquisite taste was shared by celebs. Now, each time the purchaser appears on TV,  LBL drifts off, imagining her toting the little purse, off to one of the many very glamorous events in her very glamorous life.

If LBL could remember other items she sold, she might think about their new lives somewhere. She suspects many of them will simply end up in the future yard sales of the people who bought them. She tries not to imagine the people who took the potty seats or bought the scary paintings.  But she has already started to accumulate a tiny pile of items for the next sale. She knows that, as in all other years, the pile will grow until, at the next sale, they will be presented on her driveway. The public awaits.