Everyday lives of the Meabon Household

Saturday, May 14, 2011

A Lesson in Garage Sales

I love my husband.  But before this morning, "garage sales skills" was not one of his strong suits.  Today was a learning lesson for him and as an observer, I must say it, was quite entertaining.

Okay, rewind.  Our neighborhood has a neighborhood wide garage sale twice a year - one in the spring and one in the fall.  This is the only time you are permitted to place your items on your front drive for people to peruse.  Since Jared and I married, I have been a Junior League member so all of our things we've needed to get rid of are generally part of my quota donation as a membership requirement or we've gotten lazy and just dropped them at the Goodwill Donation stop near our house in Atlanta.  This fall, we missed the neighborhood garage sale during Harps stay in the hospital.  Since then, anything that we've come across that needs getting rid of was stacked in the garage and attic in my "garage sale pile".  Jared would roll his eyes each time the pile grew and an item was added and I would hear, "Bubs, this is ridiculous.  No one is going to buy that/No one is going to come to the garage sale/Can't we just throw that away?/This pile is getting in my way."  I held my ground and promised to take any unsold items immediately away but, by God, we were having a garage sale.  In December, I handpicked for my JL Donation but careful so that we would have plenty for a successful garage sale come spring. 

The neighborhood news letter came out alerting us to the upcoming sale and Jared, again, went on and on about how no one would be in our neighborhood for the garage sales.  On Tuesday, signs were posted outside of our neighborhood gates on a busy street announcing the sale.  Then, the neighborhood directly across from us announced their neighborhood sale on the same day.   Do you see where this is going???

Friday night, I tagged our items and arranged them in the garage so they could easily be moved outside to the driveway the next morning.  All electronics would line the driveway, household items would be displayed on our tables, boxes would be under the tables with cds, games and other entertainment items.  All clothes would be hung on hangers on the garage door and shoes would be placed underneath this to clearly mark off our garage  from the sales area.  The garage would stay off limits so we wouldn't have to move our lawn equipment, baby strollers, pool equipment, etc to a hiding spot.  The sale officially started at 9am but my plan was to be out by 8am.  My parents had tables we could borrow for display.  I asked Jar to run grab them after the Squirrel went down on Friday night but he said he could grab them in the morning.  At 7:30am, the GSR (Garage Sale Rookie) made a trip to my parents' house to pick up the tables.  This trip took place about 30 minutes later than I would have liked but I'd put up with enough eye rolling, complaining and whining so whatever - somebody had to pick up the tables. 

At 7:58am, as I'm finishing feeding the Squirrel her breakfast, GSR comes bursting through the doors in a panic!  "THEY'RE HERE, THEY'RE HERE!!!! WE'RE MISSING IT!  WE HAVE GOT TO GET STARTED IMMEDIATELY!!!"  So I tell GSR to finish getting the girl dressed, I'd get it set up and when he was done, he could come help.  The response?

GSR: "No, I've got it." 

Me:  "Seriously???  Its ok GSR.  I've done a million garage sales.  I'll do it." 

GSR:  "NO (hand thrust forward to emphasize the NO), I'M going to do it!"

GSR then proceeds to run in and out of the garage door about 5 times in a serious tizzy.  I finish the Squirrel's food and get her dressed, throw on my shoes, strap the Squirrel in the Baby Bjorn and walk outside to join my new sales partner in our weekend yard shop.  Jared is surrounded by 30 people with the whites of his eyes showing and looking like a baby bunny realizing its trapped in the crosshairs of a bazooka.  He has set up our two tables, thrown tvs, pictures, gaming systems, decorative items, etc, on the tables and then chunked five large bags of clothes and shoes on top of everything on the tables.  People are digging through the tables, leaving items all over the floor, thrusting money in his face and rummaging around through our garage in our things that clearly aren't for sale.  When I saw them pushing my Bob Stroller around to test it out, I nearly had a heart attack.  Um, do you realize I just paid a few hundred dollars for that thing????  It is not for sale and no, you can't convince me to sell it for $20!

I turn to GSR and (probably not my smartest move) say "What the heck is going on??? What happened to the system?  Why is all of this just piled up?"  Wow, bad idea. 

So we take a couple of minutes, regroup and get things as organized as we can while the garage sale scavengers continue picking through our things.  I calmly direct (ok, maybe frantically shout) a few directions and soon, we're looking a little more business-like.  I get into the thrill of the sale and notice GSR is missing.  A few minutes later, my husband emerges from the house with a very sweaty buyer following him.  GSR lets me know that the person needed a tv and he wanted to show them the guest room tv.  Um, when did we decide to sell that tv and did you really just take that random stranger through our house??? Again, I love my husband but he is WAY too trustworthy. 

After about an hour, 200 shoppers and a nice amount of loot in hand, Jared starts seeing the beauty in a garage sale and starts asking what else in the house we can sell.  He starts strategizing on how we could have been more effective, what the "hot ticket" items are that we need to have in the future and how we should have been out and set up by 7am to be the most effective.  Well, excuse me GSE (Garage Sale Expert).  Looks like we have a convert, don't we?
Toward the end with our dwindled down goods on display


boo and stacy said...

HILARIOUS GSR's wife!!!!!!!!!!! What a fantastic idea to have a neighborhood garage sale!

Maegan said...

I always put Paul on child duty OFF premises when we have a garage sale. It makes it easier for me to sell all of their stuff and I can work my system!:)

Lisa Johnson said...

So funny! I can just picture it! Brad and I LOVE garage sales (selling stuff, not buying) so we look forward to the one in the Fall. Am cracking up that there were people out there so early!!

Tootle Family said...

I'm DYING!!!! That is exactly how my garage sale would have gone. we lived in Churchill estates, and those garage sale hunters are CRAZY. I love how he came up with next year's strategies (yours). so funny.

Pam said...

All I can say is this post brought a huge smile to my face and out loud laughter to someone staring at my iPad , me. Can't wait to see the the GSR in action in the fall.