Friday, August 17, 2012

Fair Grounds Fun

I have some junk in my garage that I've been wanting to get rid of and though I've had many yard sales over the years, the thought of taking 2 dollar offers on 30 dollar items in my own yard is about the same amount of fun as getting smashed in the sack with a snow shovel. Instead of the unpleasant task of dealing with the grabby masses and their finely honed "reality-TV-show-auction-bargain-war-negotiating-skills", I decided to gather my stuff and bring it to the local flea market. The logic being bigger crowds who would bring me a dump truck load of cash, a day in the sun and a sense of adventure. ...ok not really, it's a lot of work but at least this way I'd be a little more committed to sell the stuff off and not feel like I took a load of trash out a for a joy ride and a movie.

  I arrived at the market before the management got there to open the office. After pulling in the wrong gate and parking in the field like I owned the place, I noticed I was the only dealer in the outside vendor area. In the distance across a big field I saw an SUV parked in front of the correct dealer entrance with one truck behind hers. The first lady opened the gate while the truck in the rear promptly raced around her pulling up to the only covered spot in the entire field. The manager finally pulled up between us, rolled down her window, looked at me and said,

"You're the first one here. It's first come first serve. Do you want the covered spot?"

  I glanced at the other dealer who shot out of the gate like a cat that was plunged into a full tub of ice water to get to the coveted spot as she glared back at me with bitter determination almost daring me, the newbie guy, to take the prized spot. She was known around these parts as Joanne, maybe in her early sixties, bigger than me, but she was no Kong. I figured if it came to blows, I could probably take her.

  "Sure! That would be great!" I replied

Turns out Joanne was a really nice gal. She had a sense of humor, interesting stories and We became fast friends. We were also the only two foolish enough to show up for this outdoor EZ bake oven market trying to peddle our wares in 92 degree heat so we made the best of it. She brought her own canopy chair but I insisted that she hung around my luxurious accommodations sometimes so she wouldn't burn her ass off. Somehow the bathrooms were overlooked and weren't held to the same high standards as my booth.

Joanne did warn me about the facilities and all the "Cheap dealers" that try to get discounts.

  "They ain’t got no money an they want it cheeeeeep CHEAP!" she said.

I noticed later that everything in her booth was one dollar. Seems like they would be her target market, but what do I know?.... My booth looked like it was sold by the pound or scooped from a landfill and dropped from 15 feet in the air.


In the end, I had a great time, made a new friend, a bunch of one dollar bills and a sunburn on the back of my neck that looks like I'd been beaten with a fly swatter. I took an old loaf of bread and fed the the sky scavenger Seagulls to close the day out. I understand wheat bread is better than white for them to eat but if they're not standing around in parking lots looking at each other, they are usually fighting over Cheetos, French fries and discarded burger buns so what's a slice or two Wonder Bread going to hurt?

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