like found objects. They’re better than yard or garage sale finds because, while you seek out that certain something at a sale, found objects find you. A tiny but very important difference, and not without it’s own brand of magic.
Found this little guy at my daughter’s first soccer game of the season. While I know there is fortune and fame to be made teasing away rock and dirt from real dinosaur bones, I have neither the knees nor the patience to sit in the heat of South Dakota armed only with a paintbrush. These are the kinds of dinos I like to find: small, rubbery and in shades that would make the dominatrix of domesticity, Martha Stewart, squeal like a schoolgirl in an Anne Geddes gallery.
A visit to the in-laws, anyone’s in-laws, is often a mix of emotions: frustration, confusion, and often a good case of indigestion. One universal saving grace with my in-laws is that they live in one of the few remaining towns where nearly anything can be put to the curb for trash day, no questions asked. Power tools? Take your pick. Furniture? By the score. Dead hooker in a fraternity carpet? As long as you leave a twenty for the trash man. These guys came off a tall shelf-slash-drawer combination with a bit of a midcentury modern vibe to it. My basement is full of half restored furniture relics from all ages and styles, so I couldn’t take the waterlogged beast home. The hardware would have to do. Most of the brass plating is gone, but I suspect they’ll look awesome after some time at the buffer.
They tore down a neighbor’s house this week. I had purchased some tools and a homemade metal tool box from the owner a year or two before. He and the house looked the same: old, thin, sagging, in desperate need of some much needed rehabilitation. Just before the demo squad came in, I noticed a lime green lump in the flower bed. Despite the dog chews on the handle, this is pure 70’s coolness. Very torn between keeping this around the house and selling it off.
This last bunch was from a yard sale find this morning. I haven’t had much luck with garage sales and their kin of late: often things are priced atmospherically high or someone is hoping to make a buck off of what amounts to kindling. But the sign was simple (‘Yard Sale’, a small arrow and ‘Today’ on orange poster board), the proprietor friendly and welcoming and all the items neat and well organized.
I’ve seen wire filing baskets like these go for astronomical prices on places like Etsy, but these will find far more utilitarian pursuits organizing parts and tools in my shop. If I get desperate, I may hawk them at inflated prices to a hipster looking for irony and a place to keep their Metrocard.
Nothing says awesome to me like a home built tool caddy. The hammer hits lovingly varnished over, the drill outs for screwdrivers, the worn smoothness of the handle. Again, this will not be on a shelf and admired like some abstract connection to my blue collar roots, this will likely be used and abused as it was intended to be.
The mark of a good yard sale? Something for the kiddies. My daughter seems to have an inordinate fascination with horses (and which one doesn’t?), so she let out an audible gasp when she spied this at the sale. I was not keen on loading her room with yet another tchotchke, but the seller gave me the Universal Wave of Just Take It. You can’t say no to the Universal Wave…