Saturday, September 29, 2007

It was craptacular, y'all.

You have to get up earlier than 6:45am on a Saturday to put one over on us, I'll tell you that right now.

I've done a few garage sales in my day, and here are some things that I have learned. I saw these things again today during the garage sale with my folks.

See? Nothing gets by them, either.

1. "I only have $10. Will you take $10 for this?"
This is a trick.

Today a woman said she only had $10 for my lamp. It was marked $15. Then she went to her car to get her money, and she paid me with a $20 bill.

Now, if you are going to try and convince me that you only have $10 and you are asking me to come down on the price of a fantastic lamp BECAUSE you only have $10, don't pay me with a $20 bill.

20 is more than 10. Der.

2. "I don't speak English."
This is also a trick.

If you can tell me that you don't speak English, then argue with me to take one dollar for a four dollar item, the issue here is not that you don't speak English.

3. "This is broken. You take one dollar for it?"
Again, a trick.

Something that is marked as four dollars is marked as four dollars for a reason. I have developed a scienticially and emotionally based pricing structure over the years.

Plus, I found stickers that already have prices on them. I like to make sure every sticker, no matter the price, goes on something. It's kind of like a Price is Right pricing game. I have the prices on stickers, and I have to find the items of crap in my house that fit those prices.

But, if you are trying to talk me down from four dollars to one dollar, telling me that the object in question is broken is not going to work.

If it is broken, why are you still willing to pay even one dollar for it? Why not put it down and walk away? You know, since it's broken and all.


4. The old "pile of change and run" trick
Much like it says in the name, this is a trick, too.

It can also involve #2 above.

This is when you hold a pile of stuff, count out all of the change in your purse then dump it in my hand and walk away before I can add up the stuff you are holding OR the pile of change you just dumped in my hands.

I hate coins.

5. The tag switch
One of the trickier tricks.

It's hard to watch everything that goes on during a busy garage sale, but sometimes we caught that a low-dollar sticker was mysteriously on something that should not have had such a low price on it. And then later we would see a ridiculously over-priced item that was mysteriously probably priced at what an expensive item should have been priced earlier in the day.

While people may think they are putting one over on us, what they don't realize is that while they got a steal by paying only two dollars for a four dollar jacket, someone later in the day will pay four dollars for what should have been a two dollar shirt.

We get our money anyway. Even though you saved a dollar. Good job.

6. Send in the kids to negotiate trick
This isn't so much of a trick as it is just exploiting the youth of the world.

Sending your small child over with instructions to hold out a dollar and whine-ingly ask if I will take a dollar for something marked two dollars is both manipulative and, well, lame.

And I have no problem saying no to your child.

As per every garage sale, there was one item that people kept picking up to look at, but no one ever bought it. Today, it was the squeaky hamburger.

It squeaks when you squeeze it. My dad and I eventually played a game of Squeaky Hamburger Softball with it and a golf club.

I won.

That official accounting firm that they use for the Oscars and stuff is calculating how much money I made from refusing to sell things for a dollar. But I think it's somewhere around a million dollars. You know, if I had to guess.

I'm just glad that my house is a bit less craptacular. And if you need me tomorrow, don't.

I am in hiding until I have to go to work on Monday.


P.S. Worst garage sale helpers, EVER. But still cute.

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