Last weekend I had a new experience, my first yard sale. It was a fun time, spent with good friends, meeting a whole lot of wonderful people. A cloud cast a shadow upon us before we started however, created by a thief.
To the person who trespassed on my property Friday while I was at work and stole items from us, you ought to be ashamed of yourself. You are a vile person with no morals, ethics or respect for other people or their property.
Although our prices were more than fair, you would have been surprised by the amount of items we simply gave away to people who might not have had enough money in their pocket or were such incredible people, we just wanted them to have it. Had you asked, those things would have probably been given to you as well. Although I'm sure money wasn't your issue, since my neighbor saw the car you were driving.
Instead you will live in shame over such trivial things. You are nothing more than a criminal, having committed trespassing, larceny and burglary. Was it worth it? Do you feel good about yourself?
To all the other kind people who came by, thank you. It was a pleasure meeting and visiting with you. And for those who plan to have a yard sale of your own, beware of putting your things out early; there is a thief among us.
It's the Mother of all Yard Sales, the long-distance run of garage bargain-hunting, a smorgasbord of discounts.
It'll sprawl for about 100 kilometres across Elgin County, with more than 100 vendors -- from homeowners disposing of unwanted stuff, to churches and community groups recycling used items and businesses slashing the prices on surplus inventory.
If you drive the route of the historic Talbot Trail, it normally takes about 90 minutes at posted highway speeds. But this Saturday it could take you much longer -- especially if you have cash and the impulse to tickle your fancy.
Maybe it's books, CDs or DVDs, a folding card table, garden rake, power drill or crock pot.
Almost everything you can think of from a home has been offered in the sale's previous years, says Marg Emery, executive director of the St. Thomas-Elgin Tourist Association.
In the rest of Canada, the cardboard signs and folding tables make their appearances throughout the entire stretch of summer.
In Ottawa, however, there is one particular day where the garage sale is elevated to the status of institution and attracts thousands from the region. Every fourth Saturday in May, residents of the Glebe neighbourhood put out their wares for purchase. Janet Sutherland, the event's community liaison, suggests setting up early (people show up at the Great Glebe Garage Sale at 6 a.m.) with all items already priced--either individually or in groups.
Instead of offering a hodgepodge for passersby, such as the items pictured below, she says items should be grouped by type (books for 25cents). Making sure you have a cash float with lots of change is also important.
Many Glebe residents try to beat out their neighbours with offerings besides the results culled from the basement -- brownies at 50cents a piece might make that table with the Boy George records and Buns of Steel tapes more attractive.
Kim Dawson brings our attention to a story which deserves greater exposure than she is able to give it (pressures of space, time, need to give several hundred words to a story about how Kate Nash is to work with Gonzalez, a producer that only Canadian beatniks have heard of - yeah, that means you Feist): a story which features Marilyn Manson. And Eva Braun's handbag. And the skeleton of a four-year-old Chinese girl.
Here's how Kim reports the story on her estimable Playlist page: "Marilyn Manson is being sued by ex-keyboard player Stephen Bier who claims cash he is owed was spent on buying a handbag belonging to Hitler's wife Eva Braun."
It's only when you head to MTV, however, that the full freakish detail of this story begins to emerge.
They report: "In a breach-of-contract lawsuit filed Thursday afternoon (August 2) in Los Angeles Superior Court, former Marilyn Manson keyboardist Stephen Gregory Bier Jr. - known to fans by his stage name, Madonna Wayne Gacy - claims the shock rocker has been using the band's money to fund his lavish lifestyle, drug habit and the production of his upcoming film, "Phantasmagoria: The Visions of Lewis Carroll," among other things. The suit further alleges Manson took assets belonging to the rest of the band (money generated through touring, and album and merchandise sales) to purchase Nazi paraphernalia, African masks made of human skin and the full skeleton of a 4-year-old Chinese girl, all of which he has on display in his mansion at Chatsworth, California mansion."
Manson made his response to the suit via MTV. "The fact that he's claiming that I've treated him unfairly, financially, is really ridiculous," the singer said. "And I would never spend my money on a Chinese girl skeleton. That would be crossing the line. It's a Chinese boy, for the record,"
And you thought Manson's spooky persona was just for show! The case, as they say, is ongoing.
The Hamptons was the spot to be for bargain-hunting celebs like Mandy Moore, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, Kelly Ripa and Edie Falco this past weekend. The 10th annual Super Saturday "garage sale" event hosted over 200 vendors including the likes of Marc Jacobs and Dooney and Burke. Super Saturday hosts top designers who have a giant outdoor garage sale donating the previous years items with major discounts ... net proceeds benefit The Ovarian Cancer Research Fund. Guilt free shopping!
In other NY news, Russell Simmons hosted the "Art for Life" party at his plush Hamptons home, attended by Oscar winner Forest Whitaker, and supermodel Petra Nemcova.
Meanwhile, in L.A. a pretty preggo Drea de Matteo was seen leaving Koi -- looking full and claiming she was "retired." "Joey" must have been good to her!
All this and much more in today's rummage sale edition of Star Catcher! No checks! Cash only!