The Last Garage Sale

Once upon a time (okay, it was several years ago), my sister and I decided to have a garage sale using her garage. Thanks to the events that unfolded, it was my sister Lindy’s very last garage sale EVER.

To begin with, hauling all our “valuable” merchandise out to the garage was no picnic. Add to the hauling the delightful task of pricing and we were exhausted before the first customer arrived. My sister had some beautiful dresses that her daughter  had worn maybe two or three times. Since they were practically brand-new, she asked me how much she should charge. We finally decided on five dollars being the absolute lowest price she could accept since the dresses had each originally been seventy or eighty dollars.

My sister also had a roll-away bed and we decided that it would be much more inviting with it set up. By the time we were done setting up, the area in front of her garage had been transformed into what appeared at first glance to be a flea market.

We were open for business.

The first customers totally creeped my sister out. They were two men, and they were interested in trying on my sister’s nightgowns.

I knew I shouldn’t have put those in the sale.

she wailed to me.  But it was  too late–one of the men managed to squeeze the nightgown over his head and wiggle into the garment in front of us.

He explained:

It’s for my mother.


What man tries on his mother’s nightgown?

My sister decided that there was only one answer: Norman Bates.

Shortly thereafter came “the bargain hunters.” They loved Fiona’s little dresses. But they were determined not to pay the price.

Would you take a dollar?

a woman asked my sister. By this time my sister was hot and, unfortunately, so was the weather. It must have been about one hundred degrees that day.

NO way.

my sister replied.

We had many other customers, but the one that caused my sister Lindy to take a permanent stand against garage sales came in the afternoon. He was a man who walked around the garage and looked at everything. Finally he settled on a pair of my son’s old shoes on which I had placed the whopping price of fifty cents.

I’d like to try these on.

he announced. We looked around, but since Lindy had no intention of allowing him in her house, there was no place to sit except for the roll-away bed. He sat on and bent over to fasten the shoes. Somehow the roll-away did its job and actually rolled away, leaving him on the ground.

He started mentioning something about his back, and my sister started worrying about her homeowners’ insurance coverage. We finally told him to take the shoes for free and we would call it even.

When we totaled up what we had made and compared it to the aggravation and distress we had experienced, it was no contest. We had sat in the hot sun and dealt with weird people all for less than two hundred dollars. No wonder it was my sister’s very last garage sale!

As for me, I am getting ready for a sale at my church tomorrow. I’m hoping to make a fortune and avoid all weirdos.

Update on the church sale: I sat outside for five and a half hours and earned thirty four dollars and seventy five cents. We also sold hot dogs and pop. The cost of the items was $30 and we made $47. On the plus side, I did manage to avoid all weirdos.


  1. Other Mary says:

    “Amen” to that, Abby.

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