Site icon Things I find in the garbage



Last week I joined the eBay Partner Network. Basically, that means I get a cut of their profits when anyone creates an account or buys something after visiting eBay through a link on my blog. I figured I might as well, since I regularly include links to eBay anyways. It might help me make a bit of extra cash, though I’m not expecting it to be super lucrative.

So, if you ever want to buy something off eBay (and not necessarily my stuff) considered getting there by first clicking one of my links. It won’t cost you anything extra, and I’ll make a few bucks. If you’re interested in creating an account, do that through my blog too! Feel free to send me an email if you need any help with the process.

Here’s hoping one of you wants to buy a car on eBay, as the cut of that would be quite nice. Or how about these million dollar earrings? Okay, maybe that’s pushing it.

Anyways, last week was another good one. My spot in NDG again produced some interesting finds.

Inside this bag …

… was a cool 60s mod wall light.

It’s a pretty cool piece that creates a really awesome ambiance. I couldn’t find any marks on it, but I wonder if it could be a designer piece. The bag had something written in parenthesis under the “yellow lamp,” which could maybe be a name. However, I either can’t make out what it says, or the name isn’t well known. It looks like “A Angin.” Either may, it might have some value, although I have a strong appreciation for good lighting and the color yellow.

There were some nice old kitchenwares, including a working mixer (the last setting seems unusually loud, but it might just need some oil) …

a cooking thermometer, in its original box …

a glass juicer (which cleaned up nicely) …

and some old silver plate cutlery.

I also saved a nice framed print featuring the Arc de Triomphe …

a book on Wicca …

an issue of Rolling Stone magazine from 1971 …

a New York Times magazine from 1967, featuring an article on dreaming (I like the handwriting near the top, which says “keep for article on dreaming”) …

and a small copy of the UN Charter, which was apparently bought at the United Nations building in New York in 1952.

I visited Mount Royal on Tuesday night. I’ve been keeping an eye on this spot, since it produced some neat stuff a few weeks back.

This week I opened the recycling bin, and found it was full of books! I took a lot, more than I could handle really. I ended up putting the ones I didn’t want (couldn’t keep might be a more accurate phrase) in the Give Box on St Viateur.

Some of the books were quite old, and in nice condition too. All these sex psychology books were published in the early 1900s by F.A Davis Co. They were all written by Havelock Ellis, save for one by a guy named Huhner. Havelock Ellis was one of the first people to scientifically study homosexuality, and invented the term “eonism.” Eonism apparently means “the adoption of female dress and behaviour by a male”.

I shot this picture using the brass book holder I found at this exact spot. It really makes the books look great! I’m considering keeping it now, as it would help make my eBay book listings extra nice.

Inside the book on eonism were a couple old newspaper clippings featuring stories about men who dressed like women. They’re a fun read for anyone who interested in LGBT issues. Click on the photo for a better view.

Another book contained a couple clippings from 1937 about the murder of a guy by the name of Henri Fissiault …

while another contained a couple of questionable pamphlets. The one on the left advocates choosing a wife based on eugenics. In that school of thought, the quality of one’s genes can be deduced from their facial features and body type, among other things. Needless to say, that was disproved long ago, but not before the holocaust and mass sterilizations in the USA and Canada (which, to no surprise, disproportionally affected native and other minority populations before the program finally ended in 1972).

I enjoyed saving this giant brick of a book.

It’s a dictionary that was published in 1882.

The cover isn’t in good shape, but it should provide some fun nonetheless. A few friends and I have I’ve recently been playing something called the dictionary game, where someone reads a definition from a dictionary and others have to guess what the word is. I imagine this 1882 edition will have some fun old-timey words and phrasing.

There were lots of other books too, including:

a book of poetry by Tennyson from 1923 …

a collection of New Yorker cartoons from 1937 …

a two volume edition of “Outlines of the Life of Shakespeare” from 1889 …

an old book of Rembrandt prints; a book published by Nato in the early 60s about emergency war surgery …

a book about Louis Riel; a book on the history of Montreal (published in 1942) …

a book of Aislin’s cartoons; another compilation of New Yorker cartoons (up to the year 1950) …

and many others! The main themes here seem to be psychology or Canadian history.

The most valuable book might be the DSM II manual, on the left. The DSM is a classification of mental disorders, as determined by the American Psychiatric Association.

The DSM II was published in 1968, and famously included homosexuality as a mental disorder. These manuals are not particularly common, and apparently somewhat collectible. One recently sold for 250$, while mine is only one of two currently listed. The other is set at nearly 625$ with best offer, though I’m not sure if it’s worth that much.

Mine is listed at about 280$, with free shipping. It’s in good condition, though slightly more worn than the others. I may reduce the price slightly if it sits around for a while, but I do expect it to go for a nice sum.

Thursday night brought me back to my spot in NDG.

I opened one bag, and saw an old jewelry box. Some objects rattled within, and I was excited to take a look inside.

I was hoping for another big jewellery haul, but it was not to be. The bottom drawer held some nice incense, a deck of (tarot?) cards, and a really gnarly looking tooth (which can be seen below the red incense, if you’re not too grossed out by such things).

This is the card deck. Any help identifying it would be appreciated!

The top drawer was mostly full of junk. I did save a few things though, including a crystal bead necklace, a ring, and a couple scents in cute bottles.

The box itself was kind of nice, but in need of minor repair. I might be able to fix it up without too much effort.

There was some nice stuff beneath the jewelry box. This container was marked “old coins.”

The coins weren’t super old (mostly from the 1960s), but they still added up to a little more than a buck.

There was a singing bowl. It’s fairly small, measuring maybe 3.5″ in diameter.

There was a nice footed trivet, or at least I think it’s a trivet.

It’s marked “Manning quality, Bowman, Meriden Conn.” on the bottom.

I did find a few bits of jewelry in this little mesh bag.

Many of the pieces were crystal and rocks pendants.

This one ring stuck out from the rest. It also really sticks out from your hand – the stone is held a good half inch or so from the ring hole. It’s marked and tests as sterling silver. There’s a designer mark as well, though I can’t make it out. I posted some pictures of the marks below, if anyone’s interested.

There were a couple of art prints in a box along with some old wrapping paper. This one features a building on McGill College and Sherbrooke. It’s hard to tell if this one is an original or a print, though I suspect it’s the latter.

This is the “One who understands” by Paul Klee. It looks to be a silkscreen print, as it’s definitely made from real paint. I had some hope that it was an original, but it’s likely just a nice museum souvenir.

Let’s finish off with these letters, and a question to you.

I found a bag full of old letters at this spot. Many date back to the 1930s and 1940s.

I haven’t actually looked at them very closely. Many though are from the war years. This ink seal appears on the back of several of the envelopes.

Old letters, like perhaps nothing else provide a glimpse into what life was like “back in the day.”

(The paragraph in the middle reads: “Right now, I’m on a week-end + and not a thing to do – the deadest play on Earth is Moncton I believe”).

(The middle paragraph reads: “We had a very nice crop of potatoes and price is very encouraging. $9.00 at present”).

I’m curious though about what you think of the act of saving old letters from the trash. I’m of the opinion that they have great historical value and should be saved from destruction. However, others might make the argument that looking at old letters is an invasion of privacy, and that they should stay on the curb.

What do you think? Let us know in the comments!

I’ve been finding some pretty great stuff recently… I hope it keeps up this week!

In other news

My eBay score is now over 100, meaning that I’ve received over 100 positive feedback votes. It’s at 105 as I write. I think of this as a sort of milestone. It’s taken a long time, and a lot of sales to get to that level, especially because many people don’t leave feedback. I’m proud of the achievement, and eBay has given me a baby blue star next to my username as a result.

I also got my first negative comment on the blog. It was pretty offensive, with “filthy canuck vermin!” being a phrase of note. I deleted it because it wasn’t really productive, but it was interesting that I finally got one after 3181 comments and 392,599 page views.

Last week’s garbage sales (March 16 – March 22)

1. HP Laptop: On Kijiji for 80$. I finally listed it this week and a couple people emailed me within a day. Found a little over a month ago in Cote St-Luc.

2. Guy Vidal brutalist earrings: On Etsy for 100$. These sold within a day to someone in Ottawa. Featured in last week’s post, and found in NDG.
3. “Krasnaya Moskva” Soviet perfume: On eBay for 25$. I’ve already received positive feedback. Found in Cote-des-Neiges in August of 2014.
4. Order of Ahepa 1958 Supreme Convention program: On eBay for 30$. Found in Ville St Laurent September 2014.
5. Serengeti Solano sunglasses: On eBay for 37$. I forget where I found these, but it was somewhere rich.
6. Box of Israeli phono-card samples: On eBay for 33$. This was one of my oldest finds still in my possession. I found these cards probably six years ago when I still lived in Ottawa. I kept them in mu bookcase for all these years, but figured it was time to move on and listed them on eBay. I’m glad to see them go. FYI: phono-cards were postcards with little records printed on them, and they were somewhat popular in the 50s.

7. Four bird pendants: to a reader for 10$. You can see them mixed in with the jewelry above. Found a couple weeks ago in Hampstead.

Total: 318$, 13439$ since May 18 2014 and 3756$ since the new year began. Another solid week. I’m very happy with my profits of late. It’s crazy how far I’ve come as a seller even just in this last year.

New listings

1. American Psychiatric Association; DSM II SECOND EDITION, 1968 APA
2. Lot of 3 WWII-era felt patches – North Shore Regiment New Brunswick, 2 Canada
3. Vintage 70s Barbudo COSMOS Eyeglasses Frames, 22KT Gold Plated, Made in Spain
4. Vintage Black Martin Wells 50s Eyeglasses Frames, Size 48-24, Made in Australia
5. Vintage Guy Vidal earrings, pewter, 1960s modernist / brutalist style, dangle (SOLD!)
6. Serengeti sunglasses Solano DR 5641, Drivers, Made in Italy (SOLD!)
7. Rare Israel Phono-Cards – Box of Samples (4) – 1950s Judaica, Postcard, Jewish
8. Order Ahepa 32nd Supreme Convention 1958, Boston, Greek Greece American Canadian (SOLD!)

If you have a question, see anything that you’re interesting in buying, or to just want to say hello feel free to email me at I also enjoy reading your comments! Keep in mind that I frequently get behind on emails, so I apologize in advance if I take a few days or weeks to get back to you.

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