I’m doing the occasional car route these days, but most of my trips have been via bike to the Plateau and Mile End. These treks are good exercise and occasionally productive, more often now because the cold encourages most of the other pickers to stay home.

Around the new year I checked out the McGill area to see if I’d find any move-out stuff, thinking that some students might move and ditch their old crap after the fall semester. I did find a little bit of stuff, but not much of any value. Still, I’ll probably give it a go again next year as maybe I’ll be luckier. My favourite find from McGill was this collection of mostly full teas, some of which look pretty fancy.


I’ve been finding a bit of neat stuff over the past few weeks at a spot in the Mile End. It seems like someone’s slowly clearing out an apartment.


I think these things belonged to someone from the Balkans. The cool hand carved ashtray on the left is marked as being made in Zagreb in 1963, while the ashtray on the bottom is signed Sarajevo. If anyone can tell me what’s written on the cigarette case I’d be interested to hear it!


The fan features sticker images from different touristy spots in Quebec. Sorry it’s a bit blurry! The Minolta 16 camera is quite small and cool looking. They’re not super valuable, but the camera is great yard sale material. It’s in nice cosmetic condition, and comes with a flash. The negatives are medium format and look to be from the 60s.


For whatever reason there were a bunch of watch cases without any insides. They looks cool, again not worth much but good for yard sales. I figure someone will want the roll of scrap leather. It’s hard to make it out from the photo, but the leather pouch on the left was made for the Boy Scouts. I don’t know what it would have held. There were a few photos left over in that Limocolor photo holder, but most of the photos I’ve seen in the bags were ripped up before I got there.

The most valuable pieces I’ve found there so far are probably the pewter figurines. I think they were made for Dungeons and Dragons, by a company called Ral Partha. This kind of stuff has value, and from my research I think I can get around 50$ for the lot.

I’m keeping an eye on that spot, and will let you know if I come across anything else that’s cool! I also saved a bunch of decent looking silk scarves, as well as a few bits of clothes but unfortunately I don’t have any pictures of those.


Otherwise, the late January move-out trash has been surprisingly good thus far. I’ve been focusing a bit more lately on yuppie trash, making sure to bike past the nicer condo units in the area. So far the strategy seems to be working well enough. I found this nearly full bottle of Guerlain “La Petite Robe Noire” EdP in front of a nice house on Laurier, and was able to quickly flip it for 30$.


I found a bunch of other scents elsewhere, including another by Guerlain. I don’t really like these ones because they remind me of high school gym class, but hopefully I can make some money off them regardless.


More interesting was a large collection of photos (lots more than what’s shown here!) that someone took of various sporting events. I haven’t had a chance yet to look at them much, but a lot of the photos are of car races and some are from an NFL game with Peyton Manning at quarterback.

My favourites though were some shots of an Expos game. They were probably taken in ’98 or ’99 as those were the years when Brad Fullmer played regularly in Montreal. The photographer largely focused on Mark McGuire and Vladimir Guerrero, the latter of which was one of my favourite players back in the day. I only really got into baseball around 2002, so it’s cool to see these photos that remind me of those early years. I’ll probably keep a shot or two of Vladdy and sell the rest at a yard sale. A lot of them are decent photos – I’d bet they were taken by an amateur with a relatively expensive camera.


I came across a box full of vintage baby clothes while touring around Outremont. A lot of them still have their original tags on – they were made by a company called Lebretton, which I can’t find much reference to on google. Still, they’re very cute and people on Instagram said they’d do well on Etsy. Some have minor stains, but I figure the ones on white fabric might be easy to spot bleach away.


While out on one of my morning walks I happened across a pile of bags in front of a recently sold apartment. From it I saved a whole bunch of decent, re-usable junk. Fortunately there was an empty box nearby as I didn’t have my backpack on me. I took a chance on that maple creme liqueur but it was definitely past its prime. Down the drain it went, but at least I recycled the bottle.


The most valuable single item from that pile was probably this nice Lampe Berger. Based on my research I should be able to sell it for around 40$ + shipping. The rest (again) was decent yard sale junk.


Otherwise, I came up mostly empty from a run through the Plateau (east of St Denis) except for a find from this box of junk. It didn’t look like much, but I figured I’d poke around anyways.


Amongst the crap was an old container (my guess is that it held margarine) filled with curiosities, including a few pieces of bone, a drawing of a dove, a small crystal, an empty bullet, and a 10k gold ring. Someone on Instagram said it looked like “black magic” and recommended I put it back. I do think it looks a bit like black magic, but I’m definitely keeping the gold ring. It’s just junk gold, but because it’s fairly hefty at 3.75g it should make me around 65$. Not bad!



Otherwise, I’ll save perhaps my best recent find until next time!

Relevant links

1. Facebook page
2. My eBay listings
3. Etsy store
4. Kijiji listings
5. Contribute to Garbagefinds.com

Email: thingsifindinthegarbage@gmail.com. I often fall behind on emails, so I apologize in advance if it takes me a while to get back to you.

30 thoughts on “Vladdy”

  1. The worlds on the cigarette box are: Ohrid Sv. Naum – in Cyril lettering, that’s used in the Macedonian Republic.
    Ohrid is a lake, also a city on the border of Macedonia and Albania.
    Sv. Naum – Saint Naum is a monastery, named after a Greek-orthodox saint. The picture is probably of the monastery itself.
    I greatly enjoy your findings that come from all over the world. Good hunting! You’re doing a big service to all of us, showing how everything can be reused, recycled, repaired. Thanks.

  2. Once again you startle our eyes to what people dispose of,great work at rescuing the items.Imagine archeologists in 150 years time digging into a mountain and finding the items of yesteryear? Keep poking around and hope you don’t get caught!

  3. The watch cases aren’t in gold? Check for stamps. I recently bought a lot of watches for $30, made about $300 in Gold from one case and another $500 for one of the watches (some rare Enicar model).

    1. When I was in Brownies and Girl Guides, we had similar pouches on our uniform belt. We used it to carry our weekly “dues”. I think back then (in the mid 80’s) it was $1.25 🙂

      1. Gosh, when I was in Brownies {and maybe into Juniors}, my dues were 10 cents (US). I guess I’m showing my age! 60, born in 1956!

  4. Glad to see you back! I was going into DTs waiting for your post They’re quite addictive, you know. 😀

    Most of these items may be destined for yard sales, but a very interesting batch of odds and ends nonetheless. I look forward to poking through it all when I see you on Friday.

    If you still have that Rose tea, I’ll buy it off you when I see you (and maybe one or two of the others too). Also the two small skeleton keys – I see they have my name written on them, hahaha.

    $50, eh? I know Jim has a gang of those pewter D&D figures around here somewhere.

    It’s so cool that you found those Expos baseball pics. Maybe one of these days, you’ll dig a Vladdy bobblehead out of a garbage bag.

    You have me champing at the bit to clap eyes on that “best recent find”. Must put on my patience hat. 🙂

    1. Lol, I’d love to find more Expos stuff. I haven’t really found that much surprisingly.

      Send me a picture of the figurines and maybe I can help price them. Some are worth more than others, while some are worth a lot.

  5. You’re right. I had one of those, and I did use it for the dues. It was something you could buy, I don’t think it had a specific purpose.

    I certainly kept my compass on a hook on my belt.


  6. I love your blog.I collect and listen to vinyl records myself.But I hate anti-clutter articles in magazines,newspapers,etc and Tv shows on clutter.
    Read this great article.
    When decluttering is not all it’s cracked up to be-treehugger.com

    Katherine Martinko

    Katherine Martinko (@feistyredhair)
    Living / Culture
    March 30, 2016

    For refugees, immigrants, and others who have lived through tight times, Marie Kondo’s celebrated method of decluttering reflects privilege and is a surprising act of trust.

    Marie Kondo’s method of decluttering and minimizing one’s possessions has become hugely popular in North America. Her book, “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up,” has been a New York Times bestseller and sold more than three million copies. It’s not all that surprising, when you consider the sheer quantity of stuff that most people own these days. The KonMari method, as it’s called, gives us permission to let go, and sometime that’s all we need to hear.

    But there are problems with KonMari, as Arielle Bernstein points out in an article called “Marie Kondo and the Privilege of Clutter,” published in The Atlantic. Being able to declutter is, in fact, a privilege and is grounded in the knowledge that we can acquire other things if needed. She writes:

    “It’s easy to see the items we own as oppressive when we can so easily buy new ones.”

    Bernstein explains how decluttering is a very different experience for refugees and immigrants, who have been forced to leave everything behind and start over again elsewhere. For them the thought of discarding perfectly good items that simply do not spark sufficient joy (which is Kondo’s famous phrase) is horrifying and incomprehensible. It also puts one in a precarious and ill-prepared situation in times of potential difficulty or scarcity.

    “In order to feel comfortable throwing out all your old socks and handbags, you have to feel pretty confident that you can easily get new ones. Embracing a minimalist lifestyle is an act of trust. For a refugee, that trust has not yet been earned.”

    I have experienced this firsthand, as I continue to assist with the resettlement of a huge Syrian refugee family (two parents and 12 kids, including an infant) in my small Canadian town. They arrived earlier this winter, and when I picked them up at the airport they had only three suitcases for the entire family. They had less stuff than I do when traveling with my three small children. Since then, I’ve witnessed how important material belongings are for them. They can’t get enough of the donated clothes, shoes, furniture, bikes, etc. They seem incapable of saying ‘no’ to anything that is offered because they know how precious those objects are and how luxurious it is to have them.

    It brings to mind the 20/20 rule used by The Minimalists – the idea that you should never pack any “just in case” items for a trip if you can buy it for under $20 in less than 20 minutes from your current location. While it’s an intriguing idea, it also reeks of privilege – of having $20 on hand, of having access to transportation, of having time to buy whatever you need at the last minute. For a refugee or immigrant – and my grandmother, who lived through the Great Depression – the 20/20 rule would seem absurd, as they understand the value of conserving what one has and being ready for anything.

    Bernstein also takes issue with the moralizing aspect of KonMari: “Emotions throughout both of her books are presented as being as simple as her drawings. You either feel pure love for an object or you let it go.”

    It’s much more complicated than that, especially if someone has been forced to go without for extended periods of time. Material objects become a way by which a person defines him/herself, or at least the items are treasured in a way that the current consumerist, disposable shopping culture does not encourage. Purging one’s life of those same objects can potentially affect one’s sense of self.

    “If our life is made from the objects we collect over time, then surely our very sense of who we are is dependent upon the things we carry.”

    Those words ring true with my refugee family, who have been forcibly ‘decluttered’ to the point of having 14 people’s worldly belongings crammed into only three suitcases. They could never do KonMari because they don’t have enough. Meanwhile, there is an ongoing ‘discard box’ waiting for drop-off at the thrift store, where I toss anything that no longer fits, feels good, or appeals. It hardly seems fair.

  7. Please go to Haddon Hall,a luxury apartment complex on Sherbrooke street west just two blocks east from Atwater street,in downtown.There are 14 to 16 big blue plastic recycling bins with lids on top on Lambert Closse street between Lincoln and Sherbrooke street every Wednesday morning.There are also another 14 to 15 big blue plastic recycling bins with lids on top on Chomedey street between Lincoln and Sherbrooke streets,outside Haddon Hall every Wednesday morning. Inside you sometimes find great books,vases,vinyl records,historic letters,etc.Remember the tenants of this building are quite wealthy.

    1. I’ll keep that in mind. Haven’t been out that way in a while, in large part because of all the road work going on that kind of makes it a pain to get there.

  8. Those pewter figurines are indeed from a Dungeons & Dragons set; my son just confirmed it (he is a fan) and said that they have do have decent value.
    Thanks again for doing this.

    1. Cool. I think they may be worth closer to 30$ for the set vs the 50$ I have them up for, but I can always lower the price later if they don’t sell.

  9. A number of home owners in NDG,Cote St.Luc,Westmount and Ahuntsic start clearing out their homes right now to put their houses up for sale in spring.Before welcoming potential buyers into their homes,they often throw out a lot of good stuff in February ,March and April.Do not forget this.

  10. Your blog is so good .I live in a rural area in Quebec near Vermont ,not far from the American border.I visit New York city every month and come to Montreal a couple of times a month.Unfortunately where I live there is little interesting trash to pick from.I am strongly hoping THE New York Times and other American newspapers will feature an article about your blog.That would give you a huge boost and further increase your visibility.You already have more than 5,320 subscribers to your blog.
    A reader posted a wonderful article on the comments section a few weeks back saying that Canadians and Americans produce the most garbage per capita in the world.You should also continue to teach people on how to reduce waste.

  11. Please post some of the car racing pics. I might be interested in buying them.

    1. I’m not sure when I’ll get to that. Do you live in Montreal? You could always check them out when I do my next yard sale.

  12. On Lakeshore Road in Dorval and Pointe Claire there are luxury homes.I am sure you would find good stuff on the curb on trash day there.

    1. Ok, next time I go to the storage I’ll track them down and see what they are. I think it was Indycar, maybe the race that happens in Montreal but I’m not a car racing guy so I can’t say for sure.

Comments are closed.