Sunnyside

Quality finds were pretty hard to come by all through February and so far in March, but I expect things to pick up once spring cleaning gets going. Here’s some stuff from late September, when some rich folks moved from a house they’d clearly been in for a while. They were nice, and told me to take whatever I wanted.

This bag interested me because I saw a jewelry/trinket box poking out the side. I brought the whole bag to the car and sorted through it there, partly for convenience and partly because people can be weird about their bags. Most of my best finds were inside.

A lot of it was kids stuff from the 70s and 80s. I brought these games, electronic and otherwise to the auction where they sold for 60$ or so.

I also brought them mementos from a slightly controversial 1986 class trip to the Soviet Union. They sold for 22$ if I recall correctly.

Here’s some sunglasses and watches, the nicest of which were vintage Timex. Nothing super fancy, but they did sell on eBay for a bit.

I saved a lot of miscellaneous “quality junk,” the kind of stuff which is fun for yard sales.

Some of this stuff, like the “thumbcuffs,” were sold on my new Instagram account “garbagefindssells.” To be clear, I got someone else (Katie) to run the account in exchange for a good cut of the profits because I suck at doing that kind of thing. So far it’s gone as well as I could possibly have hoped, helping me unload a certain class of item more quickly and for more money than I’d get at the yard sale or at auction. Also, I like how the format helps to highlight certain items that might not look like much at first glance.

If someone wants to go back in time and beat the 1980 Selwyn House football team I got their playbook!

Lightly used wallets are always a hit at my yard sales, and these ones weren’t even used!

Believe it or not vintage batteries can sell for decent money on eBay. I’ve been stashing them away for a while, and now I might have enough for a lot. 

As is often the case, my most valuable finds were some bits of jewelry. I saved a silver Wolf Cubs ring, silver Mount Stephen Club cufflinks, a large silver ring with the word “veritas” and a lion on it, a 14k gold razor blade pendant, and a gold chain with a skeleton key pendant attached. All in all, this spot netted me several hundred to a thousand dollars worth of stuff.

I know I said I would post more, but I’ve been feeling uninspired to say the least. Depressed is probably a better word. I blame February, the weather and the 8pm curfew we had, which our all-knowing Premier graciously extended to 9:30pm yesterday. I suppose the curfew is all well and good if you have a family to go to home to, but for us single folk it can be a pretty isolating experience. Plus, I’m not sure it accomplished anything. Cases are down, sure, but in my opinion that’s due to the other restrictions. Anyone who tried doing grocery shopping before curfew started knows first-hand that forcing people to go to the store (or do anything, for that matter) around the same time isn’t a great way to encourage social distancing. Anyways, don’t get me started!

I look forward to the warmer weather, the later curfew (and, perhaps one day no curfew), and finding good trash again.

14 thoughts on “Sunnyside”

  1. Thank you so much for all the good you do and for sharing it with us. Your writing is clear and your photos make it easy to see what you find. Onward to summer and freedom!

  2. You’re back! Colour me happy to find a notification of a new garbagefinds post in my inbox!
    It must be nice when you come across accommodating rich-folks scrappers.
    I used to have a small telescope on a tripod that was housed in a brown case quite similar to that one! Nice piece.

  3. Very nice finds, very neatly arrayed in the photos. I’m glad too the curfew is now less strict and when garage sale season starts, times will be even better!

  4. You all have a curfew there! Unbelievable. I’m in Texas and I don’t think we ever had a curfew. We have no restrictions now, except if an establishment has a restriction in order to enter. The grocery stores still have face masks required but not many people adhere to it and the stores don’t enforce it. I’m 76 and fully vaccinated and have never gotten COVID. I started going to the store at least once a week by the end of March 2020 and I’ve always worn a mask. Hope you PM stops being oppressive soon.

  5. So sorry you are feeling down, Martin. Tough times we are having for sure, but better weather and longer days are on the horizon, and hopefully things will go back to normal-ish soon. Thanks for the post as I always get a thrill when I see a new one and I love seeing what you find and how you photograph it, as well as your profit on others trash. Hope you have brighter days ahead.

  6. Hey, I hear you about February being a tough month. The sap is running fast now and that means t-shirt weather and yard sales won’t be long. As the son of an auctioneer, I love looking through your finds. Really find your work to be interesting and worthwhile! Virtual hug to you, buddy!

  7. Glad to hear you are feeling better Martin, winter is tough (especially in Montreal! during a pandemic) Plus, I understand your feelings of isolation during a lockdown as a single myself. Luckily, my dog helps. Keep up with your wonderful finds. I still can’t get over people literally throwing away gold and silver jewelry!

  8. Thanks for another great blog post illuminating the extraordinary work you do, Martin. I just started following you on IG. What a blessing to find a family who encouraged you to scavenge what they are discarding. It never ceases to amaze me that we human beings discard!!! Well done, well done, well done!

  9. Hi Martin, Great finds. Love to see gold. The cufflinks with the blue are very beautiful. Winter is hard on everyone’s psyche. I think lack of sunshine and Vitamin D has been shown to cause depression. I try to take supplements when I remember. We have Goodwill outlets here, which are large bins of unsold store merchandise you pay for by the pound. Just like dumpster diving with a small cost of $1.99 per pound or less and out of the cold. I found new useful things, very old things like a hand hooked Victorian dollhouse rug ($30) and valuable things like a Sterling Parker Pen from France. It was fun and stimulating because I had to change up my buying strategy based on weight. I found a pink Kromex spice shelf. It was missing the bottles, but someone bought it quickly for $20 because the complete colored sets sell for $250 up.

  10. Nice haul, Martin! Spring cleaning season is starting so I’m sure you’ll have some good luck. The great weather this weekend should also help to boost morale. Love those cufflinks and matching tie tack in the last photo, and the gold. I’m glad to hear that the homeowners were nice, for a change.

  11. Sorry to hear you’re feeling down, Martin. Hang on in there. This COVID hell will be over soon and spring really is just around the corner.

    I’ve been enjoying your posts very much. So good! Always fascinating and a lot of fun. Keep it up. When you’re ready, that is.

  12. I love to scavenge part-time but unfortunately the curfew is holding me back this year.I tended to find great treasures on the curbside at night last year sometimes but cannot do it any more.By the time I Wake up in the morning and go out at around 10 am,the garbage truck has already passed on most Streets.
    I admire your perseverance,tenacity and great finds.Do not let critics discourage you.These days in your posts you do not seem to mention in which neighborhoods you find your treasures.In upcoming posts,please do so.

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