Brand new junk

The weather hasn’t really been conducive to trash picking lately. On the night I happened across this stuff there was heavy, icy pellet like snow. Since then, there’s been two separate 30-some centimeter dumps, each of which made driving (and parking anywhere) in the city a major pain until they were cleared, and finally another 10cm or so just to top things off.

(Now, as I write this, it’s about -40c out with windchill).

When there’s that much snow, I only go out when I have some interesting spots to check, and I don’t really have any of those right now (other than the book tossers, who will probably be featured in my new post). So, I haven’t been doing much hunting recently, and when I have gone out, I haven’t found much of anything. Well, anything besides the aforementioned books and this haul, which was mostly Alibaba quality vape / marijuana paraphernalia (it’s legal here in Canada, for what it’s worth), which I’m guessing it was once someone’s side hustle.

There were several big boxes stuffed with disposable vapes on the curb. I took three boxes filled with product that was still sealed – the rest looked new, but on closer inspection they had been opened. I figured the unopened product was probably “too good to be true,” but I decided to give them a chance. Indeed, they were all garbage; old and leaky and low-quality from the day they were made (probably why the other ones had been opened, and then thrown out). Back to the curb they went, which is probably for the best because I’m not sure the legality of selling vapes with nicotine anyways.

(It’s hard to think of a product less environmentally friendly than a disposable vape).

I didn’t put a lot of effort into photographing this stuff, because a lot of it was pure crap.  Cheap, cheap, cheap… but there is a market for that clearly, such as first year University students with bad taste. Some was alright, like a bunch of light up weed trays with Rick and Morty on them (or whoever, in the white boxes in the third pic). The Nintendo emulator looked new, so that’s a nice find if it works. I also found lots of regular vapes and electronic lighters with dragon motifs and so on, all of which would need to be tested.

More decent stuff here, like a bunch of brand new corn cob pipes, a dozen or so run-of-the-mill glass pipes, and the “glass hookahs” in those little boxes. The pendant grinders are stupid novelty products, but someone will buy them.

One of my better finds was a huge load of grinders, a lot of which were still wrapped in their original plastic with price tags attached. Most came out of the black rolling trash bin.

I saved well over a hundred. Most were decent quality, just the plastic topped ones were notably cheap.

I also found eight unopened packs of rolling papers. These 50-packs appear to sell for around 60 USD new, so that’s a nice get.

Come yard sale season this haul should make me good money. It’s a lot of work organizing this, but thankfully I have someone who can help me with that (and selling as well). I’m happy to give them a good cut of the profits, because I don’t have the time or the interest to do it myself.

So, not my favourite haul obviously, but it’s something different and money is money. I prefer the historical finds though, and I’ll share some of those in my next post.


1. My eBay listings, Sign up for eBay (Canada, US), Search for something you want / research something you have (Canada, US) – FYI these are Ebay Partner Network links, so I make a few bucks if you sign up for an account or buy something after getting to eBay using these links
2. Facebook page
3. Follow @garbagefinds and @garbagefindssells (selling account, operated by someone else) on Instagram
4. Email: – note that I can’t fulfill most requests for items, many are already gone by the time they are posted here.

15 thoughts on “Brand new junk”

  1. Oh my!! I am from California where this stuff is legal but I don’t know about resale. However you could surely sell the rolling papers on eBay. Thanks for saving it all from the landfill, even if your mother does not approve! Sounds pretty cold temps over there. Hope you are keeping busy and getting ready for Springtime and the big clean outs that will surely be coming. Good days ahead, Martin. Thanks for posting. Always a delight to see a new one from you.

    1. I can’t recall disapproving of anything my son rescues from the landfill. A rescue is a rescue, but you have to admit that some rescues have more inherent worth, in terms of history and culture.

  2. Book tossers? That piques my interest. Minus 10 here in Wisconsin so pickings are slim as well. Glad to hear you are well and following your jam.

  3. Thank you for reducing the waste stream so much, even when it’s not highly profitable. There is so much more value to what you do than your income stream indicates. Have you ever considered a Patreon? (If this is something you would like to continue doing, which of course, you may not). In any case, thank you for once again for preventing even more from going straight to the landfill. If karma meters exist, yours is full.

    1. I was flying high in 2020 (“bumper crop”) but these days I’m mostly just paying the bills… though my productivity has been terrible this past year (can hardly focus these days) and I probably could make more if I tried. I don’t know much about Patreon but I think part of it involves exclusive content, I’d prefer everyone had access. What I probably should do is trying to get a grant to write a book, but again focus is a challenge.

  4. Thanks for sharing this. The cold spell appears to be over here in Ontario so I hope warmer weather is heading your way. I had never really thought of the environmental side of vaping. I recently discussed cigarette filters in one of my blog posts but you’re right, disposable vapes are far worse…and I’m not convinced they’re better for our health than smoking!

    1. I have no evidence to back this up, but I suspect you’re better off smoking than vaping, especially if you’re smoking these cheap mystery fluids from China.

      Today is going to be pretty cold, but it eases up after that.

  5. Score! That was a gift from the universe to you, lots of good, popular product is going to sell.

  6. I’m intrigued by the book tosses as well. I enjoy reading about your findings and the pictures! Keep up the good work! Best luck 🍀❤️ from Texas .

  7. Martin, all of your posts are incredibly interesting. If you need a pro bono ghost writer/biographer I just might volunteer. I think what you do needs to get out there. I envision a documentary/short series too.

    Spring might yield some treasures; boomers aren’t getting any younger. If relatives need to clear out a house or apartment after someone passes or goes into assisted living, they might just take to binning it all rather than sort through things, which I suspect is where your best finds come from.

    1. Ideally I’ll be writing my own biography/book sooner rather than later. Been talking about it for too long. You’re right about that, a lot of my best finds are a result of people clearing out a house after someone has passed. Most of the rest is from people moving and ditching their old “junk”

  8. Martin, I get your frustration. I have a part-time antiques/vintage booth, and it can snowball into too much stuff rather easily. Do you have any indoor flea markets in your area? It may give you a way to meet others and to become a picker for dealers/decorators. You have a great eye.

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