Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Wednesday Ruminations


My wife and I have a few things for sale on Facebook, but everybody wants a deal. To even get any interest, you have to price things at 10-20 percent of their original value, even if they’re unused. Then, some folks immediately try to get you to lower your price. I was raised that you didn’t try to haggle if you haven’t yet even seen the product. I realize that some folks only have so much to spend, but if they can’t afford the price listed, why would they even call? I swear, I believe that if you offered free solid gold bars, some jerk would ask how much you’d pay him to haul them away!

Some folks seem to feel entitled, too. I’ll never forget the couple (obviously dealers) who came to a yard sale we had and offered an insanely low amount for our whole porch-full of stuff. I told them that if we didn’t get enough to make it worth our while we’d just give it to charity. They could barely contain their wrath as they asked why we’d turn down their offer just to give it away. I just told them that if they thought our prices were too high, that they could check the following week and see if the Salvation Army priced the stuff any lower than we did. They left very unhappy folks. We always hear about dishonest merchants, but sometimes I think we need to remember that the customer should have a little couth, as well.

The Easter flowers (daffodils) are beginning to come into bloom around here. You can often spot old homesteads through the still-bare woods by seeing clumps of yellow flowers in the distance. There’s a spot I know of between a couple large businesses and the railroad tracks where a small rise has a flat top and a huge old maple tree. I told my wife that I was positive there was once a house there. Sure enough, when we went by today, the small stand of young timber now covering the area was filled with yellow and white blooms. When everything else is gone, the Easter flowers seem to remain and thrive.

As I sat on the porch with the Mighty Dachshund this evening, I saw the first bat of the year, flying back and forth over our side lawn. I hope he thins the mosquitoes well, I saw the first of them when the snow was still on. Unlike my wife, I like seeing them around, knowing that they prodigious eaters of bugs. You can get too many in a barn, though. We’ve had so many in times past, that their guano began ruining too much hay. So, we had to thin them down. THAT”S not an easy job! We’ve had two bats get in the house over the years, too. I’ve learned to turn on every light in the house and keep them moving. They eventually seek the darkness outside the open door.

I’m starting to watch for spring greens. It won’t be long now. My wife complained so much about the smell that I promised I wouldn’t cook any more in the house. I didn’t think they smelled at all, so I suppose it’s really just a way to keep me from using the kitchen. She doesn’t seem to mind the smell of cooked cabbage, even though I tell her that “it smells like it’s already been et once.” I really should try watching for morels this year, too, but I think the deer get them all around here. My wife thinks I’m weird eating wild foods, even though she grew up with a mother who foraged. I tell her that they’re the only truly safe foods that you can get. Oh well, her loss.

I found a home for the “invasive species walking stick” from my previous post. A young man that I used to work with has a severe weight problem and is beginning to walk the trails in a nearby park. (I should do the same.)  He was impressed by the stick’s appearance, so I gave it to him. He seemed to really appreciate it. I’m glad it’s going to a good home. © 2014


Sixbears said...

My son-in-law just sold a special leather jacket on ebay. At first he asked for $300. No takers. He kept raising the price every time he listed it. Finally sold for $475. Go figure.

Gorges Smythe said...

lol Snob appeal, I reckon, Sixbears!

Ralph Goff said...

I guess that saying about the customer always being right might not be so true.
One of these days I need to try selling on ebay.

Gorges Smythe said...

I found it to be a pain, Ralph. More because of eBay and PayPal than the customers.

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

We're having Batfest here this weekend at Onondaga Cave and the World Bird Sanctuary. My knee is bad right now so I doubt I'll go to the cave although it would be fun.
Good luck with the sales.

Gorges Smythe said...

Hope your knee is better soon, Kathy. (And thanks.)

Mamahen said...

Sounds like my "luck" If I try to buy an item, it's a priceless antique! I i'm selling it, it's worthless lol. The walking stick was very cool. I hope it serves him well :))

JaneofVirginia said...

I have had similar experiences on Ebay. I think people think that they don't have to look you in the eye, and so therefore they offer very low prices. I have bought very well on "Buy it now" on Ebay, but never made much selling.
It's just one more indication of just how bad the economy probably really is !
Best wishes to you and yours,

Gorges Smythe said...

I'm sure the Obamaconomy has something to do with many of them, Jane.

Cathy M. said...

People can be such irritating little pi$$ ants! I need to have a yard sale, but I HATE the thought of all the haggling.

I love spring turnip greens, but it's too early to find any here. When I upgraded my kitchen, I installed an outside venting fan just because my husband hates the smell of turnip greens.

Gorges Smythe said...

I should do that, Cathy; we lost our vent system when we changed stoves. Guess it's time for a new one.