By Nikki Pelezo / Dirt Roads
Estate sales, garage sales, yard sales even flea markets are fun places to go, you can sometimes get the deal of a lifetime. My only problem with getting that deal of a lifetime is the Bad Mojo that goes along with the item. What do I mean by Bad Mojo? Let me give you an example. You have Aunt Betty’s potato masher. You loved Aunt Betty and her mashed potatoes especially at Thanksgiving. This wonderful potato masher is all you have to remember Aunt Betty. You love it above all things and you are going to sell it at your garage sale for a dollar.
I arrive at your garage sale, tired, sweaty and slightly broke. The very first thing I pick up is Aunt Betty’s potato masher. I hand over my dollar, and you take it from me, but for some strange reason our eyes meet and you have this profound urge to gather me in and make me the new owner of Aunt Betty’s potato masher and the keeper of your memories. You spend a good 40 minutes telling me about Aunt Betty and her wonderful mashed potatoes and her using this fine utensil.
This is the point where Nikki is now in possession of another keepsake. You have transferred your guilt to me. From now on your only memory of Aunt Betty will be how well she could cook and how much you loved her. You have relieved yourself of the physical memory, but have given it to some schmuck dumb enough to buy Aunt Betty’s potato masher.
At the end of the day I place Aunt Betty’s potato masher up in the attic along with three tons of memories that aren’t even mine. I have in my possession Grandpa Boudreaux’s handmade cypress ladder back chair that he whittled himself back in 1902 in Broussard, Louisiana which I purchased from a yard sale at Joaquin, Texas back in 1989 for $2.00. I can’t use it, I can’t sell it, I can’t even see it under the mountain of other people’s memories because his grandson put the Bad Mojo on Grandpa’s handmade chair. And some woman in Dingle, Idaho made me buy the little vintage pink makeup jar that once held little brother’s baby teeth.
If you have a garage sale and you see a rather fluffy grayed-haired broad pick up your mother’s kidskin gloves, please keep your mouth shut. Take her money and let her do with them as she wants, not keep them up in a dark, hot attic holding your memories.