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Yard Sales & Social Responsibility

June 6, 2009

On a whim, I accompanied my daughter for a day of yard “saling” – visiting the various multi-neighborhood, library, and Boy Scout sales that seem to be the forerunner of summer in my town.  It got me thinking that yard sales deserve more respect as they address our most pressing contemporary issues.

Being Green – Buying and selling things at yard sales is probably one of the most environmentally responsible things to do. Yard sales keep unwanted items from the waste stream, provide economic benefit to the seller (those dollars and quarters add up!), and supply buyers with usable items that they might otherwise purchase new (thus preventing additional raw material and energy consumption in their manufacture).  

Being Frugal – not as noble as being green, but getting a deal is exciting! My daughter nabbed an antique chair desk for $5, four FREE metal beer signs for the “man room,” industrial strength cookie sheet for a buck, and more books than she could carry – not one for more than a dollar.  I picked up books, too, those that I’ve wanted to read, but not enough to pay retail.  I got a great wall organizer for my soon-to-be craft room for a buck, 2 Pottery Barn-like candle lanterns for the front porch ($1 for the set), and, at the risk of adding to my own castaways, a brand new Pilates DVD with exercise blocks ($1).

Being Social – Who knew yard sales would be such a social event? Not only did I meet some nice people selling their stuff, but also I ran into some old friends and acquaintances along the way.  In this day and age when people don’t even know their next-door neighbors, yard sales get us out from behind our computers to actually talk to each other.

Who would have thought that rummaging through other people’s junk would be the socially responsible thing to do?  Not only that, but it was fun!  Where else would you find a set of marble horse head bookends and a WW1 canvas cot?

One Comment leave one →
  1. June 15, 2009 8:36 pm

    I like this one and always seem to be driving past yard sales but never really stopping. Pilates and books, perhaps a stop is in my future.

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