Sunday, January 2, 2011

Free Time, Day Two: A day of dibs.

I started today so refreshed, while refreshing.

Refreshing the craigslist free stuff, after having taken a refreshing shower.

I was up long before I needed to be, ready to pick up the chairs I dibs yesterday. That wasn't happening until 11 am.

So while enjoying my coffee, I hit the list.

I know a bit about mid-century items. So cool, so atomic, so retro-fabulous. So this ad compelled me to call, straight away:

Free 1960s era mid century minimalist desk

And there was a phone number on the listing.

So of course I called, and a charming gentleman answered right away.

It was 8:30 this morning, and he was already on his way to seal the desk deal with someone else.

But he and I chatted, and he let me in on the fact that he had a pod full of stuff he was giving away that is his mother's. She's moving into an assisted living setting, and he's in charge of her stuff.

I told him what I was doing; accumulating necessary items for people in need for whatever reason, and he was intrigued.

He told me about a book. Material World: A Global Family Portrait. Photographer Peter Menzel took pictures of 30 families all over the globe, in front of the accumulation of all of their possessions.

This photo is the result of a family's stuff who lives in Japan.

I didn't get the desk, but I did have a great conversation with this person, who indicated that he gives this book to his friends, because, as he said, it's life-changing. The items we collect, culturally, truly resonate in terms of sheer mass.

Early score! A great conversation with a totally cool guy. He had no monetary attachment to stuff, which was so refreshing. Our conversation was an education.

And it was also a teaching tool, because the early bird does catch the worm when it comes to free stuff on craigslist.

Refresh, refresh, refresh.

I was doing just that as Mr. Fabulous and I headed to our 11 am destination. Leather chairs with a bit of wear, my dibs from yesterday. When we arrived at the home of Skip and Trish, this is what we loaded in the truck.
We travelled a total of 48 miles. I think every mile was worth it.

There are a few scratches, made by pets. Mr. Fab and I surmised that Skip and Trish probably didn't have kids, save for their pets. And their house was fan-freaking-tastic.

Again, a sign that no kids were present.

I have nothing against kids. I have two of them, myself. They're great! I wouldn't change a thing! But I do know that Skip and Trish have a house with the look and feel of a show home, and I'd venture to guess that their pets are the ruling party when it comes to offspring.

I do love these chairs. Yes, they have a few scratchy scratches, but it was very easy to google all kinds of information about how to mitigate such flaws. The chairs are so lovely, so leathery. Their shade, according to the label I found, is espresso.

And now the chairs are in my garage, despite the fact that I'd like to put at least one somewhere in my own house.

But this is not about me.

Would that it were. I have the perfect spot for at least one of these chairs.

But I digress.

Mr. Fabulous had an afternoon planned with his kids. So he couldn't help me pick up the couch I'd put my dibs on. And I'd told Laura I'd be there between 3 and 4 pm.

So I switched up vehicles with my son, who was at his dad's.

Sounds complicated. Maybe we'll get into that later.

In any case, my son Connor has a big truck, and I had a couch to procure. So I dropped my car off, and I took my son's truck.

Then, I drove home, got my other son out of bed (it was well after 1 pm at this point. Jeez.), and he and I drove to Laura and Hugh's house.

This bad boy is HEAVY. Because much to my surprise, it's not only a couch; it's a bed, too!

Logan and I dragged it into the garage after I took this picture.

It was a great score, on so many levels.

Just like this day became, it was more than I bargained for. I found a fabulous couch that's also a bed, and I got it for the price of 28 miles. That's the round-trip journey from my house to the home of Laura and Hugh.

They were glad to get rid of it. Hugh was completely cool when I told him it was going to be given to someone who really needed it.

And tonight, I got a call from Lois.

She needs a couch.

Lois and I work together. She's moving soon, and the one piece to her puzzle is a couch.

She read yesterday's blog, and thought she might want the couch we found yesterday, until I told her about what we found today.

She's most likely going to take this couch/bed item on Tuesday.

She really needs it. And I'll still have a couch to spare.

All for the cost of 78 miles and a few dibs.


  1. Good luck with this awesome project, Mary. I love that you're getting a good workout, too, by moving lots of heavy furniture!

  2. I have Material World! It is a phenomenal book, the owner of the toy store showed it to me and I picked up a copy, I'll bring it down next time I see you. I look at it all the time and I always suggest it to customers, which might be counter intuitive as they look at the book, then look at the pile of stuff they're about to buy, but whatever. It's a very eye-opening book.

  3. Hmm, would I take a kid that sleeps until 1 PM, or one that gets up at 6 AM every day, holidays included. Hmmm.

  4. Great, Margot! Apparently it's a special order kind of a book at this point.

    And Roy, you may take a peek at the jealousy factor. I know I have just a tinge. I wish I could sleep like that....

    I guess you take it when you can - school starts up again tomorrow, so everyone will be up at dawn's crack! Blurgh!