Monday, September 7, 2009

How to make a million

Last Sunday I was invited to help neighbour Fleur with a stall at the Camberwell markets. I happened to have a bag full of clothes that I no longer wear so it was all looking good: have a bit of fun with a friend, get rid of some stuff I had in storage and, hopefully, make a bit o cash. Mr Chairman made me some spiffy swing tags and I labelled all my stuff, feeling awfully daring for asking $15 for wool skirts made by some pretty fancy local designers. With the car packed to the roof, a thermos of tea and the stunned appreciation that I had managed to get ready by 5.30am we set off. I always find it exciting driving the empty pre-dawn streets and I was looking forward to the day ahead. The thing was it had been some ten years since I last visited the market and well, things ain't what they used to be...

I remember when the Camberwell markets were the place to go for a uni student who wanted to pick up some cheap interesting clothing. These were the people who would recognise the quality of my stuff! They'd know just what an ASTOUNDING bargain they were getting and could live a happy and stylish life thanks to me. And I'd make enough money to finally buy myself some new clothes. Everybody wins! But the way the day panned out, there wasn't too much happiness and joy for anybody.

You see, the secret to making your fortune at the Camberwell market is to find the crappest item you have in your house - and I'm talking half tube of frosted pink lipstick type crap - and sell it to an Asian housewife for $2. And you better not even think of asking $3 because you will not survive the howls of abuse heaped upon you. That unused set of Sheridan cotton sheets, complete with doona cover - how dare you ask $30! Really, the amount of bitching and moaning that went on, I was happy to sell them for $25 to a nice quiet lady who seemed really pleased to have snaffled a bargain because I never wanted to talk about them ever again. Fleur made an absolute killing with her extensive collection of half finished frosted lipsticks, used false eyelashes and stained pillow cases. And no one even looked at my lovely things except to hassle me into selling them for $1 and shrieking at me when I said no. In all, it was a very very trying day and then the tea in the thermos was tainted by the distinct whiff of licorice left over from stomach settling tisane it had last housed. Grim. Very grim. There was also the little matter of Fleur not being able to put the car in reverse and we were really parked awfully close to a plane tree and if a lovely little man hadn't come to our rescue I think I may well have died at the Camberwell market (though I did worry he would drive off in our car and I'm not sure how I would have explained that to Mr C.)

This woman wants your soul... for 50 cents

Instead of a well deserved nervous breakdown Mr Chairman and I then choofed off to the city for a baby shower (though I never know if the shower is a pre or a post baby thingie - anyway, this one featured a two week old child). One of Mr C's best friends, truly the ugliest man I have ever seen and a good example of why the Jewish people should consider putting an end to inbreeding, somehow this man has snaffled an absolute stunner of a partner and their little girl Gala is one of the prettiest babies I have ever seen thank god. We got fed extremely well at a Korean restaurant down Southbank. One thing I noticed, the largely Jewish crowd were not shy about loading up their plates with goodies - no demure denials here - I felt quite at home . There were lots of short little men, thick East European accents, shoulder shrugging and the odd 'what's not to like?' and 'whatchou gonna do?'

We got home, I had a bath and a cry and decided that ebay is my new best friend.

2 comments:

Sailor Lily said...

oh dear.
though I'm not surprised given I know that there at are at least three women (according to the lovely old Greek ladies) who frequent the very cheap Spotswood op-shop (famous for its white shoe collection) to buy stuff dirt cheap then sell it for a few bucks more at Camberwell market. It makes the ladies snicker but hey figure thye're still selling the stuff in the first place.
bummer.

donnasoowho said...

lady that sounds very similar to the garage sale debacle! No one wanted my nice about 2 year old fully functioning iron for $5!