Preparing for a tag sale can be stressful and should come with a planned approach. There is so much time spent not only planning, preparing, and stressing about an event that will cost you the better part of a weekend, where you need to question it’s worth. After I had my one and only tag sale I decided from there on out I would just put the stuff I no longer wanted at the end of my driveway for people to take for free. And did they ever take the stuff, broken lawnmowers, old mattresses, old 13 inch tube televisions, well basically if it was free and at the end of my driveway someone took it. The first thought that enters your mind in deciding to perform one of these hellish tasks is “Wow, I have way too much crap that I no longer need or use anymore”, or stuff that is just crap and “I should have never purchased it in the first place (the spontaneous buy, maybe even from another tag sale)”.
Preparing your tag sale is important as this is the vision of you people will take away from your yard full of shit as to what type of person you are. In reviewing these items I found things that were just absolute shit that should just be thrown away, items that were borderline so you throw them into a box and put $.50 each on the outside, the stuff that you price low as it was just okay but really you want someone to buy it because it is cheap not necessarily because they need it (they are at every tag sale), and then the stuff that you are proud to display and will haggle with the best of them to get a fair price. Once you have gathered all of your wares and placed them in, most likely a very inconvenient place in your home to continuously trip over and swear at, you begin to prepare for the displaying of your life to the neighbors, friends, family, and strangers. As I was preparing for the tag sale strategic signs went up down the street, at major intersections, the post office, local stores, and of course a huge one right outside of my house. All of this was of course before people used websites and apps to find ways to procure other peoples unwanted items. Then I sat back and just waited for the day when the masses would arrive and scour my unwanted for their treasures.
The day of the tag sale I woke up early to set up. I placed tables outside, blankets, and boxes all in a particular order. Then I proceeded to bring out the items I had stacked in my living room. The valuable and “liked” items would go on the tables, these are the items you are proud to display and the prices are not really negotiable; the blankets would get stuff that was either to heavy to get up onto the tables or was deemed a step down in importance. The boxes as described before were filled with odds and ends that you hope go but if not, you will probably just throw them away anyway might as well try to get $.50 for them if some sucker is willing. Now it was time, as once people see you setting up for a tag sale they start showing up, it doesn’t matter that you put 9am to 3pm, if you are out at 7 am and they see you, they are stopping.
The people that go “tag sailing” can be a wide array of personalities and types, for your education I have categorized them below;
- The Negotiators – These are the people that no matter how cheap an item is they will always try to haggle you down to save a penny sometimes literally. Example – “I would like to buy this item from the $.50 box, would you take $.40 for it?
My response after a dizzying rolling of my eyes, “It is $.50, but but if you need we do offer financing.” This is of course said dripping with sarcasm.
- The Lingerers – I am not sure what these people actually have to look forward to in life as they seem to just spend the entire day digging through the shit that I thought was to shitty to keep. They never buy anything or if they do it is out of the $.50 box. Most of the time they just want to say “hi” and chat a while.
- The drive-by’s – These people will see you are having a tag sale, drive down your street, and when they get to your location they are practically hanging out of their car windows to see if you have anything that looks good. If they see something they like, they will stop, if not then they just keep on driving.
- The I am looking for something particular – These people show up to your tag sale, walk right up to you and ask if you have a particular item they are looking for. If you do then they become the negotiators if you don’t they become the drive by’s.
So, maybe you are wondering how all of this ties into me being single for the first time? Let me tell you. After my wife said she was leaving I was so freaked out about having to approach people that I thought the best way for me to “get out there” (without actually getting out there) was to try online dating. These sites are set up to take the pain away form the whole dating scene. While I have found differently I still chose to give it the ol’ college try for a while, through these pains and often-comical tribulations. I will say that Vermont is not exactly the hotbed of singles activity, having a small population and an interesting one at that makes it that much more difficult to use these sites. Never the less I did signing up for two of them (hoping to broaden my visibility to the outside world), I will not name them as I am sure it isn’t their fault as to why I have had such awful experiences on their sites. It was while I was traversing the bullshit that is online dating that I came to the realization that this was very much like having a tag sale.
The set up for your online dating profile is very much like setting up for a tag sale. In fact there are many ways in which online dating and tag sales run parallel to each other. When I was reviewing the sites I chose to use I was asked to fill out several questionnaires, upload pictures so I can be judged immediately, and write up a little something about myself. This was just the beginning of the stress of this whole idea. I mean what was I going to write about myself “single after a 20 year relationship, if she happens to say she wants to come back I am going to push whoever I am seeing at the time aside to work things out,” or “Looking for damaged goods in hopes there’s a gem inside? Well this may be your chance!!” I didn’t feel like that was the appropriate thing to write. Did I want to play the overly confident guy by selling my “12 inch cock and huge paychecks” to the public with a stupid photo of me flexing in the mirror with a spray on tan? Or did I want to go with the approach of “Poetry loving, acoustic guitar playing, romantic looking for someone to talk the night away before we make love on a bed of hand plucked rose petals. Then we can spend the night cuddling and speaking of rainbows.” I chose none of those options. Instead I tried to look at myself really and see what I wanted to put out there, I categorized them just like my tag sale.
The absolute shit items that should just be thrown away – This category was the stuff that maybe I didn’t want to share with others. Maybe something that should only be found out after years of dating. Hopefully you will see why should not advertise these things. The items that made this list are below –
- Self-conscious and will never make the first move because I just assume you don’t want to do anything like that with me. Examples include – sex, making out, walking hand in hand, and well, meeting me.
- I have an odd amount of freckles on my back or moles or what ever they are. I think they are a map actually to some long lost treasure but I have yet to figure out the clues really taking into question my ability to become a Goonie as I have always wanted.
- I have always wanted to be a Goonie or Indiana Jones. Even at my “advanced age” this has not gone away. I will leave you in a heartbeat if I can go and find a treasure or lost relic. This will most likely lead to my death so don’t get overly attached.
- I WILL NOT shit in a public restroom. This means that no matter how far we are from home, if I have to go, we are going home. I do not want to be the 78th person to be sitting on some toilet that some teenager is paid $4.50 per hour to keep sanitary.
My $.50 box – These are the things about me that are just there, I could take them or leave them. If I can get someone to take some of them then sweet but I could throw them away and not feel any loss whatsoever.
- I am picky, now I am not like elitist picky. Like I don’t need to drive a BMW or have the best stuff BUT the stuff I do buy has to be just what I want it to be. I won’t settle for anything less than something I am sure about. This also comes into play with people as well. If I don’t like someone, I just don’t want to be around them. There are those I can tolerate and I will try to tolerate most but there are some that I just don’t want to be anywhere near. Like the 35 year old that still thinks he is in a frat with a backwards visor on, or a woman who has ever cried over a broken nail that isn’t broken down to the cuticle and bleeding all over the place (that I get and would cry the same).
- I will slowly shave off my beard throughout the course of the day to see if you notice. If you don’t I will make fun of you……..for a long time!
- I am intolerant, not to any race, creed, sexual orientation, or religious beliefs, but to dairy, gluten, coffee, corn, etc. This is a medically diagnosed thing and not some fad I am doing, I just cannot have it. This will make anywhere we go to eat interesting. Most of the time I am ordering food like “Sally” from When Harry met Sally. I will have this but it cannot have that, I would like this on the side and please no cheese. I do understand the absurdity of it all and will often make fun of it, but it is how I have to live.
- Speaking of, I like romantic comedies. If you are looking for some tough guy that likes guns and building or breaking things, you will not find that here so swipe left. I just like them, that is all. Not all of them, but I do like The Notebook and When Harry met Sally. I will watch them on my own, not joking.
My Blanket items – These are the items that I like about myself but maybe they shouldn’t be up on the table, they should be items that people see displayed, some are heavy, some are just not what I would consider the most valuable but are important to me.
- I like to be spontaneous. This may come in a variety of forms such as one day I decided I wanted to get out of the house and go for a car ride, 7 hours later I was at Lake Ontario in NY to spend 30 minutes taking photos and eating my dinner to drive home. I also like to out of the blue stand up on my chair in the living room and just belly flop on to the floor, or provide you with an impromptu wet willy, just to let you know I am there and thinking of you.
- I will say what I mean. There is no need to read into anything I am thinking. If I haven’t said it, I am not thinking it. I do not like drama and will go out of my way to avoid creating it. Life will present enough drama in our lives to go out of your way to invite more is just ludicrous in my mind.
- I use an e-cigarette. Why is this something I am proud of, well, it is because I was able to not smoke cigarettes anymore. One day I may quit or maybe I will never quit. It is who I am and I will make that decision. I don’t put it in people’s faces if they don’t like it but I will have one around. I don’t smoke crack, I have reduced my Meth intake significantly (joke), I don’t drink often, and I work out regularly. If my one vice is an e-cigarette then let me have it, please.
- I may or may not be good looking it depends on how sexy you find “Gollum”? I have often been compared to the main character from “Powder” I think it is mostly in the baldness and maybe my lack of tanning, oh and the super natural powers those are pretty cool.
My table items – These are the items I will always display on the table and are non-negotiable. This is who I am, try to change it and I will be making changes to our relationship.
- My sense of humor is well all encompassing. I think it is okay to find something funny about every situation and that there should be no limits. This is how some people deal with things by being able to laugh. Of course I don’t want to offend anyone but if I offend you we probably weren’t going to work out anyway so shut up and move on. I once had to contain my hysterical laughter at my ex-wife’s grandmother’s funeral when something funny about the ceremony popped into my head. I almost had to leave. I also find things funny in my own personal tragedies too and will make fun of them.
- I am loyal, not to a fault, but if you can hang with me and make it through he tests of compatibility then we will be friends for life and I will defend you at all costs.
- I am honest. This may be to a fault. If you are feeling self-conscious about how you look in a dress and don’t really want to know if you look fat in it, don’t ask me. My theory is if you didn’t want to know the honest answer you wouldn’t have asked the question. I will not berate you in my answer but I will politely suggest trying something else.
- I love my kids. If you say anything to or about my kids we are not going to be on good terms. I know their faults and I love them for them. My kids are great. Do they get in trouble, sure do, do they get spoken to when they do, absolutely. At the end of each day though they know I love them with all of my being.
These are my tag sale items. This is what is either hidden or displayed in one manner or another. As you may be thinking, “who the could live with this guy?” Now you see why I am scared to be out there. It takes a very particular person to be able to not only be around me but for me to want to be around as well. I am okay with this. I know what I am looking for and if I die alone looking for that I get it. I had it once, here is to hoping it happens again.
The people you encounter in online dating also compare to the people at the tag sales. I have had quite the journey experiencing them, or not experiencing them. I will break them down quickly.
- The Negotiators – These are the people that may like an aspect of what they see but quickly in conversation try to see what they can get you for. By that I mean they may be looking to see if you can mold you into their lives by negotiating some of your traits away. They are essentially trying to get you on the cheap and then make you into what they were actually looking for. An example might be “I really like that you are into poetry, but could you convert to Judaism for me?”
- The Lingerers – I would get these notifications that someone had viewed my profile. Then again and again. They just kept looking at me as if they were trying to figure out if it was worth reaching out. I have had several women look at my profile 5 to 6 times, now maybe they are thinking “is this guy serious?” That may be but don’t look at my profile that many times and then try to say “Hi” to me that means you sent out 47 messages to others and no one responded so lets try this pathetic sack over here.
- The drive-by’s – This category is exactly like the lingerers but they never say anything. They scroll through the photos to see if something catches their eye then they move on (I will not lie, I am guilty of this one). I can understand this one though there needs to be an attraction physically. All the same though, while I joke, I do not look like a sci-fi character, maybe once in a while just stop and see if I may have something you would like. I am rarely in photographs so I don’t have many to choose from. Mostly just my old nude modeling days that I have suggestively cropped but I have a great heart so read the damn profile.
- The I am looking for something particular – I think I have the most respect for this category. They know what they want. If that is not me then fine. Now if you will only date guys who are six feet tall and I am just shy of that, then that is ridiculous, I will wear heals. I have tattoos, many of them; maybe they aren’t into tattoos, and that’s cool. They aren’t going anywhere (they are kind of permanent) so I understand that. Not into bald dudes, your loss, we are awesome, we know how to shine (see what I did there?). If you are not some overly critical person but just know what you want I understand, I have an idea of what I am looking for but I am also open to possibilities (such as, has the ability to breathe and walk at the same time, or can put a complete sentence together).
If anyone has ever tried this dating website and I have messaged you, I am sorry. I have this amazing knack for getting people to delete their accounts simply by saying “Hello” to online. This is an interesting hit to the ego. While I don’t know these women at all, they seem have found offense to the idea that I would even greet them as a reason to give up on dating all together. I have started to get teardrop tattoos on my dick for each woman I have gotten to delete her account and just live life as a spinster (a tactic I have taken up from all of the hardcore gangsters in Vermont and from the bomber planes in WWII). Anything they can do to avoid this guy messaging them again. Some have popped back up later so I quickly message them again, this time something crazy like a medical condition I would like them to help me with. This brings me great personal joy as I get people to delete their accounts multiple times. Who knew that me typing a two-letter word could bring such personal agony to another that they would avoid the internet completely. See I told you earlier, I do have super human powers!
I want to end this by going over a particularly interesting night I had with online dating. I was having a rather difficult time with the whole idea that I was on a website and I felt pathetic about the whole thing. I was going back and forth with deleting my profile and just relaxing with the stuff for a while. One night I was sitting there and my phone notified me that I got a message. I opened my message and it was a woman and the message read “You’re hot!!!”, with a few emojis after it. This was shocking to me as I have never been mistaken for “Hot” but who knows, as I said, I am a bit lacking on the self confidence front. So I look up the woman sending it to me and it was a rather large woman (I do not have a problem with large women at all. They can be very sexy. This one though…) so I responded “Thanks” and left it at that. She comes right back with, and I am not exaggerating “I love you”. Now this was a bit quick for me (I know, I know I am too conservative I get it). So I didn’t respond to that one. Then another one pops through “I could make you happy” and while I am sure she could certainly try that she just struck me as someone who would one day tie me to a bed and bash my ankles with a sledgehammer. So I politely responded, thanks and I wish you the best, hoping she would get the point. Well that didn’t happen she messaged me 5 more times about how in love she was with me and how she would be so good to me. I felt bad; I really did, finally though I just told her that while I am sure she is a great person I just wasn’t interested. I, again, did feel bad; I mean she was in love with me just from my photo and shitty write up. I am not on this thing to break anyone’s heart, but realistically the mental aspects that go into falling in love with an online profile are not ones that I feel I could cure, so I will move on. No more than 2 minutes after she stopped messaging me did another message come through, this time it was from a mid-twenties woman, the typical gorgeous blond with big boobs, etc. This woman wanted me to do some webcam sex with her. All I had to do was go onto this private website and pay $2 to have webcam sex with her, what a bargain!! Really though $2 for webcam sex, do people really do that? I am now laughing and shaking my head. Is this really how this shit happens? From “I am in love with you” to let’s fuck on our computers? This was my first month of being on one of these sites and this is my experience so far? Anyway, after I spent the $2 and did the webcam sex thing I deleted my account (that may be a joke but it may not be as well. Enjoy!!)