4/14/2008 - Goodwill Highland St

i'll come right out and say it - this week was a bust. due to some scheduling hoohah with my dumbass job, i thought i was only going to have one day off so i tried to cram in a trip to a thrift store i'd been meaning to visit in between laundry, moving massive quantities of book inventory around, chauffeuring my wife to and from work, and drinking heavily. needless to say it did not go well. i'll try to keep the job-related bitching to a minimum, seeing as it's mostly irrelevant, suffice to say that if anyone has any hookups at wild oats/fresh market for a simple, part time position hauling organic bananas around i'd love to hear about it. let me know.

some other blog related business before we dig in, though. voting was overwhelmingly in favor of "over," vs. "under" or "other," in re: toilet paper alignment. good to know i'm not the only one who feels strongly enough about the issue to make my voice heard. next question on the table - if you had to bring only ONE of the holy pentumvirate of monster themed breakfast cereals to a desert island with you - being, of course:

boo berry

count chocula

franken berry

and the forgotten duo of fruit brute and yummy mummy, which would you bring?

any thoughts you have on this crucial issue would be greatly appreciated.

moving on.

this trip was a bust for a few different reasons. one being, i've been to this store once before and, unfortunately, on this visit found it lacking two of the crucial things that made it stand out in my mind on my previous visit: pimps and potholes. last time there was, hand to god, the BIGGEST pothole i have EVER seen in my life in the relatively tiny parking lot outside, a massive, car-swallowing crevasse that even the most observant driver could easily crack their radiator on, if they weren't careful, accompanied inside the store by the smoothest, silkiest, head-to-toe decked out pimpinest pimp that ever laid down the hand, just browsing through the racks like he didn't look like a god damned circus freak, and, OF COURSE, i didn't have my fucking camera.

this time? freshly paved parking lot. boring, run of the mill thrift store clientele. in the words of calvin, PTTTHHHBBBPPPTTTHHH!!!!

what it did have, looking on the bright side, were a few really standout pieces of wall accoutrement, ranging from this enormous rather well framed $6 photo of a downtown skyline, to

this even bigger two panel japanese inspired piece for $20 which i coveted wildly and in full view of several strangers...i'm a public coveter, i'm ashamed to admit...to

this rather snazzy martini piece for $3, which, even though (according to the back sticker) it came from tj maxx, was still EXTREMELY appealing. i am, however, still trying to find a suitable frame for the einstein piece i snagged at salvo downtown a few weeks back, and am, therefore, for the moment, out of the wall hanging buying gaming thinging whatever. anyway so yeah they're all still there as far as i know. DEFINITELY go buy them.

this place was really heavy on the knickknacks/old electronics end of things, which i found a little disconcerting for some reason that i can't really put my finger on, considering how weak the rest of the selection was. my near misses with the next couple items inspired me to develop a new feature in this blog, which hopefully i'll be running on a regular basis. it's called


there are, on any given thrifting day, any number of things that i bite my lip at, wander around and reconsider for a while, and then eventually return to the shelf/table/huge garbage can from whence they came. my question to you, readers, in these little interludes, will be, if you were in my shoes, at that particular moment, would you have pulled the capitalist trigger, so to speak? would you have, as they say, rode the snake? would? you? have? bought? it?

first up is some weird ass little thing called "elements," apparently an extremely copyright-conscious grownup version of chutes and ladders, played with shot glasses. it was $4, still untouched in the box, and made from pure, honest glass - no cheap plexi b.s. here. my problem, though, was with the simplicity of it all - all you do, apparently, in the game is roll a set of dice (which you have to provide yourself) and move your glass around the board, drinking when appropriate and assigning drinks to your fellow contestants at the respective times. maybe if i was 19 again and drinking in some sort of regimented fashion following the dictates of a structured activity held any sort of appeal i would have snapped this right up, but am i the only one who thinks that drinking "games" are, by and large, just a weak way of forcing extra socialization and conviviality into an activity which is already social and convivial by nature? are we that nervous around each other, really?

don't get me wrong, i'm still down for a game of asshole whenever and wherever it's appropriate (or even more wonderfully inappropriate), and i try not to begrudge anyone else their preferred methods of having a good time, but nonetheless, my question to you, dear reader, is...WOULD...YOU...HAVE...BOUGHT...IT?

as a tangential post script, if anyone ever sees a copy of the "shot glass chess" set that i'm still kicking myself for passing up at the big lots in galveston several years ago for $10 floating around, PLEASE, PLEASE just get it and i'll pay you back in spades, we can sort out the details later on. talk about regret...

boy, where the hell do i even start tackling this thing? the flexassage, or flex assage as i immediately took to calling it, is a roughly 2 foot long vibrating piece of foam that made me more uncomfortable than climbing the god damned rope in gym class. what else do i have to say about it? it cost $2. it's a secondhand, two foot piece of vibrating foam that comes in its own plastic covering case that says "FLEXASSAGE™" on the outside. i was tempted. i passed, figuring that i probably flex my own assage enough as is. but. the question remains.





that concludes this week's episode of our philo-retail-sophical q & a session. feel free to answer in the comments, i'd actually kind of like to know what you would have done in my place.

so, yeah, but anyway, there were a few funny records

and a fair selection of books - apologies for the blurriness of the photo, that was definitely a surprise to me

unfortunately almost all the books were $2/3+ a piece, so i passed, aside from another piece to add to my increasingly obsessive james bond book collection.

and, honestly, that's about it. it's not that the goodwill on highland is really a BAD store, in the way that the shadow of treasuries on presley blvd was kind of outrageously gross or anything, it just kind of lacked the one weird hook or spark of insanity that sets a truly memorable thrift store aside from a place that you just visit once and forget about, obsessive blog projects notwithstanding. i'll definitely be back, don't doubt that for a second, but i remember leaving and thinking that it was a real shame that goodwill had their weakest store in town right next to the u of m campus where, presumably, college students are still potentially interested in an interesting, vibrant, unique place to buy and exchange weird shit for very little money. maybe the fact that they bothered to resurface the parking lot is a sign that they're interested in changing that, but of course, only time will tell.

574 S Highland St
Memphis, TN 38111
(901) 458-6610

m-sat 9-6
sun 12-6

music: usual loud shouty gospel on a radio behind the counter - is that like a mandate from goodwill corporate headquarters or something?

for my part, i'm sorry that i only made one store this week - i could very well be getting a job that allows me an appropriate amount of time to pursue my insane little interests here before too terribly long, so hopefully the whole thing will be back on track tout suite. i know, the tension is driving me insane too.

talk to you soon

your pal


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