They’re Not ALL Morlocks


Last Saturday, Kate and I went to look at a “Huge Star Wars Collection” (don’t worry, it was Prequels and Clone Wars not vintage. Also it wasn’t huge). The craigslister had described the lot as being in “perfect” condition even though the photos suggested that it was being kept in garbage bags and was unceremoniously dumped on the floor to display it for the photos. The quality of the craigslist post, as frequently happens, did not reflect the kind of person that was responsible for listing it. I was expecting someone… weird, you know?

Here at HtF I (Dan) dish out a lot of grief and ridicule to people that post on craigslist (and sell at Flea Markets) but the reality is that the majority of the people that we do meet in person are actually nice, interesting people (like Kate) not weirdos (unlike me). Most of them are long time collectors or someone who knew a longtime collector looking to move on from collecting or just cashing out a little of the value for a short term cash influx (and we’ve all been there, right?).

In fact, many of the people that we have done deals with have become friends. And if we don’t become friends, we at least stay in touch with our individual collecting wants. We have a guy who collects board games, so we’re always on the lookout for something we might be able to trade to him. We’ve got a vintage Star Wars guy to whom we know we can funnel all of our vintage stuff that just isn’t worth reselling and isn’t a Boba Fett. And recently, we managed to make an acquaintance with an insider at a nearby Toys ‘R’ Us and you (*I*) just can’t put a value on that.

In cases like Saturday’s “Huge Star Wars Collection” where we aren’t able to make a deal we can at least enjoy some conversation about collecting. Unfortunately, yeah, these toys belonged to his kids and, hold onto your pants, those kids PLAYED with them. All the telltale signs of heavy play were jumping out at me and made me reconsider any kind of purchase: missing weapons, broken cockpits, switched figure heads, surface marks and scratching… all collector or resale value was just PLAYED out of these things. The owner was the kind of person who could intelligently understand my reasons for not wanting to make the purchase but stand his ground on his asking price (he had started at $350, but came down to $275. I valued the whole lot at a conservative retail number of $385. An offer of $150 was pushing it as far as I was concerned.  Especially with the amount of work I would have had to do to clean and match parts).

I make fun of craigslisters A LOT. It’s easy. It’s fun. It’s entertaining. There are so many of them that don’t even TRY to hide how lazy and illiterate they are when they put their items up for sale. It boggles my mind that they have the knowledge to even POST to craigslist ad. How can they be so techno-savvy as to be able to get online and create their listing that they waste that time, effort and technology trying to sell 25 VHS tapes for $99?

There’s no telling who you’ll meet when you respond to a posting on craigslist. Just cross your fingers and hope that you have the same kind of good luck that we have had meeting people who share our interests for toys and collectibles and don’t try to steal your kidneys or sell you their collection of Chicken Soup For the Soul books.

One Response

  1. Love it.

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