Okay. So I wasn’t actually robbed but it felt like it.
I spent almost 6 hours out in the heat with a piece of my family’s life on display for everyone who happens to stop by to take a look. Do you know how much I made? I made $32.
THIRTY TWO FREAKING DOLLAR!!
What did I sell? 2 strollers, 2 CDs, 1 DVD, a box of toddler girl clothes, 4 pairs of toddler shoes, 1 toy phone, 1 diaper bag, 2 laptop bags, 1 Star Wars bank, and 1 shrug (original price $34). There was also a box of free stuff that got cleared out. In return I got $32, a sunburnt face, an upset child, and so much time wasted. Not worth it.
Now. I don’t mind so much about the money. I figured my low prices (10 and 25 cent toddler items) would move a bunch of stuff quickly. I also figured those who can’t afford buying new can have a variety of clothes for their girls to wear. Many of the people that showed up were nice. Those that didn’t seem so nice I didn’t have to interact much with them besides saying hi and bye. Although things weren’t going as well as I hoped, it wasn’t too bad.
Until she arrived.
As I was helping a lady, I saw a shiny red SUV pull up to my sidewalk. A couple got out to browse my stuff. She was wearing a pretty red skirt with a nice blouse. He was wearing a neatly pressed button-up, slacks and a tie. Yes, a tie.
They looked through the clothes hanging and I witnessed a sort of snobbishness coming from her toward the hubs and my clothes. I was taken back by this. I wondered. Why was she going to yard sales in a low-middle class community with that kind of attitude?
Then I got the answer.
She was skimming through the top layer of clothes in a large box when she came across a beautiful shrug still bearing its $34 price tag. Sure I got it on sale for half the price, but she didn’t know that. The point is, I never wore it. I bought it last year with the intention of finding the perfect outfit to go with it. Except, we needed to cut back on our spending and I didn’t get the chance. I knew we needed the extra money so I tossed it in the box hoping to make a few bucks off of it.
At first I planned to price it at $10, but after the second hour out there $5 was looking more likely. By the time she arrived, I had been out there for over four hours with less than $20 in my pocket. I was feeling low and ready to pack it up after they left.
Then I saw her looking at the shrug. Feeling the soft woven fabric between her fingers. She liked what she saw and felt enough to try it on and do a little turn after asking him his opinion. He approved. I was hopeful as I gave her my best smile.
Something in me knew from the tone of her voice that I wasn’t going to get anywhere near what I hoped for. So when she asked how much, I told her what I thought was the lowest possible price she would agree to. Three dollars.
The instant it left my mouth, I regretted it. How could I let that go for three little dollars? How could I let it go for anything less than ten? I had insulted myself by speaking those two little words. Three dollars. I wish I hadn’t said it. I wish I hadn’t left the shrug in the box in the first place. I wish I could grab it out of her hands and tell her it wasn’t for sale. But I didn’t. And do you know what her response was?
“I’ll give you a dollar.”
A MOTHER FUCKING DOLLAR!!! That’s how much she wanted to pay. I was speechless for a few seconds. I slowly sucked air in through my teeth preparing to tell her no. I wanted to tell her to keep her stupid dollar and leave. I felt so insulted and I just wanted to go inside and close the world out. This woman felt I was so beneath her that I didn’t deserve any more than a dollar. So I don’t know what possessed me to say yes when next she asked, “Yes or no?”. Actually I said, “Fine. Whatever. Just take it.”
I felt defeated. She was the disgusting icing on the icky cake. Not only did she rob me of money, but she stole something else. I was insulted by someone who thought she was better than me and I just let her. I didn’t have the strength to argue. I didn’t have the strength to be mean. I just wanted this day to be over. So I let her take it for a dollar. I should have just told her she could have it.
“Better yet, let me give YOU a dollar. Why would anyone like you have to pay for my junk?”
Yesterday someone stole pieces of my pride and confidence and I realized there was one more thing I wasn’t good at that I needed to add to my list. Bargaining. This was my first and last yard sale. I never want to invite random people to my home to look down on me again. Ever.