•             Welcome

    This is the personal site of Ted the serendipitist, who has interpreted the Wikipedia definition of 'Hunter-Gatherer' (see that page) as meaning someone who visits junk shops, charity shops, antique shops and hebdomadal matutinal car boot sales in order to acquire low-value objects, which no-one in their right minds would want, at low cost (well, apart from antique shops, that is).

    Deluded Ted believes that at some time in the future, some of his acquisitions will be highly desirable and worth a small fortune.

  •       Car Boot Sales

    TYPES OF SELLERS

    There are two types of sellers at car boot sales, viz traders and ordinary people. Ted tends to avoid traders owing to the high chance of inadvertently purchasing inferior goods at high prices. However, Ted did recently manage to acquire a large number of pairs of everlasting socks at only 50p per pair.

    THE LANGUAGE

    Buyers need to understand traders' language; on asked how much the French carriage clock is, the response might be "toonarf." This would be interpreted as £250. There is no first aid on site for buyers who faint.

    WHAT ON EARTH IS THAT?

    Ted has discovered that, 99% of the time, a strange-looking object is either a massager, a fitness device or a CD rack.

    WIVES

    When a husband and wife team are selling their unwanted items at a car boot stall, it is an interesting fact that, whatever position the husband holds at work, be it dogsbody, manager or chief executive, it is the wife who wears the trousers. If someone asks the wife how much the pretty mug is, she'll say, for example, "50p." However, if the husband were asked, he would turn to his wife and say, "Er... how much for this, dear?" - even if it belongs to him.

    At other times the wife can be heard saying, "No, not there - put it on the ground here...", "You need to turn those round", "You can empty this box now..." or "You can pour me a cup of tea now - you did pack the flask as I asked, didn't you?"

    The simple fact is that women are more suited to this activity than the average man is, and so they naturally take control.

    HAGGLING

    In the early days, Ted's wife would suddenly say, "Ooh, look! They've GOT one!!!" This somewhat weakened Ted's position when he started to haggle. A more appropriate method for achieving a minimal sale price is to pick up the piece unenthusiastically and give a look of horror on hearing the price.

    Some sellers dither when asked the price of an item. At the first sign of this, the buyer should offer a very low price; there is a high chance that it will be accepted, especially if a wife is not in sight.

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Car Boot Sale – 27th June 2010


(The format of this post and all future ones has changed)

Hot and sunny; big.

Ted, being very particular about what he buys, found nothing at all today of any interest, except for the following:

Metal Letters:  £2

A basket of new, very useful assorted matt brushed-aluminium letters, each with a stainless steel multi-strand wire with a captive threaded collet (these wires even by themselves have virtually unlimited potential uses), with a preponderance of b, q, w, x, y and z.  The high-quality basket, which is in excellent condition, was included in the price.

Although it may seem that an absence of the letters a, c, g, r, s, t and others, and only two of the letter e, may restrict the scope for their use, Ted will be able to make a sign which reads “quizzify yobby box exequy.”

Avery Labels:  £1

A very useful sealed, unopened, new pack of 250 sheets of Avery computer labels which will be added to Ted’s existing supply of other unopened ones (whose stickiness has probably slightly deteriorated).

Wooden Jigsaw:  50p

An unusual 35-piece wooden Walt Disney jigsaw puzzle, complete with its original box, albeit rather tatty.

Remote-controlled Tarantula:  £5

Brand new, boxed, realistic, remote-controlled tarantula, in perfect working order, which can spin on its eight furry, moving legs, the operator being able to direct the movement to the left, right, forwards or backwards. It was apparently an unwanted present which was given to the seller’s son.

Intended for use by Ted’s wife’s 4½-year-old grandson, it will undergo prolonged and intensive testing by Ted first.

Children’s Annual:  50p

A rare Partridge’s Children’s Annual in well-used condition, the pages having an authentic mustiness.  The date of publication is unknown since the first page is missing.

Mowgli Stories:  50p

‘All the Mowgli Stories’ by Rudyard Kipling, 1943, with full-colour plates and many black-and-white line drawings, again with an authentic musty smell.

Willie’s Battles:  50p

‘Willie’s Battles,’ a charming small hardback book by Mary E. Kendrew, published in 1910, illustrated throughout with line drawings.

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