•             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


    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.


    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.


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


    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.


    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 – 21st August 2011

Gromet Mug:  75p

Gromet MugTed has done it again. An absolute bargain. A stunning purchase which demonstrates Ted’s shrewd business guile.

This mug was specially commissioned by a company called PG Tips to manufacture and supply mugs which represented a canine character created by a man called Nick Park of Aardman Animations.

This unused purchase, which was in its original box, will appear in a Sotheby’s auction at a future date, the actual year being finely judged so as to maximise the potential gain.

Two Enid Blyton Books:  60p

Enid Blyton BooksThese were from two different sellers. The one on the left (printed in 1941) was 50p, and the other one (probably post-decimal coinage and in poor condition but intact) was just 10p.

These ever-popular books are becoming harder and harder to find, and these too will, at some time in the future, line Ted’s pockets via Sotheby’s.

Five Books by Dick King-Smith:  £2.50

Dick King-Smith BooksVery rarely does one see books by the author of The Sheep-Pig (which was made into the film called Babe).

Ted was strolling through the stands with his wife when she said, “Hey, don’t you like Dick King-Smith?”

Ted turned and grabbed the book. Later on, he went back because he realised that if there was one book, there might be more. Indeed, he looked through a box and found another one.

Later on still, as Ted was passing the same stall, the seller said, “You bought the Dick King-Smith books, didn’t you? Well, here’s three more. They’ve never been read.”

And they hadn’t; they were brand new.

Tub of Micro K’Nex:  £5

Tub of Micro K'NexVery rarely does one find Micro K’Nex at car boot sales (or charity shops, come to that).

“How much for this?” asked Ted.

“Five pounds,” said the lady.

“How about £4,” Ted said.


It was then that a young boy appeared. “Is the money for him?” asked Ted.

“Yes, he’s selling his toys.”

“It that case,” said Ted, “I’ll give you a fiver for it,” and he handed a five-pound note to the boy.

There wasn’t an enormous amount in the box but it was certainly worth buying (Ted used some Micro K’Nex when building his K’Nex fruit machine).


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