Deane and I consider ourselves introverts. We come complete with needing alone time to recharge and think, and we avoid many activities that include crowds. We hike, we don’t go to professional sporting events, and when we travel, we meticulously plan out our itinerary and explore by rented car. We don’t go on booze cruises or stay at all-inclusives. We go on road trips that include seeing giant or tiny roadside attractions. We don’t go to multi-day music festivals. You get the picture. This is my story about when 2 introverts walk into a thrift store.
That said, there is one extroverted activity that we just get the biggest kick out of, and it’s especially gratifying when it happens organically, we don’t mind forcing it, however, if necessary. Talking to strangers about ridiculous things or in ridiculous circumstances just lights us up when we can get a victim to play along.
We went to our local thrift store to pick up a couple of knives, forks, and spoons for work. We try to avoid throwing plastic ones in the garbage every day. We try to do our part in not screwing up the earth any more than we must. But, that’s another post.
We were looking around at the store when we saw It – a very nice sofa, in good shape, a neutral color, and not made with woven fabric! (No woven fabric with 2 couch potato dogs) We looked it over, sat on it, laid on it, and decided, yep, this would be a good addition to our little casita.
Since we arrived by car, we could not take it home at that moment, and it was too close to closing time to get home to get the trailer. We decided that we needed to find an employee who could explain how the whole thing works.
I stood guard while Deane searched for an employee. He was gone for what seemed like an eternity. I wondered what had happened to him. I left my post and moved towards the main aisle to scan the store. Nothing. I stepped a little farther and finally saw him. I gave him the “what’s going on,” sign and the “hurry back over here,” wave. He gave me the “just a minute” finger. Nuts! I must get back to my post! I walk back towards the sofa, Deane is catching up, when it happened. A man close to my age, and his 18-year-old son, were doing the same dance and exorcism we had just done on our couch!
I stepped up to the dad, pointed a finger at him and said, “Clearly there is going to be a fight, I’m pretty sure I can take you.” “but he,” pointing at the son, “Is young, and probably has some muscle on me.”
The kid looks at his dad like, “Holy crap, this woman is crazy!”
Then the magic started.
The dad looks left, looks right, leans over to a shelf and grabs a 3-inch bust of Beethoven. He says, “If you let us have the sofa, I’ll give you this awesome bust and you can put it on your piano.”
I replied, “I don’t want that silly bust, I just donated that. I’ve been trying to get rid of it for years!
At this point, Deane and I wink at each other with a glance that says – “YES! We have a player!” “They can have the sofa, we didn’t even come in here for that.”
Now, the dad pulls out the big guns. He hangs his head, steps in front of the boy, and says in a low tone, “Well, I don’t like bringing this up in front of the boy, but ever since his mother contracted her fatal disease and died on the sofa, we just can’t bring ourselves to sit on it anymore. Whadya say?”
I think to myself – man! This guy is gifted! I laugh and say – “Sure, you can have it.”
The kid still doesn’t seem at all like he understands what’s going on. “Really?” he asked.
The dad was clearly in the mode to continue the game. He didn’t want to show any sign of giving in. He asks, “Do you have a few bucks to help a couple guys out? We both lost our jobs on the way over here, right after the car accident.”
Deane and I roared with delight and said, “Well, that makes 4 of us, my friend. Same thing happened to us just now.”
We started to walk away and go look for our utensils, which was going to be a grand total of $3.00. I remembered that I had a 25% off coupon in my purse, and now I wanted to keep playing. I flashed the coupon at Deane and asked, “Wanna?” Of course he agreed.
We walked back to the father-son duo and I said, “I just might have something in my purse for you.” I dig and I dig, even though the coupon is right there. I flip the purse around, dig some more, and finally hold up the coupon like a heavy weight boxer holding up the championship belt, and hand it to the dad.
He takes it in both of his hands. Then he takes my hand and presses it to his forehead repeating over and over, “Bless you, kind lady, bless you……”
Best trip to the thrift store. Ever.