Goodwill? Greatwill, I'd Say

I went on another Goodwill shopping trip. I didn’t buy anything this time, but I did take pictures of some awesome finds, which, if I had had an extra 39 cents in my pocket, I might just have taken home.

They were having a big sale at Goodwill when we were there. Which means that things were so cheap, we were one step away from sanctioned looting.  My mother-in-law bought a shirt and a Chinese pasta scooper and her bill came to $1.79. Shopping at Goodwill is surreal, it’s so cheap.

Don’t tell my husband that I went there or that I am writing this. He hates the fact that I shop at Goodwill and lives in fear that I will run into one of his coworkers, an attorney - not just our attorney, but any attorney - or a teller from our bank, who will think I’m one of those bipolar TV characters who act like they’re homeless but who are really quite well off.

I just had to share with you some of the things I saw on the shelves at Goodwill. My blogger’s self esteem is not high enough for me to whip out my real camera and snap, “I’m a blogger! Shove off!” when someone asks me why I’m taking pictures of a Jesus action figure. So I tried to surreptitiously take photos with my cell phone camera, while a little group of guys watched me and muttered “muy loco.” I don’t care. Now that I’m home, I can say with confidence, “I’m a blogger! Shove off!”

This little beauty claims to be a Personal Learning Machine but it looks a lot like a Roomba. “It’s a new toy every time” it claims in a little bit of a braggy tone, if you ask me. For almost $2, it should suck up dog hair balls while it teaches you your times tables.

A giant glass beaker filled with glass beads. If there is anything less useful and more impractical on this earth, I’ll swallow seven of the glass beads, including that big blue one.

Well, hello little guy! What are you doing so close to the edge there? Back up, little buddy! Move on back toward those dog tag wine charms and the cherub music box, sport!

There were tons of albums like this one at Goodwill. Gospel groups, “Kyu Sakamoto sings Sukiyaki and other Japanese hits,” old musicals I’ve never heard of, and one folk album that was autographed. The albums all smell like my mom’s basement and many of them have obviously been played dozens of times.

Extreme Yoga Naked Barbie finds herself on the shelf with the pots and pans and the Containers Not for Sale. The urge to reorganize the shelves at Goodwill is almost uncontrollable.

And here’s home base for Naked Barbies, a basket that they must share with Matchbox cars and Transformers. For Barbie, being sent to Goodwill must be like going off to Europe with your girlfriends but then getting kidnapped and turned into a sex slave chained naked to a pipe.

This is my favorite section of the Goodwill store, despite the mixed emotions I swim in every time I approach a book shelf. Will I find anything good? Will I find something that makes me doubt the core intelligence of humankind and question the wisdom of the publishing business? Will I someday find a book I’ve written on one of these book shelves? Will I buy it just so no one else sees it there?

Goodwill is the largest source of dyed-to-match bridesmaids’ shoes in the free world. Needless to say, there are no disposable footies to try on these shoes. You try them on at your own risk, and you buy the shoes and all the foot fungus that comes with it.

Action Figure Jesus with pose-able limbs was with the stuffed animals and nowhere near the naked Barbie bin, I’m happy to report.

Figurine of a boy holding an orange traffic cone with a bandage on his thumb. This might be even less useful than the giant beaker of glass beads. I’ll start swallowing now.

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