Not long ago, I had a slightly humiliating experience buying a huge lot of vintage Barbie dolls. While the transaction was awkward for me, I got over it pretty quickly after I sold this awesome find on eBay.
On this particular Saturday morning, I pulled up to a garage sale where the entire family was up early and participating. Mom, dad and three daughters...all were in the driveway chatting it up loudly, eating their morning bagels and drinking coffee. I don't know about you, but I hate these three-ring family circus type yard sales. Everyone is being very loud and carrying on... it always makes me feel like I am interrupting an early morning family reunion!
But despite all the distractions going in the driveway, I quickly spotted a nice big lot of vintage Barbie clothes and dolls. The dolls and clothes were all separated into smaller lots of three outfits per bag for three dollars each. The dolls were marked at only five dollars a piece. They even made up a sign outlining the price of each baggie. At the bottom the sign read, "$35 for all". I was able to interrupt the chatter between mom and her daughters long enough to ask about the age of the dolls. The mom told me they were her Barbies and were from the early Seventies. That was good enough for me...a sale was imminent! The daughter's all gave me a strange look, wondering why some middle aged guy would want Barbie dolls? Throwing out my usual diversionary line, I volunteered that my wife collected Barbies. The daughter's all nodded in agreement, their evaluation of me seemingly changing from "weirdo" to "nice-guy husband" in just a matter of seconds!
Now that I had mom and daughter's approval, I asked if she would take $25 for the whole lot? Amazingly, she said yes and I quickly scooped up the clothes and dolls. But I had to suffer one more indignity before retreating to my truck. Out of the garage came "Driveway Dad". If you go to enough garage sales you've seen this guy. Usually sporting "bed hair" because his wife woke him up way too early, Driveway Dad buzzes around the garage sale on a caffeine high, cracking lame jokes like Shecky Green and just generally getting in everyone's way. This particular Driveway Dad spotted me with the Barbie dolls and started chuckling. Then he had to take his shot, "Oh, I see you bought some dolls for yourself!" Playing along, I shot back, " Sure, why can't guys collect Barbie dolls, right? " I gave "Driveway Dad" a wink and headed back to my truck knowing that with the help of eBay, I was going to have the last laugh!
Once I arrived back at the "MoneyintheGarage" studios, I quickly took pictures and posted my vintage Barbie doll collection on eBay. Not wanting to mess around with smaller lot sales, a dress here, a doll there, I sold everything in one big lot. Would the strange looks and dumb wisecracks at my expense be worth it? Well, there were 270 reasons that it was definitely worth it! Yep....the Barbie dolls and clothes lot sold for a big, fat $270 dollars!
So don't let the driveway dads and yard sale-family parties distract you. While they're eating bagels and making dumb wisecracks, you're making money and having the last laugh...and that's no joke!
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