First things first: I put up some pictures from our last family get-together. Check them out on flickr.

Our neighborhood garage sale took place on Saturday. Oh, how I hate garage sales!

Thankfully, Melissa takes care of the whole thing. I gladly let her keep the money and spend it on herself; all I am called upon to do is help carry stuff out and take care of the kids while she is out there tending shop.

This time, I went out early and strolled the neighborhood looking for golf balls. Evan hit my cache of balls pretty hard so I needed to replenish my stock. As I walked the streets, the same thought kept popping into my head: “This is the worst sort of pig-nasty garbage!”

I disturbed me. I kept wondering: is this representative of what is inside everybody’s house? Are all the nice, well-kept houses just a shiny veneer over a squalid, dust-covered, chipped, particle-board interior? Worse still, is my home the same? Well, of course not; we all only sell stuff that we have thrown out long ago. The fact that Danielle Steele and other related romantic novels sell like hotcakes and my intellectually superior books on aviation history go unsold bugs me though.

One home had an interesting display. The owner has a business: “animal behavior modification”. In other words dog training. But to illustrate her talents, she had two pets sitting in the yard with her. A cat and a one-legged duck. Sitting together. That’s something you don’t see every day. Perhaps she really does have some training talent; I was ready to sign up.

Often the logic escapes me. I overheard the following conversation:

“What you want for this toolbox?”

“Fifty cents.”

“I’ll give you a dime!”

“Nope, sorry. It’s early yet. I may get fifty cents later.”

“Well see, I already got a toolbox. So, that ain’t worth 50 cents to me.”

There I was, kneeling by the golf balls, wondering “Why is this guy haggling over 40 cents? The fact that it’s worth only ten cents to him is entirely irrelevant to its worth to the owner. So what if you’ve already got a toolbox?” That’s when I always feel that hot flash of anger and want to tell those people to get in their rusty pickup and get their sorry butts out of my neighborhood. I can see haggling over the price of a car or a house where thousands of dollars hang in the balance but 40 cents? It makes me despair. There you have one of the many reasons that I don’t own a retail store. To me, a thing has a certain value and another person can choose to pay that value or not. Many people though just get a thrill out of haggling. Ugh!

But, on a more positive note, a few moments inside with no other pressing chores left me an opportunity to finally clean up the computer and put up some pictures from our last family get-together.