Treasures at a Garage Sale that Even the Internet Doesn’t Know!

11 05 2009

Rummage Sales. I love them at and hate them all at once.  Usually you go to these things, and everything smells.  Or it’s pointless and over priced for the garbage that it is.  …but, every once and a while you find something totally cool.  This is a tale of the latter.  The elusive cool rummage sale.

So this was a few weekends ago.  …or one weekend ago, I have no idea.  It wasn’t yesterday though, that much I’m sure of. So I wanted to go to this hot rummage sale I was tipped off to by a guy I know.  It’s once a year up by 394 and Penn Ave (Minneapolis)  It was supposed to be big.   Lovely day, super nice out, and there were like about a trillion people there.  Hot dog stands, mini donuts… it was a tripped out rummage circus.  …and there, at the very first place I went to was… an amp.

Ok, so we all know that I’m in a band, right?  …if not, I’m not sure where you’ve been, but you should probably check us out before someone makes a lot of fun of you…  Anyway, so being in a band usually means you’re also a gear nerd to some degree.  …usually the more of a gear nerd you are, the crappier your band actually is.  …which makes sense because I’m not a HUGE gear nerd or anything.  I don’t really know why anything does anything… I just play things, and find out what I like and go with that.  I’m not ever going to get into some lame conversation debating brand names with people.  Gear talk is like Magic the Gathering talk. …Or Harry Potter talk.  Lose-lose situations.  I went to the latest Star Trek movie.  I loved it. So what?  Am I going to talk about the nuances of the new actors performances when portaying our original heros?  No.  Not much. Seriously.  …So, I am not a gearhead nerd guy.

..but anyway, I saw this old amp in the corner of this garage… price? $10.   …So I was all like, ‘Hey, does this thing work?’  …and this grungy hippy lady told me that she thought it did… or at least that dude who left it in her garage said so.  …hippies… Anyway, it was a rhetorical question anyway.  Here’s my gear know-how and advice.  If it’s old, it’s worth more than $10 when it comes to all musical gear, and Star Wars toys that have all the original pieces and are in 9+ condition or better.  …and of course still in the package- regardless of the condition of the package really.  The toy inside would likely be worth at least $10 if it’s old.

(I used to work at this place that sold Star Wars toys- and at that time, I would have been considered an expert in that field. …We sent out cataloges and I convinced the boss to let me write little articles in them.  They were all really funny.  …except for this one, where the boss’s brother who was the “editor” because he was in college or something… changed my whole story around because he found a typo that didn’t make any sense- so he retyped several sentences to make them make more sence, and in doing so, also made me sound as though I wanted to rape a fictional cartoon character.   My revenge would come a few years later when I ditched my post at the Mall of America to go meet William Shanter…)

So The amp was a Jordan.  The model was Trouper J120.  And me typing that into the internet doubles the online articles that mention this amp.  This is the odd part.  Jordan made amps from 1966 until sometime in the 70s, and they were used by some of the top artist of the time.  The Doors, the Mama’s and the Papa’s etc… huge acts.  And then, the two clowns who ran the company went to work for Rickenbacker and disbanded Jordan… Now, here in the future, the things are super rare because of the short amount of time they were on the market.  I’ve talked to every freaking guitar expert I can find, and they all say the same thing.  “Oh yeah, heard of those- never seen one come through.”  …so, at first thought, this might make you think that my $10 amp is worth a small fortune. …and if you’re thinking of buying it from me, then you’d be quite right.  …but if not, it’s actually really hard to tell… there’s no supply- but also no demand.  No one is looking for these, or knows anything about them, so judging a value is though.  BUT it sounds amazing!  So, for $10 it will sit in my place and make me happy for now.

Later that day I also found a Darth Vader mask that changes your voice when you speak into it.(Yes. You read correctly.  It makes you sound like Darth Vader.  …I know, deap breaths. ) You have no idea how many parties I will wear that to this summer.  Like, two or three. Seriously.  …because I wasn’t really to stop getting cheap things, I also went on to craigs list after seeing an organ for sale for $250 and I realized you can get these things for next to nothing. …so I bought an organ for $10 too.   It makes all sorts of annoying sounds, and has the notes labeled for fake musicians like me who need help with the more “technical” aspects of playing instruments.

So, for $27 cash money I got, a vintage amp, a vintage organ, and a Darth Vader mask.  Naturally I went out rummage saling the next weekend as well. …and naturally I found loads of smelly over priced garbage like toddler clothes.  Eh, you win some, and you lose some.

Food for thought: I’m thinking about working brief little reviews of other bands music into my stories about nothing… FYI.

Live long and prosper,




One response

11 05 2009

I’m addicted to garage saling!

I also found an organ last Saturday at an estate sale. I regret not buying it for $5 since it was a mini electric organ, probably from the 50’s, that still worked. They are having a part 2 to the sale in the next couple of weeks, so I’ll have to go back. The best rummage sales are estate sales. Auctions are horrible, but if you can find an estate sale, they usually just want to get rid of everything. Another tip is to look for signs that are in old peoples writing. They usually handwrite and don’t provide much detail besides the address and the time, and are usually on cardboard.

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