Tuesday, January 14, 2014

The $23.50 Leather Coat

Saturday is shopping day.

Basically with two small people who eat as much (or more?) than the big people in my family, I am reduced to shopping at least once a week.

There is a physical limit of how much food I can push around a grocery cart in a huge box store. 

This past Saturday was rainy. Like the kind of rain that soaks you in five minutes flat. 

I had a small list of chores and since the baby jeep is still gone due to a missing part that was unexpectedly delayed due to poor weather, I was driving THE MAN'S TRUCK. (big surprise on the bad weather thing)

First chore on the list was to drop off our used clothing.

We don't have a proper second hand clothing store. We have one that takes your stuff for free and resells it so someone can make a profit. And then we have another one that is churchy, but not in a way you understand.

Like it's called C.O.R.C for Christians Concerned about Something Or Other and very small, dingy, and on the scary side. 

Have I mentioned I hate cramped spaces?

Anyhow, I took five back alley ways to get to this store. Parked the beastly truck, wrestled large bag out of passenger side, threw my hood up against the rain and maneuvered through snow covered wet areas to the front of the store wishing someone had donated a shovel so things were a bit clearer. 

Bad parking is the second lovely feature of this store. 

After donating, I wandered around. This only takes five seconds, made longer from politeness. 

Only one person can physically occupy an aisle due to space constraints, so there is a lot of waiting while someone browses and then you can politely move around them. 

On my way out, there was a leather coat I thought might actually fit me AND I actually liked. I am perpetually surprised when something like that happens. Having nothing against something second hand, I just never find anything clothing wise. It was marked $20 CASH.
I asked nicely if that also meant checks since there was some long mumbo jumbo also written about certificates and all that jazz. 

She gave me a look like I was a dumb ass and said nothing.

I said hey, I think I want that coat, but I don't have any cash. Was hoping not to have to run back out in the rain to a bank and could I write a local check?

She said, no, cash meant cash. 

The other real second hand store that I frequent on a near weekly basis that raises money for the animal shelter takes cash, checks, credit card, or tells me to bring money next time I come. Not that I am comparing.....they just do not take used clothing. Once I mailed them a check as I was going on vacation and I had forgotten checks the last time. It's just that cool of a place. 

So head to second errand, dropping package off at Post Office which also happens to be across the street from a bank.

Banking is not my big thing. We don't have one here. We do have a bank, but honestly it's all electronic and physically located five hours away. This bank did have a cash machine so I ran across the street in the rain to grab some cash, dreading returning to the store. 

It cost me $3.50 in fees to get $20. I should have gotten more, but I was not thinking about tax. I was thinking about a jacket.

Back in the truck I pondered whether or not they charged tax on used clothing. It seemed kinda silly to charge tax on something that was already bought once, but what did I know. 

So I figured that I'd raid the change bag THE MAN keeps in the truck just in case. 

Drove back over to second hand store and starting looking for change bag. Realized belatedly that the change bag was gone, probably due to a recent dinner where we taught our kids how to play poker.

Yes we taught our kids how to play poker for money. It seemed like a life skill at the time and nobody wanted to google the rules for Go Fish. 

Decided to chance it and went back into the store.

Found a spare unoccupied spot where I could drape my large wet winter coat over a rack of clothing and try on  the leather jacket. Nothing is worse than cramping the girls with not enough space. Zipped jacket. Yes, lots of room for girls to move around. Hunted around for a mirror. Found one. Waited for person coming down the stairs to get past mirror so I could check it out. 

Decided it was a good purchase and went up to the counter. Took out $20 bill and waited.

Waited some more while lady discussed what so and so was going to do and blah blah blah. Got hot and grumpy in wet winter coat. Waited more. 

Finally she walked over and rang up the coat.

I was lacking .80 cents. I looked at her with my hairy eye balls and hateful grumpy ass hot self and said, it already cost me $3.50 to get this cash out at the bank. I do not HAVE .80 cents. 

She winced and stood her ground. I took my $20 and started to leave. 

Five shoppers in my proximity started digging through their purses because THAT IS WHERE I LIVE. We are nice all the time for the most part. And helpful. Unless we run a used clothing store and resemble a troll. 

I gave them the hairy eye ball too. This battle was between the owner and myself.


I took my coat and ran like the hounds of hell were after me. 

I think I'll donate my clothing to the second hand store the next town up where I have not been marked as a bad-ass. I did notice later I was wearing my Orange County Chopper t-shirt my Father in Law bought me. It's possible I looked like some biker girl since I also had my hair pulled back which had also gotten damp from rain. Yup that is me. Riding my hog to second hand stores in the rain wearin' my hairy eye balls.

And by the way, the rainbow in my cloud? THE MAN who said, WOW, you got a great deal! A leather coat for $23.50!


  1. Great, great story! I loved it and I hope you enjoy wearing that jacket for years.

    I was also nodding my head at the bit about there being a limit to what you can push round in a trolley. I've been saying that for years and they pretend they can't hear me

  2. LOOOVE this story.....makes me wanna duck for cover, being of the Christian persuasion...which, VERY obviously this op shop is NOT of.....not AT ALL..... & if I'd been running the store, since it's ALL GIVEN FOR FREE, I'd have said take it...& if you'd never turned back up with the money...so WHAT??? It's all donated, for heaven's sake....& for all she knew, you could've been homeless...not that it sounds you looked like it. You should've flashed your tatoo, For good measure:):)

  3. Pfft! That is so funny!! Makes me feel like we sat & had coffee together!!! Geez - a troll indeed. Now where is a photo of you and the girls in that great deal? :)))))))


I LOVE comments. Come on. Leave me one. They make me smile!