Friday, June 1, 2018

Today's interesting Thrifting adventure.

 I went to the independent thrift store today to look around and it paid off. I went to look at the hats today to see if there was anything new. I was in luck there was some new hats. In today's assortment of hats they had 2 Hummer unstructured hats. One was green and the later was black. You don't run across Hummer merchandise too often. So for $0.95 I couldn't pass up the black hat for my car company hat collection. I collect hats from different car companies. So I was lacking a Hummer hat for a long time. You see when GM discontinued Hummer they never put any of the official licensed Hummer merchandise on clearance unlike what they did for Saturn. Years ago I wanted to buy a Hummer Trucker hat, It was $20. This was during GM's restructuring when they received the government bailout. I couldn't pull the trigger on a $20 Trucker hat. I ended up paying $0.95 for the Hummer hat. I couldn't complain.
The Glass that I saw.
  Next I ventured a few feet from the hat rack to look at the glassware. I can't buy anymore glassware from thrift stores. We currently have no need for more glassware. I love seeing beer glasses with company logos on them at thrift stores. You tend to see a lot of different beer branded glassware. I guess people get them for free and donate them. Most of the glassware like that almost always look brand new. I did see an old Terry Labonte Slim Jim Beer mug. However it was $3.95. Too much for my price point.
  I then spotted a Marlboro Adventure Team duffel bag for $4.95. I picked it up and inspected it for a second. I didn't bother to open it up. It was too small for my taste. I wonder how many packs of cigarettes somebody had to smoke in order to send away for that?
  I then ventured off to look at the CD selection to see if they had anything good. I've had decent luck when it comes to finding good CD's here. In the past I've found a ton of film score CD's. In fact the other day I stopped by this thrift store for a quick second and found a Jan Lewan CD. You may have heard of Jan Lewan because they made a movie about his Ponzi Scheme called The Polka King starring Jack Black. You may not know this but Jan Lewan lived here in Hazleton, PA. He no longer lives here in PA. In fact the CD I bought titled Jan Lewan and His Orchestra was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Polka Album in 1995. However Jan Lewan lost out to Walter Ostanek Band that year.
  So today I hit big on CD's again. Today I spotted a 2 disc deluxe edition that I have been on the lookout for. It was Beyonce B-Day 2 disc Deluxe edition. Not bad for $0.50. I looked forever for that at the local record store for that deluxe edition for years and I only ever seen the single disc version. So I checked the 2 discs for scratches and didn't see any. I checked the CD's again and spotted Ashley Tisdale's debut album Headstrong. As usual I checked the disc for any scratches. I was in luck, there wasn't any scratches. However I did have to wipe them down with eyeglass cleaner spray.
  So I did good today, I only paid $2 for all three things. Not too shabby in my opinion.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

My Final Toys R Us Purchase.

  Today was a bittersweet day for me. I made my last Toys R Us purchase. I was pondering what kind of toy that purchase would end up being. It was a toss up between a WWE figure, Hot Wheels car or some type of action figure. Well for starters Toys R Us barely had any Hot Wheels cars for that matter. They had a handful but they were all of the same car. Nothing worth getting. They didn't have any Monster Jam 1:64's or new basic Matchbox cars with the exception of the few Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom cars. So buying a diecast was out of the question.
  Now the WWE figure selection was awful. There were a few sporadic figures from 2017's Elite 41 wave. I have all of the flashback figures from that set, so there wasn't a reason to buy any figures. If you wanted a WWE fashion doll, TRU has tons of them. They can't give those away no matter how much they are on clearance for.
  I've been pondering what will happen with all of those unsold WWE Fashion Dolls once Toys R Us goes out of business. Will they end up at Ollies or Five Below, or Big Lots? Who knows for sure. However the WWE Fashion Doll line was a complete failure that really warmed the shelves like crazy. I think Toys R Us overestimated this line thinking it would be a success. It's a huge flop.
  Anyway since it wasn't a Hot Wheels car or WWE figure, I turned my attention to another action figure line, Once Upon a Time. I love ABC's Once Upon a Time. I'm a bit upset that it ended after 7 seasons. It ran it's course. So I decided that I would buy an Emma Swan action figure. Normally this figure is $25. However I was in luck and It was 50% off. So I thought it would be a perfect closure to an end of an era, Once Upon a Time gets cancelled and Toys R Us goes out of business. It was the last purchase I'll ever make at Toys R Us. Thanks for the memories Toys R Us. You will be missed.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

My Life has 100% Improved Since I bought that Snap-On Jacket

  Ever since I bought that Snap-On jacket at The Salvation Army, I feel like my life has improved 100% How do I know this for a fact. Well for starters I've been on a lucky streak as of yesterday. I hit the jackpot twice. If you don't already know this by now, I am a Hot Wheels collector. I have hundreds of cars MOC and loose. You're probably wondering where I am headed with this and I'll explain it to you.
  Yesterday my mom sent me into Boscov's to pay her charge card bill. So I happened to check the toy dept just for the heck of it. So it turns out that they just recently restocked Hot Wheels cars. Sadly they weren't 2018 models but they were from last year. So I figured it wouldn't hurt to look through the pegs for a Super Treasure Hunt car. So after browsing the pegs for a couple of minutes a few times over just to be sure there wasn't a treasure hunt car there, I saw something that wasn't like the others. I spotted a 69 Chevelle SS 396.
  I didn't think much of this car at first as I passed over the car a few times that I browsed the pegs. It wasn't until I realized that there was only one of this car on the pegs. Upon this realization that it was a Super Treasure Hunt car, I immediately went to a register to purchase my 19th Super Treasure Hunt car!
  So later on that day I went to the dinner theater to see The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. At intermission time, they have a 50/50 drawing. Guess what happend? I won the 50/50 raffle! I won $29. So I guess you can call my Snap-on jacket lucky. I'm on an upswing. 

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Testing My Promise at the Thrift Store

  I declared yesterday that I am retiring from thrift store shopping. I made a bet with my mom that I won't be buying stuff from thrift stores for a long time after I found the Snap-on Tools jacket. So today I decided to test out my promise that I wouldn't buy anything at a thrift store. Now I didn't venture to The Salvation Army, I went to an independent one. The same one where I've been finding all of those soundtracks.
  Every Tuesday this particular thrift store has everything in the store 25% off with one color 50% off. Today's 50% off color was green tagged. So I totally forgot that it was 25% off today. Well I did test my promise and I held up to it. I did see some real unusual stuff at this thrift store today. I saw 2 cherub table lamps that were $20 each. They reminded me of one that my great aunt had. For $20, that was the last thing I would want to ever buy at a thrift store.
  I then spotted a broken trophy that was missing the top and the name plate. Who even donates a broken trophy to a thrift store? It was the first time I have ever seen a used trophy at a thrift store. I forgot what the price was. I then browsed the clothing racks had a few things in my arms and decided to put them back. My promise can be kept.
  I then looked at the glassware. I like seeing glassware with beer and alcohol brands on them. They did have a few alcohol branded ones. There was an Old Milwaukee goblet and a Miller glass. I did spot 2 Makers Mark martini glasses that were $0.50 that would have been 50% off. I didn't bother buying any. It's ironic that I look for alcohol branded glassware when I don't touch alcohol. The reason I look at them is because we have a bar in our basement.
  So after looking at the glassware I browsed the CD selection. My one weakness the CD selection. I was in luck today, there wasn't anything good to buy today. My wallet is beginning to feel relieved. After browsing the CD's I went on to look at the toys. I spotted some old Jakks-Pacific Titantron Live action figures. I love wrestling figures but these figures were in terrible condition. There wasn't many there but a good majority were missing hands and limbs. They weren't worth buying at all. I did spot a bag of Lincoln Logs for $7something and I put it back on the shelf.
  After browsing the thrift store after making my promise to retire from buying more stuff seemed a bit odd. It seems like I might have relapsed after making the decision to stop buying stuff. I'm not. My decision was to retire from buying things, not browsing. I love to browse thrift stores when they have their sale days. There has been quite a few Family Day's at The Salvation Army where I walked out empty handed. I can resist purchasing things at thrift stores and I will.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Thrift Store Soundtracks.

  I am a huge fan of thrift stores. I love to look at the CD selections they have to offer. However, the one independent thrift store in town has a good selection of soundtrack CD's lately. On the other hand The Salvation Army has been lacking of any good CD's or a decent selection of them for about a good month or so now which sucks.
  Now at the beginning of the year, the last record store in my town closed up abruptly which doesn't leave anywhere in town to buy new CD's except Walmart which sells edited CD's. I'm in a rut since I will probably have to resort to buying CD's on Amazon now or go out of town to buy new music. Thankfully one thrift store has been good to me when it comes to finding CD's.
  I am a huge film score aficionado. My score CD collection overshadows my pop/rock CD collection. I have over 159 hours of film scores in my library. It's insane. Film score aficionado's are an astute type of collector, they prefer physical copies of scores over digital copies. I'm one of them in that demographic. Now onto the thrift store finds.
  As of recently it seems that the independent thrift store has been getting an unusual amount of soundtracks donated to them. The best part about that is that they were mostly film scores which is right up my alley. Now this thrift store charges $0.50 plus tax for a CD. You can't argue with that price. So when I look at the CD's I always check for the dreaded scratches that CD collectors hate. Fortunately I don't buy them if they looked like someone played frisbee with them.
  Now the past few times I've visited this thrift store in the past month or so, I've walked out of there with a bunch of score albums. My most recent purchase was the best one yet in my opinion. About a week or so ago I had to drop off something at my great aunt's house. She lives across the street from this thrift store. So I decided to do a speed run in there. I looked at the hats, and made a beeline to the CD's. I looked through the CD's and I had spotted some score soundtracks. Jackpot. I had bought at least 5 of them, I bought a Hans Zimmer, James Horner, Don Davis, Harry Gregson-Williams, and Carlo Siliotto.
  The one that took the cake was The Punisher score by Carlo Siliotto. Why is this soundtrack so important and unusual? Well for those of you who don't know your soundtrack record labels, it was a La La Land Records release. Why is this unusual? You never expect to find an out of print La La Land Records soundtrack at a thrift store ever. Never in a million years would I ever expect to find a one of their CD's at a thrift store. For $0.50 you can't go wrong with that. Now I didn't know it was a La La Land Records soundtrack until I got into the car and looked at the spine of the CD case and saw their name of my favorite record label there. I almost had a stroke on the spot when I discovered it was one of their soundtracks. The Punisher wasn't one of their limited editions of a few thousand copies to my knowledge.
  Some of my other soundtrack hauls have included, Backdraft, Matchstick Men, and Black Hawk Down all by Hans Zimmer, I also found all 3 Lord of the Rings scores by Howard Shore and Attack of The Clones by John Williams. I hate the Star Wars prequels but I love John Williams. His scores for the prequels were better than the movies.
  Whoever keeps donating these score CD's is my hero. They are the real MVP here. They share the same passion for film music as I do. If it wasn't for me these score CD's would have been sitting at that thrift store for a long time. I gave them a good home on my soundtrack shelf.

My retirement from thrift store shopping

  Well today it finally happened. I finally found the jacket that I have been looking to find in a thrift store for years now. What special kind of jacket is this you ask? The answer is the elusive Snap-On Tools jacket. I see tons of people wearing these jackets where I live. They are kind of like a Carhartt jacket in a way. They are super cool and, you usually have to buy thousands of dollars worth of Snap-on Tools to get this jacket.
  So today I happened to stop by the Salvation Army to look around for anything of interest. I looked at the hat selection which was super barren today. The hat selection is kind of crappy nowadays. I then detoured over to the toy section that happened to have 2 huge bags of toy cars. I looked over the bags of toy cars to see if there was anything in there that was worth buying. Sadly there wasn't any car that I needed out of those 2 bags. Some old lady in a wheelchair asked me to get her down a K'nex Faris Wheel that was on a top shelf. I said I would get if down for her and I did.
A jacket similar to the one I bought
  After I helped the old woman I decided I would look at the jackets just for the heck of it and it paid off. As I sifted through all of the jackets, I spotted a grey jacket with an American flag patch on the left sleeve, I thought to myself that this has to be a Snap-on Tools jacket. I picked up the jacket off the rack and saw that it said Snap-on on it. I froze up upon seeing a Snap-on Tools jacket. I saw the price which was $14.99 green tag. Pink tags were on sale today.
  I didn't want to take any chances on passing up this jacket since I always wanted one. My dad used to buy Snap-on Tools when he had his business, he never got a jacket though. I looked at the size tag of the jacket and it was a Large. Great, it's just my size. Just to be sure, I went to the fitting room and tried it on. The jacket fit like a glove. Great my wish came true. So I decided against buying those 2 bags full of toy cars for the Snap-on jacket. It never occurred to me to look at the price of the 2 bags of cars.
  When I arrived home from the Salvation Army, I told my mom of my final purchase and she didn't believe me since she knows that I will be there next week. As of this jacket find I can finally retire from shopping at thrift stores for the time being. I found the jacket that I've always wanted today. It was a dream come true. In the past I have found several different Snap-on Tools items at thrift stores, a red hoodie with the Snap-on S logo on it and a Snap-on camouflage hat with a tool camouflage pattern on it.
  So as of today I am official retiring from shopping at thrift stores. It's been an exciting run. I've had the wonderful opportunity to buy a plethora of good stuff. From an antique Tonka Jeep to obscure NASCAR hat's, to lots of wonderful CD's. and even a NIN Hat, and even some truck banks. Now it's time to say goodbye to the Salvation Army for the time being. It was a fun run.
  Will this be the last thrift store purchase in my lifetime? Probably not. I'm retiring from buying jackets. It won't stop me from buying CDs though. That's another post.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Now That Mattel has the Jurassic Park License

  If you are following the toy industry or are a fan of Jurassic Park merchandise, you probably heard that Hasbro no longer has the Jurassic Park License. This is good news. Why so? Well for starters Mattel has a superior product compared to Hasbro. Mattel outdoes Hasbro in terms of scale and detail.
  Ever since Jurassic Park III came out and Hasbro made toys from that movie, they were never the same. You see in 1997 when The Lost World Jurassic Park came out the action figures of the humans and the dinosaurs were a lot bigger than their Jurassic Park III counterparts. When the third installment came out, Hasbro shrunk the figures down drastically. Instead of being around 4/1/2 inches they became 3.75 inches. That's a huge difference in scale. It seems that in 2001 and onward that Hasbro tended to get really really lazy when it came to scale unlike when Kenner still made them.
  Now onto Mattel getting the license. This is good news for both action figure collectors of the Humans and Hot Wheels collectors because this has so much potential for great toys. Mattel could make a Jurassic Park Movie Masters line that is in scale with the DC Multiverse line. This means we could get movie accurate versions of the human characters and versions of characters that Kenner bothered to make such as John Hammond.
  As for Hot Wheels this means we could possibly get scale diecasts of some of the iconic vehicles from the Jurassic Park franchise. We could see a Ford Explorer, Jeep Wrangler, Mercedes-Benz ML320's from The Lost World Jurassic Park and some of the InGen hunter vehicles from The Lost World. This is some amazing potential that I would love to see in the Hot Wheels Retro Entertainment line. Jurassic Park would fit right in with that line perfectly.