Discovering new treasure troves, entire locations full of forgotten pop culture gems, is getting more and more difficult as time marches on. I blame a combination of things, but the biggest culprit has been and still is eBay. People look to that site and see that old, collectible items can occasionally fetch top dollars, so obviously everything that's been buried in their basement these last two decades must be worth a fortune. This belief is often incorrect; their trash is only worth what someone is willing to pay for it, and usually it's a low, low number. That doesn't stop yard-sales and "antique" shops from marking up their items ten-fold, asking big bucks for worn-and-torn goods, niche items and actual garbage.
Somehow, in some miraculous way, I was able to stumble upon a second-hand shop that wasn't pricing their wares too high. An entire shop full of decades-old products, reasonably priced, and it just happened to be hiding out ten minutes down the road from my house. It was Christmas come about a month too early, and I wasn't complaining.
I'd actually driven past JC's Things plenty of times, but always assumed that it dealt solely with used furniture. Yesterday was no exception. I was on my way to an entirely different thrift shop, a couple towns over, when I was struck with the sudden urge to pull into JC's parking lot. Not sure why, couldn't explain it to you. There was just something magnetic drawing me in, and I am awfully glad that I didn't attempt to resist. I knew from the moment that I stepped inside that there was something special about this place.
Unlike most of my favorite thrift shops, there didn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to the layout; not even a semblance of organized chaos. So, yes, I was immediately in love. There were shelves and shelves of miscellaneous items, old new-stock and rusty tools, bins of vinyl albums, vintage holiday decorations. My heart skipped a beat at the sight of stacks of VHS and boxed Intellivision games.
Yes, you heard correct, they still have complete, boxed Intellivision titles.
It only took a few minutes for me to realize that this was somewhere special, somewhere I could spend hours upon hours searching through boxes of stuff. A place to uncover forgotten treasures, pop cultural relics that needed to be rescued and loved. I'm not embarrassed to admit that I was giddy at the prospect of wasting my Saturday afternoon getting my hands dirty in search of some real, old-school trash.
You'll be happy to hear that I did not walk away empty-handed, but dismayed to learn that I won't be bragging here today. No, you're gonna have to wait a little while before I start showing off the goods. It will be well worth it, though, especially if you're a fan of transforming robots, spinach-eating sailors or country music legend, Dolly Parton.
Stay tuned, boys and girls.