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Friday, May 17, 2013

Bed, Bath, and Beyond (the $1 unit)

It's been awhile, and we have lots to write about, but it's just been super busy.

Yesterday we went to a caravan auction and there were a couple of units that were decent for $200-300, but that was too much for a unit that wasn't "Great"  that we didn't have good feelings about.   There were a few $35-45 units that were okay, but they needed a lot of work, and it's not that we're lazy, just that we currently have about 3-4 units that we haven't even opened/dug yet, not to mention lots of friends that are moving that need us to sell all of their stuff.  So, there's no need for more small, non-exciting inventory.

Which is exactly why when this door rolled open, we decided we were not interested.  2 SUPER FUNKY mattresses (you can see the mold and mildew in the pictures),  and a couple of little things.  I saw some purses that seemed in good shape, so that was a good sign, but everything was just thrown all around.  Had it not been for the mattresses I would have maybe considered it but did we mention the mildew?   So we moved away from this, the very last unit of the day.   Only everyone else did too.   The auctioneer was having us sign a no bid (witnesses are required to sign that no one bid on the unit),  and it was then that we remembered that we have a friend with a dumpster very nearby.... SO, we went ahead and bid $1 on the unit and that was that.

It's been forever since we've gotten a $1 unit, I can't even remember how long, and I was kind of surprised because there was this bottom feeder guy there (he buys EVERYTHING under $20 and has a particular affliction for old mattresses) and a couple of newbies and none of them were interested.  Their loss, our gain.  At $1 I figure even if we sell the 2-3 purses we have tripled our money, so we're in good shape.

Here's what the unit looked like when the doors rolled open:

Notice all of the stuff thrown on the floor behind the mattresses:

This is a new one!  A peanut butter jar filled with....  pieces of mold and mildew?   Not sure if this was sheetrock, or paper...    remnants of a peanut butter sandwich?  Or maybe it's proof for an insurance company of Katrina damage?    Whatever the case, it was pretty gross.  There was lots of trash and old food in this unit.

A bag of Mardi Gras beads is a staple in New Orleans.  It's either a sign of someone who rides in parades themselves, or someone who is not a lifelong resident of NOLA (ie, they are new to the city and want a souvenir) :)

Lots of duffle bags filled with clothing.  The men's pants are all pretty nice.

Boxes and bags filled with clothes.

A few suitcases filled with clothes too!  There were also a lot of bath mats, towels, curtains, that sort of thing.

Laundry baskets and laundry hampers filled with more clothes,

And in one of the little boy's lunchboxes I found a camo swamp boat!  Yes!   #louisianalove.   Plus, we LOVE Duck Dynasty so this was a cool little find.

There are the purses we saw!   Some of them are really nice... so at least that triples our money just right there.

I almost impaled myself while bending over picking up clothes on this long metal rod.   Took forever to figure out what it was.... the BOTTOM of a salon style barber chair.  A shame we didn't have the whole chair- they are expensive and a very easy sell here,  so sadly we had to throw the bottom away.

While I was moving around one of the duffle bags filled with clothes there was a loud thud at the bottom when the bag hit the ground.  That's always a sure sign that you have something besides clothes in the bag, and we sure did.  I took all of the clothes out (Brian was getting rid of the mattresses during all of this, btw, credit where credit is due!)  --  and I found a glasses case, and a few toys, including this Ken-ish-GI-Joe-ish kind of man doll.      I swear he was looking creepily at me.   So,  I threw everything back in the bag to try to consolidate (we were in the car and not the van),  and I SWEAR TO YOU ,  this is how the doll NATURALLY landed in the bag.  I noticed it when I was moving.  Couldn't have done it any better if I had tried to do it that way!

Look at that little creeper checking out his surroundings!

He's still trying to stare at me!

Okay Ken-Joe, you win, you can have a kiss.

There was also an AWFUL lot of bedding.  Probably over 20 blankets, 10-15 pillows, and some stuffed animals.  Took us awhile to figure out why (maybe that was just the easiest thing to leave or the cheapest thing in the locker, or because they were so dirty they need to be abandoned, whatever).   We did find a card for Children's Hospital and evidence that the family had lived hours away in Mobile, Alabama.  I know hundreds of children travel from very far away to go to Children's Hospital, and this storage facility is very near the hospital, so I'm guessing that's what happened here.

 Our thoughts and prayers with this family- we hope everything is okay for them!

On a lighter note, this fuzzy headband wobbled as I was walking through the pitch dark unit and "ran" across my leg and it scared the bejeezus out of me!

It didn't take more than a half an hour to pack up the unit and everything was going great until we realized that we had filled up the car.  Oops.  We didn't have very far to go, so Brian piled the clothes on the hood, the pillows and blankets on the roof, and the bottom of the chair on the trunk!   

You should have seen the looks we got driving out of the storage facility!

And of course, when I opened the trunk, there was that doll, staring right at me!  

Until next time,

We bring the fun to auction--

Storage Heroes

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Welcome Wheel Fans!

 If you're here because you saw me on Wheel of Fortune, welcome!  It looked a little something like this:

To read about the rest of my Wheel of Fortune experience, you can click the following links:

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

To see a video or two about Brian (my business partner) and I, and to find out what makes us Storage Heroes, click here:

And to read about some of our wildest, craziest, and just plain funniest storage units, you can follow these links.  Please note where it says adult content, and choose wisely!  We don't want to offend anyone if we can help it.

Whore-der   (Adult Content)

Our 50th Unit - with lots of videos of us digging

To the XXXTreme  (Adult Content)

An awesome unit with cigars, liquor, and a great art collection

The records unit

Please also friend us on Facebook, and visit our webpage.

Thanks for stopping by!


Saturday, March 23, 2013

5 Things About Today's Garage Sale: Heels, Watches, Toys, Toilet Paper, and Pee!

Hey y'all!  Rebecca here. My mind is kind of a scrambled, jumbled mess, but I've been up working hard since 6am this morning so you'll have to forgive me.  Garage sales are hard!

Even though sales are grueling, today's was so comical I wanted to share these few moments with you, even if they are just going to be listed out and not in a true blog format.

A little background:  We are working the estate of a 77 year old man who passed away suddenly last December.    He has a huge house filled with lots of nice things.  Vintage electronics, tools, and German (his wife was German) items, to name a few--  very cool and interesting stuff.  We've opened the whole house up for these sales and we have people wandering around looking at all of the treasures.  Here are just a few pictures for reference:

We also had a camera crew at today's sale, nothing uncommon for us as we've done several pilots and sizzle reels for various TV projects and things, as well as the instructional videos for (by the way, they are getting ready to release some of these videos again!  You can find out more about it and see some of the videos here: )   So, it's nothing unusual, but it's still always kind of cool to see our sales through the perspective of a cameraperson, so that made things a lot more entertaining for sure.

Also, the following things happened in no particular order:

1) A lady showed up in short booty shorts and five inch heels.  She also spoke little English.  Brian was very pleased!    Aside from that,  we had some return customers from yesterday who had purchased a $400 brand new in package with tags on it Croton watch for $50.   They had picked out $30 worth of items and I basically gave them the $50 watch plus the other items for $60 total.  Taking $20 off, right? I knew that was about the most I could get for that watch, and the guy seemed to generally like it, and it really was a fair deal. I explained the Croton brand and showed them all the paperwork, etc, etc.  The guy said he liked it, they bought it, they paid.  Today they show up saying basically that they "couldn't sell it" -- and I'm like, "what?",  basically, piecing together that they tried to take it to a pawn shop and sell it saying it was real and the pawn shop said no thank you.  1)  I said it was a real watch, not real gold.   If it was real gold I wouldn't have sold a 3 ounce watch for $50.   2)  There are no returns at garage sales and 3) and most importantly, do NOT try to "pick" us.  You will not make a profit.  We research EVERYTHING.  They left, but not before they made it a point to try to steal another watch (of way lesser quality).  It's a shame, because I truly liked them and really tried to give them a really good deal.

2) We had the other usual cast of nickle-and-dimers, including this obnoxious set of about 5 women who all spoke a different language that I did not recognize,  only one spoke English and was translating back to the others, but everytime I'd say a price they'd all shake their heads no, so I'm wondering how much of that was an act versus how much was for real.   The long and short of it was that they picked out about $10-12 worth of items, but then wanted 8, count them, 8 of our brand new with tags belts that we got from Macy's that literally are Steve Madden and Nine West and retail for $40-80 a piece, and I told them that we normally sell them on eBay and at sales for $5-15 each (truth), but because they had so many I would do $3 each (wholesale)  and so it would be $24 for all, and then I'd give them the other $10-12 worth for $5.   They hem-hawed about it, and what they had really wasn't that much (besides the belts), so then I was like, fine, give me $25 for everything.   They still thought that was a bad deal (seriously?)  so I reminded them that they were getting beyond wholesale on the belts plus everything else for free.  They still kept hem-hawing, and finally I was like, look,  Brian will be angry if he sees me selling these belts for that cheap, you have 5 seconds before he comes back in here and says no, you need to decide.   5..... 4..... 3..... 2....     let me just tell you, they had everything in their purses and the $25 in my hand before I got to one!   They also took all 7 Diet Cokes, Sprites, and Waters that were on the counter, but I guess that's neither here nor there.  Some people!

3)  Our friend and wholesale customer showed up with his three small children.  It's always a pleasure having him around, especially with the boys, and they made our day in more ways than one, especially in the following scenario.  We had given the oldest boy (we'll call him Boy 1) a bunch of stuffed animals which he was sharing with his younger brothers.   He also spotted a customer who had a child about his age, and he walked democratically up to the other boy and said "Here!  Here's a toy for you." The other child (Boy 2) said nothing and ignored him.   Because he was facing the other way, Boy 1 tapped Boy 2 gently on the shoulder, and said "I have this ___ name of toy___ here, you can have this one!"  -  At this point, Boy 2's mom (we'll call her Evanora, which you'd understand if you've seen the new Oz movie) turns and harshly says "he doesn't WANT it. We have plenty of toys at home!"     For anyone to be so rude to anyone, especially a child, particularly a child who is trying to be kind to your child, is ridiculous.  Just take the toy and throw it away later or hide it, for pete's sake.  I expected Boy 1 to cry, pout, or run for his Daddy, after all he's only about 5,  but he very calmly and politely looked up at the woman, and said very matter of factly, "That's nice, I have plenty of toys at home too!"    -  I couldn't have been prouder of the kid, and he's not even mine!

4)  Speaking of the boys, there was a time at another point in the day when myself and the Director/Camera Guy were walking through a hallway dealing with tons of people and all of a sudden we heard a faucet running.  We turned and looked into the open bathroom, only to see one of the boys peeing, pants around the ankles, into the toilet.     Hilarious!  At least it was in the toilet!

5)  Speaking also of the bathroom (apparently all good things happen in garage sale bathrooms),   when we arrived at this particular estate we were pleased to discover that there was running water and electricity,  so we were thrilled that we had a bathroom if we needed one.  There was no toilet paper, so we made sure to bring some, and Brian, being frugal as he is, took the toilet paper home with him despite my warnings that we would still be in the house a lot and may need it.  Three separate occasions passed where either I needed it or a customer asked for it, and I finally decided that enough was enough and I'd grab some from my own home, which I did the other day, and put in the house so we'd be prepared for sale days.      I apparently must be wasteful and wicked, because I guess I spend too much on toilet paper, buying a super amazing brand, or something,  because today, I noticed when I was in the bathroom,  that my 4-ply roll of Quilted Charmin had been replaced with a 1-ply roll of  generic mart brand toilet paper.   I tried to give Brian the benefit of the doubt and blame it on a customer, but then I remembered who I was dealing with.  It didn't help that it had green icing from Brian's recent St. Patrick's Day Birthday cake ON the cardboard part of the toilet paper roll (when we had used it to wipe off our hands and faces).   Busted.   Who DOES that?  So Brian, I hope you enjoy your one roll of MY 3-ply paper at your house!

Here's a picture, by the way, of Brian's birthday cake.   I totally don't feel bad about it any more:

*If you want to know what we censored out above, ask us on Facebook!

Until next time,

Storage Heroes

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Letters from a Storage Locker #17 - "Okay, lover?"

"Letters from Storage Lockers" are always some of our most popular blogs-  people just love reading letters or journals of other people.  It's hard to explain why.  Maybe it's because people can feel as if they are a part of a secret, maybe it's just a nosy characteristic that lurks deep inside of all of us,  maybe it's a secret longing to identify with others or feel as if we're not really alone.   Whatever the reason, we are always constantly looking out for these letters in lockers in order to share them with you, and we constantly receive feedback on how these tidbits of other people's lives have made your days infinitely better.  In our search for stories we have looked for letters in storage units, thrift stores, garage sales, and estates as well-- but I wanted to share with you something that happened to me today that just reaffirmed the idea that stories are everywhere.

I found a letter today by accident, and not just any letter, but a vintage one.  Super score, right?  I must have found it while digging a storage unit, correct?   Wrong!

You see, we live in New Orleans, home of the greatest Mardi Gras celebration anywhere, and just last year I had the ridiculously good fortune of having a friend invite me to become a founding member of the Mystic Krewe of Nyx.   Named for Nyx, Goddess of the Night,  Mystic Krewe of Nyx is an all female krewe of (now) almost 1,000 members. The Nyx goddesses  ride through the streets of New Orleans on beautifully decorated floats, following a theme which has ranged from anything from "NOLA Reality TV Reigns" to this year's "What A Girl Wants".   Here's a shot of me and Nyx sisters of mine on our float this year, "The Princess Bride."   

We have a ball, throwing not only the typical Mardi Gras beads, stuffed animals, and doubloons, but also anything girly, pink, and light up.   Rings, headbands, you name it... we aim to throw a lot of items and to delight the crowd.  You can imagine how my storage unit finds have allowed me to really make my throws special.  This year I threw everything from bookmarks to cocktail rings to beanie babies.  And our signature throw, the absolute most prized throw of all, is the hand decorated purse.   Members slave for hours with glitter and hot glue guns making each purse really special, and the crowd goes nuts for a coveted throw.  Here's one of my purses from this year:   (You can see how messy it gets as well! It's a creative process!)

I'm getting to the point, I promise.

I find hundreds of purses each year in Storage units, and share those with my float sisters and other Krewe members for either free or something like $1,   and occasionally, they return the favor by finding purses that they think that I would like.   This particular purse (below) is one that I've had for months.  I honestly am not sure whether it was from a storage unit, garage sale, thrift store, from a family member, or from a Nyx sister, but I can tell you that I came back across it recently at a garage sale we had, and I actually loved the purse so much that I decided to use it for a year as a clutch and then decorate it for next year, 2014.    

Here's the bag:

It's beautiful, and vintage, the interior lining dates it at LEAST 30 years if not more, and it's definitely a beautiful sight to behold.     So, the other night, when I was working an Oscar Night viewing party for a friend, and needed a glitzy glamorous bag to go with my red carpet outfit, I ran and thought of this bag last minute.  I threw in my lipstick, mascara, some cash and my ID, and was out the door.   I opened and closed the bag all night and although I saw a small piece of paper, I thought it was just the inside of the lining, something common with bags from that date.  It was yellowed just enough so that it matched the lining perfectly.

Flash forward to today.   My little glamorous mini bag is inside my real purse (Who doesn't put a bag inside of a bag every now and again, girls?) - and Brian and I are crossing the Crescent City Connection, returning from an estate we had worked on all day.  The connection is a toll bridge, and I needed a dollar.   Going through my real purse and finding nothing smaller than a $20, I open the clutch to see what's inside, dig my fingers deep inside the pockets looking for change, and find that little scrap of paper, which I now realize has writing on it.     Voila!   I thought maybe it would be a receipt or something, never in my wildest dreams could I have imagined it would be a marriage proposal.

Dated 3-3-1974, this love letter reads "I,  S.E. Nelson, love you, Nancy Wilhutt.   I promise to marry you.  Okay, lover?"         It then has two other names written,  H. G Sanders, and M. L . Migliore, although I"m not sure of their meaning.   A friend suggested that they may have been witnesses and the drawing underneath the LA could be perceived as a seal making it "official."       Either way it's one of the sweetest things I've ever read, and I wasn't even looking for it.

Would it have been better had a found a piece of gold forgotten inside, or perhaps even a diamond?  Of course.  Am I still thrilled by this letter?.  Absolutely.    A piece of jewelry may have given me a better payday but it wouldn't have had the ability to tell quite the same story. We have names, dates, and if I do a little research (which I fully plan on doing) I may be able to find out if this couple ever indeed married, if they had children, if their dreams came true-- well, his, anyway.   We have no idea how she felt, we don't have her response!   Considering that she saved his letter in her handbag, I'm pretty sure it was positive. ;)

The moral of the story? Keep your eyes open, stories are everywhere.  Hopefully, you'll return the favor, and share them with us-  but even if you don't, hopefully you'll share them with someone and keep the memories alive.  Possessions are just things, we illustrate that point to our clients all of the time-- but it's the memories, and the things with the sentimental value, that are our most cherished possessions and that remind us most of the people we love.

Have a great week, everyone-- keep your eyes and hearts open!


Storage Heroes

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Lights, Camera, Inaction???


As many of you know, storage units are a very popular business nowadays.  We get calls, e-mails, comments, Facebook messages, and letters almost weekly asking us to be interviewed for an article, or to do a few minutes of tape for some kind of segment someone is working on.  We're happy to oblige, after all, it's fun, it brings more people to our blog, and it only takes a few minutes.

Sometimes though, we're asked to actually submit, or participate in, a concept for a new television show--   we'll go back and forth with producers for weeks sending interviews, talking heads,  and footage of us live in the field (digging units, buying units at auction, and having garage sales, for example)-- and eventually they may even send down a bonafide camera crew to actually film us to get a higher quality video.  Sometimes they'll let us send in our own tape, which is dangerous to say the least.

We always want to share this tape with you immediately but are always restricted.  Sometimes the interview gives away the concept of the show which is never owned by us, so is not eligible to be released at all, ever.   Sometimes we actually have to sign an agreement saying that the footage (and our likenesses, basically) are property of the network or production company for a period of 6-12 months.  This is a really common practice.

We've had about 5-6 TV shows offers at this point, and have done a myriad of different clips and things.  We'd like now to share with you just a selection of a few we've done throughout the last two years.  Keep in mind that we're a little delirious-- Brian and I live in separate homes,  don't always see each other every single day, and often times the only time we had to shoot these videos was late at night after we had already had a full day of moving furniture and emptying out units.   Plus, California time is 3 hours earlier- so you might see live feeds from 12 or 1am our time!

Enjoy!  We'll try to post more of these a little bit later.

And if you're wondering, we do have more current pending TV show offers- but it's never really a big deal for us.  We've seen so many of them not pan out that we're not really expecting it to happen.  And if it does, it's great, but that's not why we do what we do.  We buy and sell units because we love it and it's profitable-   if someone wants to pay us extra to do that on tape, well, that's just icing on the cake!  We're not going to change who we are, obviously, as you can see from these hilarious videos!

Until next time,

Storage Heroes

In this video we discuss what it's like going to a caravan auction and what it was like when we first started years ago:

We tell the other teams on this reality competition show why it is that we're going to win!

We tell the other teams on this reality competition show why it is that we're going to win!

We discuss Donkey Kong, noises with the face, and everything else that shouldn't be on video.

Brian and Rebecca do impersonations of each other:

We're going to start a band called Warren & The Buffetts.

Fortune Favors the Bold!

Garage Sale Wars-- Find out what happened when we set up on the same day as 3 other sales.  Oops.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Letters from a Storage Locker #16: $APPHIRE

Our comments are in bold / blue.    Warning:  Adult Language & Content.

 If you're not familiar with the drill by now what you're going to see below is basically a letter that we've found in one of our storage units.  Typically we return these as we always return personal effects even when we aren't supposed to, but in this case, either the tenant declined personal effects, was unable to pick them up, or the storage facility did not want to hold on to them.    So-- rather than throw them away, we let these people's memories live on,  their lessons be learned from, and their lives inspire (or confuse) others, in these "Letters from Storage Lockers".      We'll have a book of these out really soon!

There are 15 other letters (well, 14 letters and 1 journal)  up on the site, you can find them by searching for "letters" in our search box up top.   And as always, the disclaimer:   This is not our content.  We are now the owners of this content, I guess, but we are not responsible for any of the thoughts, offensive language, foul ideas, or anything else expressed within. We do not really spell this poorly. Content may be sexual, poorly thought out, inappropriate, or otherwise something you may not want to read where your kids and boss may possibly peek over your shoulder.

Background on this letter is that the author was incarcerated (we never find out why other than that it's "petty") and he spent his time writing to random women that he found online, through dating sites, or that were recommended to him from fellow prisoners.    We've omitted his real name not only because we always try to do that, but because in this case he gives his rapper name--  which is very unique.  It also contains a dollar sign as a letter.   

Here goes:

Wuzzam wit ya, Sapphire?  Did I spell ya name right?  Well if I didn't , don't trip shawti.  What happen'd to da names Diamond or Ruby? Fuck it, canary Yellow!   Haha, im just playing wit ya.  But shit big bruh an me be talkin an what not since he got here.  I been here since Nov, 4 on some petty shit.  His folk come in like a week for him or maybe da same time.  I cant tell, I dont pay no body no attention in here.  If it wasn't for meetin da big homie, i'd probably be in my room writ in mo tracks or some'n.  Thats what i do, I rap.  On account of some other thongs.  How bout you?  What you do, what you into?  I aint sayin you scared, but i know alotta girls scared to keep it g.  I aint here to judge ya, I cant. Who am i?  Big bruh was tellin how down their yawl gutter an what not.  What you a dope-girl?  Shit, I need one of those.  Most of these girls scary down here.  Don't know what to do wit themselves. Get round a nigga like me, don't know how to act.  But god'am enough of me an tom bout this bullshit. Tell me bout you.  Wuz ya' real name fa'starters?  My name (omitted, rapper name), you can call me Mike, but I may have warrants.  Ha ha, naw im jokin.  But thats my real name.  Even though not one person i know besides my grandma call me that.  They either holla'n (rapper name),  Prince, or Man.  Aight.  Im done talkin for da time bein.  I don't know if I said too much or not enough.  But shawti believes me when I say this.  I don't een talk this much.  Yeah, if you gone write back, ya can send it wit da homie's girl letter.  Or directly to me.  Either way, at least someone writin me.  Info an da back though.  You be ez lil shawti.  Holla at ya when a g hear from ya.

Ya dig.

Ya Folk,
* - * - * -  (his initials)

You can write a g at ---->    (and the name, prisoner number, and prison address).

Now, we looked him up and can tell you that he is now out of prison and actively making rap songs.  Mostly as collaborations with other artists, but at least he's making them.  And I have to admit, they are actually PRETTY GOOD!    We will try to contact him and see if we can share his music with you--  we just don't want to give people a way to potentially figure out his identity until we clear it with him, obviously.    We want to wish him well and tell him we enjoy his music, and we hope he doesn't go back to jail.  We also want to find out whatever happened with Sapphire!

Until next time,

We put the AIL in MAIL, 

Storage Heroes

Thursday, January 3, 2013

You should have written your Grandma back!

 Disclaimer:   We bought this unit a LONG time ago.  Over a year ago.  I found the pictures the other night when I was going through old pictures and remembered we hadn't blogged it.  I also found something else that I still have in my house that you'll see at the very end.  Despite the 100-something blogs we've put up here, believe it or not, just like Storage Wars, we don't show you EVERYTHING-  there's just too many units some times.  So we have a couple of them saved up!   Expect to see more of these in the future.  The good news is, you're getting to read it now.  The bad news is that I remember very little about the price of this unit, etc.  Sorry!   You want to follow us along to auctions with a notepad, pencil, and digital camera, feel free!  Maybe you can bring a Bongo too.     "I'm Sheldon Cooper and I'm playing the bongos.... "

We can say (because we remember) that we attended a caravan auction at facilities we rarely ever go to (they rarely ever have auctions and when they do it's just 1 or 2 units and it's usually during another auction we'd rather go to), but we love it because it's literally RIGHT NEXT DOOR to our warehouse, so it's super convenient.   In fact, 8 out of 10 people who come to our warehouse for the first time believe that because we "do storage units"  we must live at (or be housed at) the storage facility.  So we've had to go down there multiple times to re-direct people to where we actually are.  We've actually even had people show up to our garage sales believing that we were selling off actual units, not contents of units.  Like a regular storage auction.  And a few people actually think we are selling the UNITS "what's your best monthly price on a 10X10?" -- but I digress.   On this day, we went to the location right next to us, and didn't find anything we liked, but we then went to the second location (not  right next door to us but not too terribly far away either) and saw this unit that we weren't crazy about, but we did spot the antique dresser.    Our competitors didn't take us too high (I remember it being under $200) so we were happy with the unit.    The competitor who dropped out is notorious for never carrying more than like $200 with him, so we're unsure if he dropped out because he couldn't afford it or not.

Here's a view of the contents after they were loaded into the van.  I believe we made 2 trips, at least 1 1/2.

 You'll notice the dresser, some clothes, a bucket, and some random boxes and bins.

Another view:

Another view including the bins:

We would have gotten pictures of the actual unit, except for a couple of things.   One-  they were out of carts, so we were frantically trying to find one, because Two, it was trying to rain.   Three,  as soon as we get the dresser out it starts raining, so we confirm the antique marks, know exactly what it is and what it sells for, and no sooner get it back into the unit (until we can find a cart because we don't want to leave it out in the rain if we're not going to move it), when the broke jerk who didn't bid against us comes sauntering up.   Now, just to put it into proper perspective, this is the same guy who complained to the auctioneer that we were taking unwanted pictures of him at auction (false)  and asked for us to be kicked out and banned from attending future auctions.  (We later learned this is because he has a worker's comp or insurance claim and does not want to be photographed lifting heavy furniture.)    This is ALSO the same guy who GAVE our information to a former tenant that he knows to be a constant rule-breaker (putting it nicely)  just because he could.   GRR.    But again, we digress.   We'll call him Big Dummy,  and here's how the conversation went:

Big Dummy:  How'd you guys do?
Us:  Fine!  (in unison)
Big Dummy:   Even with the crapper dresser?
Us:   It's Antique! (again in unison)
Big Dummy:  No it ain't, it's particle board, and the drawers are crooked, and it's factory stamped, Big Lots or something, and I bought one last week for 20 bucks.
Rebecca:  It's actually a Saltman dresser--
Brian:  And it's from the 40s or 50s, maybe earlier--
Rebecca:  and it's stamped on the back, but also signed--
Brian:  And the serial number (which is only 3 digits) indicates that it's exactly what we say it is,
Us:   And it's worth $200 plus!!!  (in unison again).

He just literally turned around and walked away.  I DO remember that much.   And he mumbled the entire way out.

Anyway,  I don't remember much else about the unit, other than the letters, but we'll get to that in a bit.

Back to the dig:

First thing out of the van was a lamp, and an ORECK vacuum cleaner.  Don't know if Oreck is big where you live, but the guy who invented it lives here in New Orleans and they are a very good, well trusted, well loved vacuum cleaner.  You could probably cover it in your own poop and still manage to sell one. We can usually get at least $40-50 for a used one, and sometimes even more.  We were satisfied with this!

Gas canisters are always useful.  Especially in South Louisiana, where Hurricanes are a common occurrence.  We sold these for $5 each, easily.  I think we may have had them for 5 minutes tops.

Assorted military duffel bags, cleaning buckets, and cleaning supplies.  You may have remembered the military duffel bags from the 'Don't Ever Come Back Here Again!" post- where someone tried to shoplift it and Brian busted her.   We performed a very special parody of the occasion on that blog.

Our bounty so far:

There were also some tools, car equipment (funnel, jack),  random gardening equipment, men's shoes.   An iron.  This locker was still very haphazard and we couldn't really figure out what kind of tenant this was yet.  When things are packed THIS haphazardly, it usually means one of three things.   1)  Our tenant was a drug / alcohol addict,  2) Our tenant was on the run, or going to jail, and packed in a hurry,   or 3)  Our tenant was a younger male (no offense, men!)  --   in this case, all 3 were also possible!

A graduation tassel ?   Made into an earring?

A cane?  For walking?  Beating people?  Who knows.  We still have NO IDEA who our tenant is, which is odd at this point, usually we know man/woman/age/whatever.

Clothing / Laundry-   Men's and Women's, Medium sizes.   We're getting somewhere, now.  None of the clothing is special, none of it is even slightly remarkable.  I think the best brand may have been from Target.  Seriously.  But it should bring at least $20-$30 at a garage sale, so we'll take that any day.

A bunch of electronic gadgets, cds, video games, technical manuals, and paperwork.  FINALLY!  Paperwork.  Now we're getting somewhere.  Not in terms of money but in terms of Rebecca's peace of mind.

How sweet!  A card to our tenant from his Maw Maw (Grandma in South Louisiana).   If you didn't read it, she asks him how he's doing, thanks him for calling her, and hopes he's attending a nice church.  She sounds like everyone's grandmother, and like a really sweet lady.  Here are a few samples of her advice, if you couldn't read the handwriting:

* I will call you sometime, you won't know when, to see if you've found your way to a nice church.
* I really hope you will use your gift in music to praise the Lord
* To have a friend, you have to be a friend
* Work hard, do your best always, and remember, I love you dearly.

I *REALLY* want to find a way to meet this lady. She sounds incredible.   She lives in Shreveport, which is about 5 hours away from here (and probably where he's from), otherwise I'm pretty sure she would have visited him as much as she could have.

Back to the dig: Some really stained shorts.  We really hope that's paint, although it really looks like bird poop, right?

At least there are some nice church-shirts in there as well.  Maybe this is what he wore to visit Grandma?

Lots of first aid supplies, and toiletries, which we love (if they are unopened!)  I think this first aid kit is STILL sitting in my bathroom closet, although it's almost empty at this point.  It served me well though.

Some cables, wires, and toiletries mixed together.

I don't think we'll be keeping THOSE vitamins

Yep,  this first aid kit is definitely 70% less full than it was then!

Its' funny how this unit has suddenly resurfaced, because this is over a year old but this shirt is sitting on my living room table as we speak.   We're gifting it to our friend Mickey for Christmas!

So now we have "Clothes 4 Madison and Angslie" -  now I'm really confused because I thought we were dealing with a single guy with the occasional sleep over girlfriend, but now we have two daughters as well?

Lots of kids clothes, but lots of cute adult girl clothes as well.  And even though they were all cheap, some of them were really cute.  I remember getting a few work tees out of this unit.  LIke this one,

And this one

This is actually the stack that I took for myself:

While I'm removing items from the van, I'm sorting as I go.  We're having a sale the very next day, and the weather promised to be good over night (a CONSTANT thing for us is checking the doppler and weather forecasts), so we had a genius thought-  Brian would set up tables and move stuff from inside the warehouse outside, to prepare for the sale, and as I dug the unit out of the van, I could just place each item on the table on which it belonged.  Piece of cake!   Made everything super easy and we didn't have to do things over and over again.

I decided to wear one of my new shirts!

Kitchen ware set:

It's almost time for the dresser, but first I've got to get all of the stuff out from it's drawers!

And by the way,  the drawer wasn't broken, it was just in wrong-  someone packed in a hurry and put all the drawers back in in the wrong places.

We find SO MANY empty electronic boxes.  Everyone saves the box (no idea why) and never keeps the frequently used electronic devices in the box.  If you see a laptop, camera, cell phone box in a unit- the stuff is never ever inside.  We always say this, yet we still get people bidding against us for MacBook Pro boxes.

Cleaning products!   ALMOST as good as gold.  A cleaning product in the hand is worth one we didn't have to buy from Wal-Mart.

Why do people keep phone books?   Why do people even still make phone books?  Isn't that what the internet is for?    I get that there are 50 grandma's out there who still use them,  so just make 50 and let those people subscribe, like the newspaper.  Shoot, you could SAVE the newspaper if you stopped printing phone books.  But I digress.
And please, don't STORE your phone books.  Do you really think when you go back to your storage unit, you'll need a phone book?   You'll have one at your new house,  one at your old house,  one in the driveway that just got delivered, and probably one that someone gives to you because they hate you.

More miscellaneous weapons.  I don't even know what this one does.  A file?

Ooh, bags for the Oreck.  Our vacuum stock just went up!

We see automotive manuals all the time.  WHY not keep them in your car? Hrm?

At least the phone book gives us a clue.  Funny how just a single piece of paper in a book can give you a big clue about a person (car was wrecked) -- I guess that explains the manual being out of the car!

We found a pawn receipt for a REALLY REALLY nice Gibson Les Paul - not sure if the tenant ever got it back or not.  We were excited for a split second that it might be in the locker but it wasn't.  More evidence of a possible drug problem. 

Apparently our tenant, in addition to being a budding guitarist, was also studying Massage Therapy. I  could seriously use a massage right about now!

Converse box looks promising...

Until we open it.  Dominoes!  At least we managed to play a game of Dominoes.

He also WORKED at Domino's.  Coincidence?  It's getting real, now...

One of my favorite games, what's in the bag?

Glittery stuff!    Elastic-y ribbon and such.  Score!  Also something with CARS on it! Vroom!  (Yes, I'm 5. I'm aware of this.)

This bag was boring, it had Christmas decorations (which if you haven't noticed by now we find in EVERY SINGLE UNIT)  and some other crap.  I mean stuff.  Nice stuff.  Would you like to buy it?

A box that was painted.... by someone... using nail polish:

Containing hair products.     Not special but we did manage to sell them to some salons and spas and random other people who like their hair glossy and smooth.  I think we made around $40.

Elvis, Elvis, let me be... keep that pelvis far from me---  is something you don't have to say EVER, once you have these amazing JAILHOUSE ROCK BOXERS!      I asked Brian if he wanted these and he said no.  Actually, I think it was more like HELL NO.   Sad.

Papers, taxes, and more letters from Grandma.  I really hope he read the letters from Grandma.

Kid was about the same age as me in elementary school.  Err..   (yeah, like he was 81 in elementary school, while I was a mere 5).  I MEAN that we're about the same age NOW, although we obviously went to different schools because I've never heard of this one.

What does this even mean?  Who is Ian?  Why does he need to autograph your taxes?  Is this a smart way to get someone named Ian to pay the bill?

More massage books.  We sold them all but have more from a different unit if anyone wants to buy some.

More tools!   It even has a pill organizer for when you're hammering?   I guess it holds screws.  But doesn't it look like a pill organizer?

I should write more blogs at 2am, yes?  Comic gold.    At least I'M giggling.

Hands that heal!

That course ain't THAT short!

More books, blah blah blah blah blah.

This thing was wrapped up SO much.  It was like Fort Knox trying to get into it.  I had to peel off like 12 layers to get to the point where I could even tell how big and long it was.   NO DIRTY JOKES!

It's a city of New Orleans official... something.  Name Badge?  Door badge?  and no, I don't feel like turning it around.   Please don't arrest us, we didn't steal it.

Binoculars!  Great for Saints games.

More tools.  Or workout tools?  What does this do, strengthen your hand muscles?  For giving good massages?  I thought the above mentioned books helped you do that?

GROWING UP WITH SCIENCE!   A science supplement!  It's like, science vitamins!

A tub full of more clothes, more Domino's shirts, more work pants.

A cool glass that looks like a high ball glass but only holds a shot.  Shenanigans!  In the best possible way!    Now all the chicks will think you're big stuff when you're only drinking a little bit!   We'll sell this to you for $1000.

He actually had quite the shot glass / trick shot glass / Hard Rock cafe shot glass / Coke bottle collection.  We still have a few of those coke bottles for sale.

The Hard Rock shot glass collection.

As I watch from the bushes, I now notice that the creature is doing something it NEVER does in it's natural habitat.... it is DIGGING!   A unit!  Voluntarily!    I guess it / he got bored.    I took a picture to commemorate the occasion.

Make that two pictures!   And I just realized the DVD is labelled "WAR!"

Oh, I do have to give props where props are do.  Brian did also find the single greatest thing to come out of this locker, and perhaps one of the greatest things to come out of any locker, period.  It needs no words or description:

Yep.  Here's the back of the postcard:

More clothes!

And more clothes!

Okay, at this point, I've now found about 100 letters from Grandma.  Only I've not found any letters TO Grandma.  Which, don't get me wrong, we don't usually get letters FROM the tenant, because they've usually been sent off, to someone, who doesn't live at their address-- makes sense that they only have one side of the conversation, it's not like e-mail or texting, after all.    However, almost EVERY letter from Grandma starts off with "Please don't forget to write me back like you did last time..."   It's so sad.  At one point she even sends him $1 so he can buy some stamps.

More clothes, we did get some nice leather and suede jackets, we retailed them for just under $100 for all of them.

More tools!  There were 2 of these... I think Brian MAY still have them.   A, because we don't like to sell weapons, and B, because for some reason Brian wanted them.  No idea what he'd do with them....  I guess he thinks he's all bad and stuff, even without the Elvis boxers.  Oookay....

This is what it looks like unfurled.

A ha, there's the other one!

Speaking of unfurled--   Hugh Hefner was now working his way up the alleyway...

Stained clothes and pillowcases were thrown away. Homies don't play DAT!

More sweaters!

More jackets!

Including this one that's like Leonard Hofstedter meets the Foo Fighters.   Yes, I know I have lots of Big Bang Theory references tonight.  Shrug.   But we do well with grungy-alternative-rock-types of clothing, there's always some kind of thrift or consignment store that wants them.  We sold this for around $30.

Folding chairs are like gold in Louisiana.  After all, we have Mardi Gras and Crawfish boils.

More pants.

Brian DEFINITELY agreed to wear this!

Dear Eric,  we appreciated that you labeled this box although we're sure you didn't label it for us.  Either way, the contents you list are NOT EVEN CLOSE to what's actually inside the box.  Learn to label.    Love, Storage Heroes.

Aren't skeletons supposed to be bony?  They aren't supposed to be STUFFED!  This is freaking me out!

Another note from Grandma:

She's basically giving him instructions on laundry,  telling him not to HOCK ANYTHING (in capital letters), which I guess meant it happened an awful lot, further supporting the drugs theory, and also tips on budgeting money and getting a full-time job.

Then I found the saddest thing I have ever seen, in any storage unit.    Keep in mind we've seen death certificates, divorce certificates, baby teeth, baby shoes, purple hearts, diaries of prostitutes and those who have slept with prostitutes to feel love--   nothing really though as sad as this, I don't think.    It's the thing I still had in my house to this day.

A shoebox, filled with the envelopes, that Grandma had sent.  Not just one or two, but HUNDREDS.   Notecard envelopes, white envelopes,  legal sized envelopes, even the larger brown envelopes she mentioned in the note that had 2 and 3 stamps.    And every single one was stamped!   Pre-stamped and PRE ADDRESSED!  No excuse for someone not to send a quick note in an envelope like that, right?  There were even packets of extra stamps, in case he needed more.  And that, you see, is why I still have this box in my house, because not a single one had been used.

What a shame.

Here's the note attached to the top of the box, from Grandma:

I literally cried for about 15 minutes while Brian looked at me like I was a nutcase.  How sad to have someone love you so much, and to not even write them, not even one time, when they've given you everything you need?  Life does terrible, cruel things to people, but none suffer as much as those who love them.   I really hope that this lady got at least a few letters back, and I really hope that he turned things around and found a better life.  I wish he would have written her back sooner, but I definitely hope that somewhere along the way he realized that Grandma is much wiser than him and that he listened to her advice.  Because it was really good advice, and she is a really good Grandma.   I was tempted to write her on that day,  but I didn't want to cause her more heartache and pain by letting her know that the unit was auctioned off--  I also didn't want to incite fear with questions that I couldn't answer.  I  do think about her (and him) often, and wonder if I should write to her to see what happened-- but just like doctors and lawyers, I think even storage heroes should keep their boundaries. 

I'll never forget this unit though!  We hope you never do either... and that you take a moment to contact someone who loves you this new year!

Until next time,

We put the Pal in Pen Pal,

Storage Heroes


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