The dreaded garage sale
Every fall, my wife and a friend have a garage sale. Just the thought brings shivers up the spine of most outdoorsmen. Most wives think if an item has not been used during the past year, it needs to find a new home. Guys, on the other hand, keep ...
Every fall, my wife and a friend have a garage sale.
Just the thought brings shivers up the spine of most outdoorsmen. Most wives think if an item has not been used during the past year, it needs to find a new home. Guys, on the other hand, keep things just in case of emergency, if for no other reason. But there are many good reasons to keep outdoors equipment.
There are many things that only get used once a year. I have not used my bow since last bow season, going on a year ago, but I will use it again. Ice fishing equipment has not been used since the last time we had ice. My wife is getting to the point she understands this, though she does not like it. The real problem arises when it comes to clothes.
Hunting clothes are specialized. A person does not wear the same clothes elk hunting as they do duck hunting. I may only go duck hunting every other year and it may be four or five years between elk hunts. Since I have not worn some items for several years, my wife thinks they are fair game for the garage sale.
"We have too much stuff" is the frequent lament. I do not understand this mindset. Perhaps she has too much "stuff," but I am still working on my stuff collection.
Some items may be slightly tattered or torn. They may actually be more holes than cloth, but there is a reason they are that way. She tried to put my lucky camo hunting shirt in the garage sale. I caught that one just in time. Her reasoning was since it was so faded a person could barely tell it was camouflage and had a more holes than cloth, someone might give a quarter for it to be used as a grease rag or to make a rug. The horror of such a thought. That shirt was one of the first items of hunting clothing she bought me when we were first married. It is the shirt I was wearing when I got my first deer. I do not wear it often, since it has become rather fragile, but I have been known to sneak it on under my other clothes on especially important hunts.
No, I am not superstitious.
The down-filled Browning coat is another thing. The zipper is broken, the pocket is torn, but it is a Browning. A person looks cool in the woods in a Browning. Since the zipper is broken, when it is really cold out, I not only look cool, I am cool. If a person were to put a great big hunter orange shirt over the down coat, it keeps the coat closed, the wearer warm, and meets or exceeds all states number of square inches of fluorescent orange required. If the coat escapes the garage sale, I must make sure she does not sell the orange shirt that is twelve sizes too big for me. It is the only thing that fits over the down coat. I may look like a giant orange marshmallow, but nobody is going to mistake me for a deer. When I get back to camp, I can take off the orange shirt and look cool again.
I knew I was in trouble when my wife asked me about my old faded hunting hat. "I have never seen you wear this," she said. "It looks too small. And what is this pin on the front that says Barry and Bill?"
She was right. She had never seen me wear it since it was the one I wore on my first pheasant hunt. I was ten years old at the time and Barry and Bill referred to the 1964 presidential election. My wife does not like clutter, but she is sentimental. Barry and Bill are still on top of the gun case, but I have concerns about a few other items I have not seen in a few years.
Walter Scott is an outdoors enthusiast and freelance writer from Bloomfield, Iowa.