Monday, 20 June 2016

Seven Examples of Things I Waste My Money On (Yes, Again): Bootsale Report 4!*

Unbelievable it stopped fucking raining long enough for Sunday morning to be hot and sunny – y’know, like how June’s supposed to be – this meant that for once the weather was on the side of us boot sailors and although far from the giant size it can reach the bootsale was big, varied and very dusty and bloody hot, what it wasn’t was very busy though – perfect conditions except that nearly everyone selling decided to stay at home and or I dunno, do stuff with their fathers, it was father’s day after all – but my father lives miles away and I wasn’t seeing him so instead I spent three hours trawling through other people’s old shit now covered in an extra layer of dust and other people’s hand sweat, lovely!

The end result was actually pretty good (and cheap too, I spent less around £20) but sadly very lacking in action figures, which is the main reason I go to these places, well that and being exceptionally nosey. The good news is that this, another bloody Examples of Crap I Waste My Money On article, will be quite varied, the bad news is this is another bloody Examples of Crap I Waste My Money article, so are you sitting comfortably? Then I’ll begin (again):

Croslite Guy!
£1 ($1.46)
Start off strong? Croslite Guy is the mascot for Crocs shoes, there is a good chance that if you don’t own a pair of Crocs you hate them and I don’t own a pair, y’dig me? In case you missed the subtlety, Crocs shoes can go die in the same fire that Jelly sandals are hopefully already expiring in. I didn’t actually know you could buy the Crocs man, I’d only seen him in person once – being used as part of a display in Hastings and the bastard there wouldn’t sell me one – so I assumed he was just made for shops to use in displays and promotions, apparently not. Why did I want the mascot of a firm whose products I want to burn? Because look at him! the way his holes make little happy eyes, and his hands clearly want to hug you and his little strap moustache he is the happiest shoe and who wouldn’t want one in their house to brighten their day, it works too, today has been nothing but rain and inexplicable paranoia but I looked at Croslite Guy and just for a moment I was lost in his foam shoe joyfulness. Anyway CG was thrown on top of a pile on one of the ‘piles of shit stalls’, you know the sort? They have a van, they just dump all their assorted crap on the ground, maybe a ground sheet if you’re lucky, and expect you to pick through their dirty mounds of shite, I hate those stalls, except when they have Croslite Guy.

Awesome Trading Cards!
£1 each ($2.93 the lot)
Very few trading cards are worth more than ‘fuck all’ and even fewer of those aren’t from Magic, Pokémon or Yu-Gi-Oh but even with that in mind, buying a box of them for a pound apiece is still a fucking good deal, especially when you were around when trading cards were still a thing and especially when one is Toxic Hig.  if you don’t visit I-Mockery regularly shame on you, if you do you might have come across Toxic High like I did, as one of their features, they’re a weird mix of Garbage Pail Kids, Dinosaurs Attack and The Class of Nuke ‘Em High and I-Mockery’ll do a much better job of enthralling you about them I ever would, plus they scanned all of the cards (thus saving you from a return of Trading Card Theatre) so just click the link, they were a great, underrated set and I am very happy to have a box of them. As for Where’s Wally? I I‘m a (warning, this is an understatement intended to make me seem more attractive to women) bit of a fan of the books but didn’t know they’d made trading card versions, it was a bit of an exciting discover. I would have paid a tenner each for these boxes, and it looked like I might have to, the stall seemed to be run by a nerd who knew his shit, or knew his shit in 1999 anyway, he may have done but in 2016 he was just outing a load of crap for ridiculously small prices, like a pound each for his boxes of old trading cards – I would have kissed him if he wasn’t so dusty,

A Pathetic Spattering of Noteworthy Action Figures!
£3.50 total ($5.13)
I’ve not had a good run of it lately when it comes to vintage action figures ahowever while the overall number of figures is pretty dire the actual figures aren’t too terrible. Dustin Hoffman from Hook is in the worst condition (and missing all of his hundreds of accessories, but as the Hoff never wore them in the film I don’t care) but he cost next to nothing so who gives a shit, I already have a Rufio who was so dirty I didn’t think he’d ever been clean so all I need to do I stumble over a Pan in, I dunno, a bin somewhere and I’ll have a my dream set of mistreated Hook figures, yay? The Cop’s by Chap Mei which always sells for more than acceptable online but Toon Don and Fred are the big gets, Fred was only available in a playset and was the only Flintstones: The Movie bendable I was missing, a complete set of Flintstones: The Movie bendies might not seem like an achievement but I SO wanted these when I was a kid and now I’ve achieved what begging and shouting at my mother could not, all for less £12 (the cost of roughly two of them back when). Toon Don meanwhile is from the TMNT ‘Toon Turtles line and I’ve never been convinced they were released in the UK, if they were they weren’t stocked in heavy numbers, certainly not ‘round here and as I live within an hour of Hamley’s they must have been very poorly stocked (I actually think Hamley’s may have stocked them), a certainly never expected to find a working figure at a bootsale, but there he is, he’s missing his bo but otherwise in great condition so I guess it’s really about quality not quantity this summer for me and little  plastic men.

Sonic Stuff!
£6 the pair ($8.79)
The Sonic Stall, oh the Sonic Stall, I should have taken a picture of it. This woman had two pasting tables for her stall, one was normal and the other was just Sonic, on the table, underneath the table, beside the table, all Sonic. Most of it was Jazwares-era stuff and I’ve a feeling that someone else had already grabbed all the good Sonic X figures (they’re pretty pricey these days online) but I did find two things that were seemingly put there just for me. The woman was the worst example of Essex mother and dust or not I wouldn’t have kissed her if she in need of CPR, I loathe these sort of mothers ‘my bloody stupid son was fuckin’ mad on Sonic and made me spend hundreds of fucking pounds on…” why are you so bothered? It just makes buying his Christmas and Birthday presents easier, so long as he keeps his stuff in his room, and you sid he did, it won’t upset your tacky Essex decour and anyway he’s a child, it’s not like he’s a 30 year old man who still spends ‘hundreds of fuckin’ pounds’ per year on Sonic items, what would you prefer he spent your money on? Well judging by the mother I’d suggest she’d prefer he spent it on ‘proper’ (sorry prop-ah) things but again, he’s a kid, let kids be kids and like things for kids before shoving a mobile phone and a training bra in their hands, kids should like toys, not Nokia, and kids aren’t stupid, having an interest isn’t stupid and being of a younger generation than you doesn’t make them ignorant automatically, the only ignorant thing here is you now give me my change go I can go home and play with a Sonic radio controlled car from 1993. Sorry, what was we talking about?

Plastic Ladies!
50p each ($2.20 the lot)
I seriously bought all three of these because after finding (a suspiciously light skinned) Kida I was spurred on to find other small plastic figural representations of cartoon characters I quite fancy, yes I actually did that as a kind of ‘mini-project’ at a bootsale, I need a life, so, so, so, SO badly (and Astrid is 20 in How to Train Your Dragon 2, I thought she was 18 but either way I’m not Rolf Harris).

Giant Green Army Men!
$1.50 for the lot ($2.20)
I have never seen these before and I still don’t know anything about them as I write this, these have no maker’s markings or copyright stamp on them because that’s not the green army men way, bro *places fist over heart* and ‘big green army men’ is a bit of a wide search parameter for Google but I’m pretty sure they’re the same mould group as these Soldiers from this blog (, whoever made them though is a certified toy genius. I’ve included Donatello for comparison to and drive my point home – these are Green Army Men that are roughly in scale with vintage TMNT and Masters of the Universe, these are Green Army Men that can stand up to Food Fighters, they are closer to the dream of a 6” Green Army Man Collectible Action Figure than I’ve ever come before and of course one of them has blood painted on him by the previous owner (I don’t’ think he’s in the picture though…), that’s the green army man way my brutha *places fist over heart*. On another note the stall also had versions of these in red and blue, I didn’t buy them because I’m a Green Army Man purist – green or brown only please – but I think the others may have been snapped up by a dealer I regularly frequent, this cheers me up as the last time I saw him he was getting out of the game, hopefully his interested in, um, Red Army Men and Blue Army Men means he’s changed his mind, I hope he has, my bank account has been a little too full during this vintage action figure summer drought and that’s just not on.

City Faces Bears!
£3.50 for both ($5.50)
If you wonder why I like writing these things, it’s because I get to say sentences like the following: I bought a piece of my childhood from a Rastafarian who didn’t even know he was selling them. A lot of our bootsale is taken up by stalls filled with piles of old clothes and this sort of stall, not quite antiques but nick-nacks and small furniture, both types do pretty well but never from me because I never need a second hand pair of Adidas trousers or a small 1970s magazine rack. But these, these, that bear hung on my wall my entire childhood, it hung on my wall far later than it should have given my age and interest for bears with balloons, it was a permanent fixture and any redecorating or reorganising was done around it with care taken not to even make it that terrifying clink noise that china loves to make, knowing full well that it won’t damage it but not letting you in on its secret. This china bear with a balloon, a knock-off of Winnie the Pooh that I had because I was Winnie the Pooh mad as a small child, was almost a part of me. My one is cracked and sun bleached and god knows where after it got taken down when I moved out, but this one is pristine, it even has a rope for the balloon, I never knew it ever had a rope, mine must have been lost before I was old enough to develop a functioning long term memory - and there was another piece from the same set, I never knew there was more than one piece in the set, holy fucking shit! My mum was with me for this bootsale and we both stopped and stared at it, amazed that someone else had this bloody thing and there was more of it than we ever imagined because, surely, one Winnie the Pooh knock-off is enough for any company right? I had to have them, I have no earthly idea what I was going to do with them but they just had to come home with me and be mine and live in my house where they belonged beyond all question because it is the spiritual home of this bear with a balloon and no one has ever or will ever love a china blue t-shirt wearing bear as much as I did/do. The Rastafarian who owns the stall (he’s a regular, I don’t know his name, but he looks like a Colin) didn’t even know they were there, his wife and daughter had put them out before he’s grown tired of their meddlesome shenanigans and sent them ‘round the bootsale to ‘find stock’ so he could run the stall his way and make jokes about his meddlesome wife. I have a feeling if said wife had been on the stall he a) wouldn’t have dared to joke about her being meddlesome and b) I would have had to have paid more than a fiver for these. I’m still completely in shock that these are real and I have no clue where I’m going to put them but I’m so delighted that they simply are – so I decided to present them to you as if they were a bag of chips. Also that isn’t my bedspread.

And there ya go another round of rubbish that reveals way too much about my psyche, priorities and ability to use punctuation and grammar. Thanks for reading if you did/exist; I promise one day I’ll have something meatier than other people’s ex-junk. 

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