Monday, December 8, 2014

Grand opening of a new Goodwill!

Being able to browse for Neglected Fashion Doll Two-Packs while I have laundry in the dryer is obviously cause for celebration.

Indeed, the opening of a new Goodwill adjacent to the laundromat is such cause for celebration that I got permission to telecommute so I could attend the actual grand opening at 9 a.m. last Friday.

Then suddenly, everybody realized the parking lot lines made no sense.
There was a dancing Goodwill mascot. Show of hands: who even knew that Goodwill had a dancing foam mascot?

Yes, of course you can take selfies with the giant blue thingie.
The event was so important that the Valley's third-string Top 40 radio station had a tent.

Friday, we were Top 40. By now, we could be Spanish-language hip-hop.
At 8:40. the line to get in stretched all the way around the building. The first 150 shoppers were promised $5 gift cards. I figured there was no way I was in the first 150, but on the other hand, I had nothing much better to do at this point, so I'd go get in line.

I got a gift card I got a gift card I got a gift card!
The lady in front of me was on her phone, telling a friend how she hadn't seen a mob like this since the days of Dayton's tent sales.

Here's where everybody not from Minnesota is going "whuh? what-where-how-when-why?" and anybody from Minnesota is going "booyah!" Dayton's was the last survivor among the regional department store chains. It was bought by Macy's about a decade ago, but before that dark day, it had a warehouse up in the industrial area where Minneapolis converges with Roseville, and in the parking lot of that warehouse, it had periodic tent sales with deeply discounted furniture and Oriental rugs and other marvelous things. I don't think I ever bought anything, but that wasn't really the point of going: Dayton's tent sales were like the State Fair in being spectacle on their own terms.

Not only was I standing in line with a fellow refugee from the Minnesota winter, but she'd grown up in one of the neighborhoods I used to live in.

At 8:57, the smirking gentlemen in suits had mercy on us all and opened the doors.

Staff flung themselves across the warehouse-side entrance so nobody in line would make a break for it into the sorting area.

Candid shot of Goodwill warehouse.
I didn't bother claiming a cart, as my sole goal was the toy aisle. It somehow didn't seem like the right environment for trying on clothes.

Crowd-surfing did not take place while I was there,
most likely because the surfer would get dibs on the good stuff.
I snaked through the crowd toward the toy wall, slithering through narrow gaps in the phalanx of carts, occasionally crying "excuse me, not pausing to browse, won't be in your way more than a second."

Upon reaching the Wall o' Toys, I determined the location of the section with Neglected Fashion Doll baggies, planted myself with my weight firmly distributed on the balls of my feet (feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent -- the best stance for repelling oncoming shopping carts), and proceeded to go through the stock at a swift and steady pace, getting a firm grip on anything that might reward closer examination.

This Goodwill had gotten smart (they thought) and put articulated and non-articulated dolls in bags together, rather than putting two similar dolls in the bag.

It had also marked the two-packs up to $3.99, instead of the usual $2.99.

I passed up a couple of articulated blond Barbies because yes, articulation, but I don't have anybody who needs that skin tone, and the face-ups were unexciting. I passed up a Winx Club Bloom with articulated knees and ankles because Winx just don't excite me either.

Then I got to the hidden Monster High section at the back of a peg.

Monster High dolls were a whopping $4.99 each, which is high for a Goodwill baggie but less than the $7 that the lady at the Park 'n' Swap charges. And I have a gift certificate, which means I can get two for $5, or essentially $2.50 each, because of course, confronted with this choice, I'm not going to just get one doll for free because who does that?

It's all right, Skelita! We're safe now. Soon, our hair will be boil-washed.
So I got the original Scaris version of Skelita Calaveras plus "Picture Day" Frankie Stein.

Poor Skelita was wearing somebody else's dress, so she needed something of her own. My first effort at a dress really isn't it, but at least she looks annoyed rather than pathetic.

I think the little purple one likes me.

Skelita gets pulled into a discussion with D'Laura and Briony over which teen retailer has the best styles.
We need to take you to Paradise Valley Mall, Skel. That has ALL the cool stores.
Meanwhile, Frankie compares ruffle dresses with Cleo. (Frankie's is tighter because her fabric was stretchier.)

The nude lips work, Cleo, but your hair... I don't know about the hair.

Let's try something more like a pony tail, 'kay?
While Cleo and Frankie are bonding, Kistiñe sidles up to check out the first new gal with a complexion like her own.

I don't know, Frankie. I think she's Basque.
Here, in a group portrait, we have all three generations of blue-skinned monster girls.

It's one of those complicated family trees.
When I went back to Goodwill on Sunday (mid-laundry), it was still frantically crowded. Nobody had snapped up articulated Bloom, but I decide this wasn't kismet and left empty-handed.


  1. Great stance you took, I'm going to try that too nexct time I am in a crowded store :-). The blue girls look great together!

  2. LOL at your thrift store stance! I guess my stores don't do big events like yours did. I remember when my favorite thrift store opened they didn't do anything special at all.

    1. I was really surprised that opening a new Goodwill was a major civic event!

    2. Wow, they made it such an event. The dresses you made are cute.

  3. I wish I could find secondhanded MH dolls, brand new ones are so expensive... so I'm always hunting the cheapest lines.