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2013-10-05 - 10:48 p.m.
So I guess I should talley up the casualties of our journey back to Astoria, Oregon so far:

FIVE inflatable beds:

1. One that leaked.

2. One that exploded (we weren't even doing the hanky panky on it!)

3. One that was just too small.

4. One that was sent to us after I cancelled the order (after realising I re~ordered the same brand that had exploded on us before, and multiple reviews stating the same. Ooops!)

5. And one that was JUST RIGHT! (In the realm of blow~up beds, that is.)

And then, as if that was not enough, we were nearly electrocuted by the electric blanket we had bought to keep us from getting hypothermia. Apparently, having an electric blanket plugged in when lightening strikes is NOT RECOMMENDED. We had some sort of power surge and started getting shocked while we were trying to sleep. Ouchy! And scary!

(Not to mention, we had one of the worst/most amazing thunder and lightning storms I've seen in all the 20 years I've owned this building!)

And THEN, we had to have paramedics come because Alan was having a severe diabetic issue. (But as I mentioned in a tweet, we got a free smoke detector out of the win/ *I'm being sarcastic!*)

And on top of all of that, it is now 55 degrees F, INSIDE my building!!! (I think the F stands for Fucking Cold!!!)

So, guess what....WE ARE GOING BACK HOME TO CALIFORNIA!!!!! Yes, we are wusses.)

Stay tuned...there is always more to come.....

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2013-09-24 - 12:04 a.m.

So we're back in Astoria again. We had to do a mad dash back to California due to some health issues...some routine, some not so much. But having been declared as healthy as possibble, we did another mad dash back to Astoria.

And here we are again.

It has been one long, seemingly continuous road trip...up and down the Coast, out to I-5, down and back again....about 1200 miles each way, and several handfuls of dive motels along the way. Some of them amazing, some not so much.

And I want to blog about all of it...but you know me....that rarely happens. So...I have been dragged kicking and screaming into the world of Twitter! (I know....I'm starting to sound like your mom.)

So, I think you can find me on there as @purpulfully.

Serioulsly, I have no idea what I'm doing. But I think this might be the best way to sort of keep up to date with all the crazy stuff I've got going on right now. If you have trouble finding me on twitter, let me know. Or if you have any twitter advice...I'm all ears. I need to figure this thing out.

Stay tuned!!! Big things to come....when I can get it all figured out!

(The photo/gif above is the view from our roof of a container ship going up the Columbia River.)

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2013-09-02 - 12:18 a.m.

Sorry it's been so long between posts, but here's the view from where I sit when the shop is open. But, keep in mind, it is constantly evolving.

There are two more rooms that we are working on opening, so we have closed the shop for another little bit until we can get that all organized. As they say, "Good food takes time!"

Also, we took another break today to go shopping. Because, seriously, antiquing/junking/picking is an addiction for me. And we came home with a carload of amazing stuff!!

Stay tuned, people, stay tuned!

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2013-08-24 - 9:54 p.m.

Time for a few words about everyone's favorite show,
American Pickers.

First of all, the next person who walks into my shop and says anything like: "Gee, you should get those guys from American Pickers in here..." or if anyone even even mentions the show "The American Pickers," they automatically qualify for an instant coupon to pay 50 percent MORE than the original asking price on any item!

I guess a lot of people don't realize that "reality shows" aren't really "REAL." They may be based on a real concept, an interesting story, but they are staged. Actors are contracted to play the role of certain types of characters. They are followed around by film crews.

Most of the time I live in Los Angeles. A ton of my friends are in the "industry." Quite a few reality shows are filmed in and around my neighborhood, including one of those pawn shop shows. For the most part, the "real" scenes for these shows are sets or scouted locations dressed up to look the part of whatever show they are filming.

But let's get back to the reality show, American Pickers. Yes, it is a fun show to watch, and it does give you the feel of what it would be like to travel around finding cool old stuff and buried American classics and then turning them into a perfect world.

But people....this is a TeeVee show! This is Hollywood. This is not REAL reality.

Let's break it down, shall we?:

~The principle characters are actors. And no doubt, most of the other characters are too. If you have lived in L.A., you have no doubt seen these guys in all kinds of commercials and small parts wayyy before they landed this show. I know I have.

~There is a camera crew that follows them around.Think about that. A camera crew. Which means they also have location scouts, prop consultants, wardrobe and make up people, craft services (because this would likely be a union crew, they would also have to provide catered meals called "craft services").

~They have a brand new van. No real antique dealer/picker that I know has a brand new van or a crew of workers and access to bigger brand new vans and cranes as needed to haul their finds all across America. Also, you might notice, a majority of the time that they are being filmed in the van, they don't seem to be paying all that much attention to the driving. That's because their van is on a special flat bed truck/camera rig and is being towed around the location so they can concentrate on acting/dialog without the distraction of actual driving. (I see this all the time in L.A.)

~A seemingly unlimited budget. Yeah.

~An uncanny ability to show up in a new van with camera crew in tow, and make it look like they just happened to stumble on the perfect find and were able to make an incredible deal. Nobody seems to notice the camera or crew!

Think people....THINK!!!! This is NOT real reality. These shows are staged.
I've been in the antique/vintage/junk/second hand business for almost 30 years. My family has been in the biz as well as many of my friends. American Pickers is a super candy coated version of what most people think the business would be like....when people dream of how cool it would be to go out in search of these treasures and make a living doing it.

This is not the reality. And it's crazy now how a majority of my customers now want to compare me to the show in some way. It's crazy how much these reality pawn shop/antique/road show/warrior shows have changed the business.

EVERYBODY is an armchair antique dealer/picker now. And it drives me FUCKING CRAZY!!!!!

Next time you watch one of these shows, pay attention to where the camera and camera person would have to be to get those shots, and ask yourself how come nobody ever acknowleges that there is a camera person there. (And trust me, if there is a camera guy, there is also a crew of people standing around.) Reality, yeah right.

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2013-08-20 - 4:11 p.m.

ShopCat...waiting for customers...

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2013-08-16 - 10:02 p.m.

At some point, exhaustion just kicks in. But no amount of anything seems to cure my deeply seated insomnia. I took this in the middle of the night while laying on our blowup bed.

(Side note: A couple nights ago we were jolted out of a deep sleep by a big BOOOOM!!! which sounded exactly like what you'd imagine a blowup bed might sound like if it popped. We never did figure out what that sound was.)

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2013-08-15 - 12:27 a.m.
I swear I will put up more pictures soon...really! But if you happen to be in Astoria, Oregon this weekend, and you know the secret handshake, we might actually let you in.

We'll be open in the afternoon from about two till six, Thursday (tomorrow) thru Sunday (THIS Sunday). You may have to knock. You may be able to just wander in. We may be open later...or earlier. If you need the super secret handshake code, just leave me a note in the comments.

We just don't know how this will take place. But to assure your place in line, bring alcohol!

Updates to follow. Don't miss out!!!

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2013-08-07 - 8:57 p.m.

Order is erupting out of the chaos!

This just gives you another speck of an idea of what's in here. Some of these things I sooo do not want to part with, but it is time. Every piece has its own story, and that's part of what's making it even harder.

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2013-08-06 - 11:43 p.m.

So...this is our bedroom for now: a blowup bed next to a Texaco sign. (But of course, we are not without the luxuries of extravagant sheets, down comforter and no less than six down pillows. I KNOW how to do the "Indoor Camping Adventure!")

There is still so much to tell. At some point I will catch up on the amazing trip up here. But for now we will stay in the moment.

Coming soon: more photos, the local paper may do a story on us, and much more craziness.

Stay tuned....

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2013-07-27 - 12:06 a.m.

Well....I now have wayyyy too much to catch you up on.

We finally have the internet figured out....but we will probabably be too busy filling our 16x7x3ft dumpster for the next few days to blog about it all. I am very much too overwhelmed. (Is that a sentence?) The picture above is the view from our toilet. Perhaps that gives you a bit of a feel for what it's like here.

Stay tuned!! Please! There will be much to tell. And if you happen to be anywhere near Astoria Oregon, for heaven's sake...let me know in the comments. We will be having some parties (some public, some VIP), some huge sales, and maybe some auctions. Don't miss out! Leave a comment if you want to be in on the VIP action!


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2013-07-16 - 11:36 p.m.
Honey, I'm home!!!

So...we actually made it to Astoria, Oregon.
My home that was my home, but is now not my home, but will always be my home, but for now is "The Indoor Camping Adventure" home. (And I have full trademark and copyright rights to that phrase, and if anyone tells you different, bring them to me first.)

There is a ton to catch up on. We stayed at themed cabins, motel rooms straight out of the 1970's, a quiet getaway that turned into a massive party central.....

But I am a bit overwhelmed at the moment, and when I post pictures soon, you'll see why.

Baby steps, people, baby steps. Stay tuned....

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2013-07-08 - 11:05 p.m.
In the 'hood, stocking up for the road trip, yo!

Ha! In reality, this is just our corner liquor store where we pop in for lottery tickets and emergency Jack Daniels. The road trip begins soon, but we will need to visit bigger outfitters such as Whole Foods, Raleys, and Bevmo before we begin our epic trip up North.

Stay tuned!! The adventure begins soon...

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2013-07-06 - 9:37 p.m.
Sometimes the worst of times can end up being the best of times...and right now, I'm really hoping that that will be the case.

Over the years, I've been very lucky/blessed to live in some amazing places, and as many of you know, the last many years I've had a place in Astoria, Oregon as well as San Francisco and Los Angeles.

But now it's time for a reshuffling of the deck. Even though I plan to hang on to all three places as long as possible, these places don't exactly pay for themselves. My jobs have dried up due to a trickle down of a bad economy, and my Love recently lost his job too.

So...what to do?

Well, wayyyy back in the day, I had an antique store at my place in Oregon. When I decided to head south for Love and income, I locked up the shop with everything in it...including my personal collection...all of which I said I would never part with. And it's all still there...all 10,000 sq ft...yes, ten thousand square feet....full of antiques, collectibles, vintage, funky junk, and some just plain old weird stuff.

The time has come to liquidate.

So I'm headed up to Oregon on an epic road trip with the intention of having a sale to end all sales and find good homes for all the things I said I'd never let go of.

What that means to you is, Watch This Space!!! I will try and blog this whole thing out, in part so that I can show things that I'm selling, post updates and info for any events or auctions or sales, etc. There may be parties! There may be online events! Who knows!! Everything goes!!!

But stay don't want to miss this blogging adventure. We'll start soon with my epic adventure of just getting there, Part One: driving up the California coast.....

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