What is a monkeybox?

When I was a little girl, we had a pet monkey named Amanda. My Dad worked in the produce business, so each night he brought home that days culls in a big box - spotty cucumbers, pithy apples, limp celery, moldy oranges and the like. We called it a monkeybox. It was really just trash, but my Mom would take each piece of fruit and trim it, pare it and cut it up to make a beautiful fruit platter for Amanda. Even though it was deemed trash by one, it still had life left in it and was good for the purpose we needed it. That's how I live my life - thrifting, yard saling, looking for another's trash to be my treasure.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

A Sticky Situation

I've shared more than my fair share of collections on this blog. White pottery, vintage tablecloths, gingham aprons, enamelware, vintage kitchen gadgets, miniature pottery, vintage holiday...and the list goes on and on. I am out in search of my beloved collectibles at yard sales, thrift stores, pretty much anywhere there is junk for sale. Throwing down a dime, a quarter and even a dollar sometimes to get my goods.
But, one of my collections, is, well....obtained in a different fashion. No money is involved. I get it by pure deceit and thievery. I steal it. One by one. Shhhh.

I steal stickers off watermelons in the fruit bin at the grocery store. Whew. I said it out loud. I am a thief. Actually, it's funny - the one pictured on the cover of my Sticker Book is actually a vintage one I paid for on ebay. I guess I'm not a total thief!

Okay, so it isn't exactly a felony. It's just a sticker.

I always try to find a label that has adhered itself to the side of the cardboard bin. And sometimes I find a watermelon that has two stickers on it.
I quietly remove the sticker and place it in my coupon file. I am discreet. Unlike a three or four year old Bean that would yell, "I FOUND YOU A WADDERMELON 'TICKER, MOM!" As it says up there in the corner, my Dad was in the Produce business my whole life. He started my collection of fruit crate labels. When labels no longer started coming on crates and boxes, he started saving the watermelon labels for me.

It took me most of one summer to find all three of these Disney labels. I suspect there might have been four, but who would it have been? Maybe Donald Duck?

Those three watermelons wearing sombrero's give me a chortle.
"Melon Up!" What the heck does that mean?????
Even though it might look like I have two or three of some, they has subtle differences like "Seeded" and "Seedless"or different farms in the same company.

I have stickers from Arkansas, Texas and Missouri. I suspect they don't ship watermelons too far from where they are grown due to the girth and weight of a load of watermelons.
So, now you see my silliest collection yet. (Except for the massive amount of figural stressballs The Bean and I have collected...) But, it is pretty much also my only collection that is organized and takes up very little room. And, I can continue to collect them for years in the same book before I run out of room.
Now I'm craving watermelon!


  1. Oh my god!!! I thought I had seen and heard of them all!! But collecting the stickers off the watermelons, would have to be the most outrageous! Rest assured, you must be the 'only one' collecting these, surely!! Wow, I cant believe it, obviously it took great bravery in coming out and announcing this to the world, hats off to you! Now I will think of you when Im in the fruit and veg section of my supermarket.Our stickers are only the size of a pea! Mmmm, you could fit alot of ours in your book! Lol, fantastic!

  2. That is an absolutely gorgeous collection, and I don't think you are stealing, you are preserving a unique piece of American culture for posterity! Now I'll have to keep an eye on the watermelons around here to see if I can find more for your collection!

    And I'm sorry to tell you, but you don't have the weirdest collection. That honor is mine. I have a 30+ year collection of cat whiskers. No, I don't steal them from the cats, I just keep the ones I find around the house that they've shed in a special little box. My collection doesn't photograph nearly as well as yours does though! ;o)

  3. That is really very cool. It's something I think most people would completely overlook. I am surprised by the variety of them. Very nice.

  4. Such a cool collection! I save some off of bananas occasionally, but now I think I’m going to have to start a sticker book of my own with produce stickers. What a fun idea!!

    Heidi Jo the Artist

  5. Anonymous6:37 PM

    Who knew? I guess I should start looking to see if there are different ones up north. Is there a support group for watermelon sticker collectors? Oh, I mean a collectors' club. Honest, I did. I didn't mean support group at all.

  6. Anonymous6:39 PM

    Shall I send you a Hawaiian watermelon sticker? They grow them here!
    Surfergirlie, with no blog

  7. Anonymous7:29 PM

    I am glad you are taking anon comments now. I think you are so
    funny and love coming to your blog.
    I will start collecting watermelon
    stickers here in Texas/New Mexico
    and can mail them to you.
    S., no blog p.s. this would be a great way to collect from all over
    the world!!

  8. That is a very cool collection, better than barf bags off airplanes!

  9. I got to tell ya... you beat all!
    You get the award for the most unusual collection! And can I just say, now I want to be like YOU!
    You inspire all of us to see things a little different. I will never buy another watermelon without saving the sticker or at least noticing it. I am like that... a follower... a copy-catter.

    YOU are a treasure in all of blogdom!


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