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.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Not the Right Type

The Flea Market where my booth is located has a Facebook Page.  They use it to show photos of certain booths or individual items that have come in recently.  I am an Admin to the page, so everything shows up on my personal page too.  Yesterday, I had just finished checking my emails, when I saw a new group of photos being posted.  I always like to see if any of my items have been featured, so I looked through all the pictures.

Several photos in, I spotted this - a RED Brother Prestige typewriter.  Oh my gosh.  It was beautiful.  I know that red and pink typewriters command HIGH prices, but I wasn't sure about this particular brand.  
I did a little surfing on ebay and Etsy and found this one on Etsy for $350.00.

Meanwhile, on the FB page people started asking, "How much for the typewriter?" and "Has it sold yet?"  

I didn't know how much it was since I couldn't see a tag.  There is a sign on the table and after I blew the picture up, I thought it might be $60.00, but I still wasn't sure. I decided to use my Admin super powers and call out to the Flea Market ask about it.  The girl that answered the phone is a friend of mine, so she helped me out.  She went and got it out of the booth and brought it to the phone.  I asked if it was metal or plastic.  She said it was heavy and made of metal.  Then I asked if it was $60.00 and she said, "No, it's $30.00."  I said, "SOLD!"  I made no mention of it's value.  I just told her that I wanted it.  They all know I love vintage.  So, I just left it at that.  

I was trying to work out when I could come and pick it up, when my friend asked me about a quilt top I had in my booth that she was interested in.  After some discussion, we worked out that she would take the quilt top, she would pay the Vendor the $30.00 for the typewriter and then she would deliver the typewriter to me.  It was going to be MINE and I didn't have to put out any money for it AND it was going to be delivered to me!  It doesn't get any sweeter than that.  

She called today and I went to meet her up on the corner.  When I got there, I could see it in the backseat and my heart leaped into my throat.  It was really mine!  I was going to go straight home, photograph it and get it listed tonight.  I was so excited!  

Just then, she opened the door to get the typewriter out and the overwhelming smell of spray paint hit me in the face.  When she handed it to me, I could tell that the typewriter had been spray painted red.  It was not original.  Dammit. Dammit.  Dammit.

Here it is - it looks legit, doesn't it?  I know the Vendor that did it wasn't trying to fool anyone.  She just painted up an old typewriter.  The whole place is full up with painted up old junk.  I'm the dummy that got dollar signs in her eyes and said, "I'LL TAKE IT" before I even went to look at it.  So, it's my fault.  It really does look good, doesn't it?  

You can see the red paint on the keys here.  Oh well.  I'm really not out much except the quilt top and I got it for next to nothing.  Plus my friend is a seamstress and she is SO happy to have that quilt top.  So, that's all good.  Plus, I think I can sell the typewriter in my own booth for the $30.00.  It would still be good for a wedding, or a Senior photo shoot.  It's just not worth the BIG BUCKS I had already tucked away in my mental wallet.  

Well, you win some, you lose some.  
Onward and upward!


  1. Oh that is to bad but one more lesson learned in life.

  2. Durn it! Still it's cute in photos!!!

  3. Well....CRAP. It never would have ever occurred to me to PAINT a typewriter. Bizarre. I do think you can easily resell it because the color is great and for sure there is someone out there who won't care that it's not authentic. Wonder if you used a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser if that would take any of the overspray off the keys? Might be worth a shot. I'm disappointed for you, though. When I saw that first photo my heart kind of leaped for you!

  4. Why wouldn't they have taken the keys off to paint it? was my first thought. You could get those cleaned up and at least make it look a bit nicer and then charge $45. ;) If you can get the keys off I would start with vegetable oil, rub it on and then let them sit for a bit, try to keep it off the letters and numbers though. then crack out a magic eraser and some dish soap. good project for the The Bean. ;) I use vegetable oil to clean spray paint off my hands and also for cleaning my brushes when I use oil based paint. Now everyone want go cook with THAT eh? Works just as good if not better than mineral spirits. ;)

  5. Oh, no! I'm crying for your loss. I guess no one died, but still, it would have been so cool. And who the heck paints a typewriter?

    Totally off topic, but has The Bean watched the The Breadwinners on Nickelodeon yet? It might be too young for him, but it's about these things (guys?) who deliver bread. Just like The Breadman does!!! OK, they talk about farts and stuff like that, but still who ever thought they'd make a cartoon out of a bread delivery person?

  6. AT least it was $30 and not the $60 you thought for a bit..that would have been a much harder pill to swallow. That spray paint on the keys does look sloppy and would be nice if you could get it off.

  7. Geez, I didn't see that coming at all! Good luck with it whatever you try!

  8. Would you like me to send you a bottle of "Dammitol" for days like this?

  9. I can sympathize. I have bought things at auction that I hadn't seen 'til they held it up, only to find some kind of damage. Usually they point out flaws when they see them, but not always. Bummer! It had to be a pain to paint that typewriter! You probably already have the pain off the keys, but I'm sure a Magic Eraser would take it off.

  10. Ack! I was so excited for you! I've also bought things at auction that had issues I didn't see before purchase. Hope at least you can get your money back c


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