Thursday, April 9, 2009

Conclusion: How to Have a Nervous Breakdown

Part One, the Prelude, is here.

After I listed the trains, inviting the good people of Craigslist to make me their best offer, I went on my merry way, if "my merry way" means dragged myself to the linen closet for purposes of reorganization and deep depression.

I had to take frequent breaks to check my email to see if Craigslist had responded to my Thomas siren song.

The good news was that I had about ten emails.

The bad news was that none of them said "I am coming over with a suitcase of cash right now. I'd like to pick up a cupcake for you on my way. What is your favorite flavor? Personaly, I love buttercream icing."

Every email had some variation of "Is Thomas still available?" and I wrote back, "yes, are you interested?" which makes me think that I could probably lead a prostitution ring. Except it wouldn't be successful because I never heard back from most of those people again. Apparently, they'd hoped that the trains were playing hard to get because they lost interest upon hearing that they were available. Those brief exchanges made me confident that internet dating was not for me.

But oh sweet Lord, the people who did write back.

One woman asked if I could inventory the trains. Seriously, if people think that I have nothing better to do on a Sunday afternoon than sit there and make lists of Thomas trains, they've obviously been reading my blog and those are not the people that I want anywhere near my home. So I wrote back that perhaps she could tell me which trains she was interested in and I could check for her, but that was too personal a question and I never heard from her again.

Another woman asked for a photograph of all the trains. So I took a candid shot. I find it really tacky when people pose their trains just to make a sale. There's got to be some integrity in these things. I emailed this photo and for some strange reason never heard from her again:

By the way, that upside down train on the bottom right that says "Murdoch's Tender"? It means the Tender of Murdoch, lest you think that it's graffitti about Murdoch and how tender it is.

Another woman wanted The Flying Scottsman. The Flying Scottsman? Which one is he? So I googled The Flying Scotsman and it was a retired train that sold on Amazon for over $500. Fucking hell. I always knew that buying Young Ladrinka those educational nuggets would pay off some day! Woohoo!

The only stumbling block seemed to be that I didn't have it. Fuck.

By the time Husbandrinka came back home with the kids, the trains were strewn all over the living room floor and I was sitting on the sofa, surrounded by just-about-to-be-organized linen. It was the perfect storm-- a day of haphazard housework, Craiglist people who refused to bend to my will and give me large amounts of cash for anonymous trains and the goose that laid the golden egg, The Flying Scottsman, nowhere to be found.

I was in pure pre-nervous breakdown by this point, and that's when Husbandrinka looked lovingly at the trains and said, "how can you think of selling them? He's played with them for years." He may have also mentioned that our grandchildren will play with them one day. Which means that I will be living with these trains for the next twenty years.

And please visit Smart Ass Mom's blog today for my guest post.



Blogger ella said...

Well, I'll be watching this sale with huge interest as we have one of the largest Brio train collections outside of Scandinavia...You might want to pull that green power ranger dude out of the middle of the photo though. That might be what's putting the peeps off.

April 9, 2009 at 12:16 AM  
Blogger jon said...

Damn that sneaky Flying Scotsman!! I don't want to alarm you, but I have a couple boxes filled with my matchbox and star wars people in the same haphazard manner. My mom has been storing them for the last 30 years and she will never know life otherwise! ...unless of course she gets rid of them without telling me. Hmmm maybe I should do a surprise audit.

April 9, 2009 at 1:54 AM  
Blogger Roshni Mitra Chintalapati said...

hmmm... at least you don't have to list them! :)

April 9, 2009 at 2:09 AM  
Anonymous LadyFi said...

You might grow very fond of those trains over the next 20 years!

April 9, 2009 at 2:50 AM  
Blogger mo.stoneskin said...

To be perfectly honest, I'm a little upset that you wouldn't want us near your home.

[pitiful whine]

Not even if I brought a buttercream icing cupcake and travelled to your place on the The Flying Scottsman?

Looking at that photo I can make out what appears to be either a Power Ranger figure or a corroded Iron Man. What the hell is he doing in there?

April 9, 2009 at 3:59 AM  
Blogger Christine Gram said...

This is why I love giving stuff away. Find a young punk with no trains and become the greatest "auntie" of all time.

No hastle, big karma points, and you clear the stuff you don't need or love out of your life.

April 9, 2009 at 4:26 AM  
Blogger Belle said...

Is that green man in the middle looks like it could be a deluxe collectors Green Hornet. I believe they are selling for thousands..
Just saying. You should have it checked out.

April 9, 2009 at 4:33 AM  
Blogger daydreamymama said...

I'm with Christine. My son got his trains that way, and his Uncle Jim is still his favorite uncle. It's not exactly the same as large amounts of cash, nor even a buttercream cupcake, but his other uncles are jealous, which is almost as good.

April 9, 2009 at 6:35 AM  
Blogger blognut said...

The whole thing sounds traumatic. Let me bring you a cupcake.

April 9, 2009 at 7:08 AM  
Blogger Beth said...

I have to live with my husband's old toys. On display. As if he were the only damn person to have grown up with cap guns and Lincoln Logs.

What facility will you be going to? Need a roommate?

April 9, 2009 at 7:27 AM  
Anonymous Kristine said...

Young Ladrinka's kids won't want to play with those trains, by then the only toys kids will play with are the ones who play with themselves...that sounded dirty, but that's not how I meant it.

April 9, 2009 at 8:36 AM  
Anonymous Coco said...

I don't know about you but when things are selling like crazy on ebay I am not selling. When I go to sell they are like a dime a dozen. Keeping all those things, such as trains, can be great...if you have an attic to store it all in. When I last moved I could have actually opened a store. For real....


April 9, 2009 at 10:34 AM  
Blogger BusyDad said...

We are swimming in Lego sets. Lego sets that took me hours each to put together. That took a day or two to end up back in the state in which they began. The Library of Congress couldn't even inventory what I've got at this point. Nice Power Ranger, though. I'll take that.

April 9, 2009 at 10:55 AM  
Blogger Jeanne said...

Didn't I read that those things are loaded with lead?

(Just getting even for you not wanting me near your home.)

April 9, 2009 at 11:19 AM  
Anonymous peajaye said...

on the up side, you survived your craigslist experience without contracting an std.

April 9, 2009 at 12:04 PM  
Blogger Always Home and Uncool said...

I sold a bunch of out Thomas stuff on Craigslist to someone in Ohio. Hard $40 I every work for. Does it have this? Does it have that? Can you send a picture of ....! Next time, its straight to the Goodwill.

April 9, 2009 at 12:24 PM  
Blogger iMommy said...

Did you throw a train at his head?

April 9, 2009 at 1:19 PM  
Blogger Heather, Queen of Shake Shake said...

I suppose this isn't the time for me to admit to a sentimental side and tell you I'm saving all of our Thomas trains for our grandchildren too.

Of course, that was before I found out the Flying Scotsman is worth $500. Fuck sentimentality. This is an economic crisis we're living in!

April 9, 2009 at 2:11 PM  
Blogger Erin said...

That box looks like my sons room.

April 9, 2009 at 5:31 PM  
Blogger scrappysue said...

there was a time when i knew all the trains by name. so glad that phase of my life is over!

April 9, 2009 at 6:22 PM  
Blogger Tooj said...

I think Husbandrinka has the right idea. Save them for the grandkids. Is that what you decided on, I hope?

April 10, 2009 at 9:56 AM  

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