Monday, August 31, 2009

mentoring monday ..

there are so many people we meet along the way in this business who have helped us in one way or another. people who have showed us the way, taught us how to do things, allowed us to look at things with a different eye. i want to share with you a few of the ones i have met. the following is part of a series i want to write and welcome others to join in with their own stories.

he could have been a dead ringer for my father. that is the one thing that stands out most for me about harold. my father had passed away in the late spring of 1992. we met harold in the waning summer months of the same year. we rented a booth at canton in the new pavillion 3. (when the creek was still a creek). being a hot summer day and us being who we were, (we always meant to arrive early, but always ran later than wanted or expected) we arrived late in the evening. he startled me as he walked across the empty concrete floor in his overalls and ball cap ( 2 items my father wore frequently). for a split second, i honestly thought i was hallucinating.

we came to learn that harold was married to a sweet sweet woman named clauda. i am unsure of their exact ages, but i think they were close to the same age as rod and i. it was quite obvious their love was the lasting type. they were in it for the long haul. they were a team. they dealt in coca cola items ... later in cast iron .. and later in artificial fruit.. along the way harold tinkered and reworked things they found and things he made. he made some beautiful tables. they had some incredible cupboards from time to time. they lived in athens. they were part of a group of us that set up at canton in pavillion 3 during the 80s and 90s.

what harold taught me... he taught me that it would be a good canton weekend if the final payday of the month fell on the thursday or friday of that canton. he taught me to give my junk importance. he taught me to move things in the booth around. and he coined the phrase that in my opinion pre-dated shabby chic - his term for the type of primitive, rusty, crusty, painted up, chipped around type of furniture was - 'chickenhouse chippendale'. i love that.

rod and i stopped doing canton when ebay began. we lost contact with harold and clauda. we heard that he passed away. but he will always be part of our experience of learning and growing in regards to flea marketing and junking in general. i am grateful to have known them both.


  1. Loved hearing about Harold. There ARE certain people that just stand out in our lifetimes. Sometimes we can't even put our finger on it, but there is a bond and connection that Nice that you can recognize and remember him.

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  3. Right now, I consider people such as YOU my mentors. Do you have any idea how much your stories and pictures and ideas inspire and motivate me? Well, now you do.
    I love the advice to give your junk importance...been doing that for years, myself. To me, it literally breathes and speaks to me. Oh, and I'd be remiss if I didn't express my love for "chickenhouse chippendale'! ROFL, that is hilarious!