Thursday, December 17, 2009

What a Star

That someone wanted the giant star of Bethlehem (it's 5 feet tall) from an old 1950-60's civic display this holiday season does not surprise me. That she wanted it over-nighted today, across the country in time for the weekend, now that constitutes extraordinary. Even the UPS team looked shocked, never mind that the cost to ship was 4x the price...Hey there are salvage slaves and then there are salvage slaves. Clearly I am not alone and what a relief that is. So when all that soulless commercialism gets you down, and the sea of look alike objects is drowning you, know that the salvage slaves are out there, good times and bad, leaving no stones unturned to find that unique something that moves their hearts and compels them to go to extraordinary lengths to make that object their own. To those of you who have supported this salvage slave in this most extraordinary of years to continue to persist in this particular obssession on your behalf, my deepest heartfelt gratitude. May all your days be merry and bright...marisa

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Top 10 Reasons To Shop The Heritage Co. This Thursday Night

You get 25% off your purchase from 5-9P**

House 365-the media sensation needs a roof (buy a shingle, help the homess)

Free drinks and snacks

Hand-made holiday gifts by local elves; nice, naughty and no place else

Loads of vintage ornaments, every kind of wreath we could think up

Make your own wreath with private studio stash of found treasures

New stuff in since you were there kidding

Friendly, crafty, knowledgable staff

We are always closed when you come by

You missed last Thursday

**guest artist's work not included

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Holiday Openhouse This Thursday

It's a roof-raising, salvage slaving, kinda holiday party. This time, bring your own tool belt. We are making wreaths (and will continue to on our late night thursdays), putting shingles on the roof of House 365 ( to raise money for the homeless and shopping for that one certain someone on the list for whom the mall holds no allure Bring your crafty friends or just support one. Royal Oak is promoting late night Thursdays as part of the shop local campaign so don't just stop at the yellow building on the tracks, park it (check out the new lot across main street, close is sweet!) and take a walk downtown. Every retailer is in on it and there's plenty of places to stop and take in a snack or social beverage. Hope to see you at the party!!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Salvage Inspired Wreaths at Inn Season Cafe

Get the magnifying glass out for this one, it's the poster from our wreath show at Inn Season Cafe, our favorite vegitarian restaurant down the street from the shop. We made so many wreaths from all that great detroit salvage we've been collecting, we are happy to have all that bare wall to hang some of them and they are so great together. No two are exactly alike. If you come by the shop, we will soon be sharing all our supplies for you to peruse and choose from should you want to make one yourself. We will be open late night thursdays up to (but not including) Christmas Eve and making wreaths on those nights so bring your crafty self and your crafty friends and family.
December 3rd is our Holiday Openhouse from 5-9pm. We are also hosting Clint Snider's travelling art project house 365 through Tank425 Gallery

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

On the set

OK can't save the lafayette building or it's beautiful crown of terracotta finials, but hey that telephone pole laying on the side of the road got a new life! Well a girl's gotta eat gang and now that I'm a prop house for movies, when they want weathered telephone poles, I'm gonna find them. Oh I could get all maudlin about the madness of spending gobs of money building temporary artifices to tell stories while the real ones fall apart but hey, this is the most fun I've had in the salvage business and this movie racket might be the salvation for this old city afterall. Today I got to take my 10 year-old Wyatt downtown to to see the big action on the set of "Vanishing on 7th Street" and there on the street scene is the old Heritage Co. Sign they rented, and a neon sign of ours too, sweet. All that equipment, cranes and trucks, fake sidewalks and lights, people running around talking into headsets all in an old Detroit parking lot. We loved it. I dropped my sign off to them yesterday with the help of my painter friend David King. It just so happened they were painting the store fronts just then and gee could they use a muralist. So I dropped off David too and today admired his quick work painting David Bowie and Joey Ramone on the "record store". Now I'm scrambling to get "props" ready for the new film on the scene "Crave". Oh it's fast and furious and these people work around the clock. As I write this, they are filming Vanishing and will be until midnight I guess. You gotta have stamina for that gig. I'm just happy to see all this weird stuff used, by people who think it's cool, pal around with fun creative types and show my 10 year old how vast and clever and cool the real world can be.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Urban sculpture

Call it post halloween fatigue, we were gonna work on our diy wreaths for an upcoming show and just didn't feel like sitting in the studio. So Jon and I did what we would always rather do on a sunny Monday in the city, junk around. We were on the hunt for lumber for Red Dawn (the movie being filmed here) to blow up and other assorted projects and located this oddity. Like the tree growing through the bike found this spring, the barrel of nails rusted into a solid mass is a product of nature and time. In a place like Detroit, things of no consequence are often left behind and in the absence of human activity, mother nature takes over. Rather like an African fetish with heavy biblical overtones, provided by the universe and rescued by the salvge slave.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Reunion Tour

I'll tell you what will turn Detroit's fortunes former Detroiters and reintroducing them to what makes this city such a hot bed of creativity that's what. We have squired around two former Detroiters recently who had forgotten just how amazing the architecture and art scene is here. The Lafayette Building is coming down and CCS alum Greg Simons visiting from Portland got the inside tour with me and the wrecking crew as we surveyed what might be salvaged from the remains of this 1920's building. The rooftop terracotta and graffitied windows should not be left to the landfill. We've got a week to find enough interested parties to purchase some or all of it or down it comes and the 150' drop is not gonna be kind. Greg use to work for Richard Gage Design Studio and he flew in to show his sculptural work with reclaimed plywood at the studio's inhouse gallery/practical art school Don't let the small venue in the Hazel Park warehouse fool you, he sold very well and was reminded just how loyal and supportive Detroiters are to their artists. Meanwhile, my high school pal Jennifer and her son Jagger flew in for a weekend from Miami to see her old stomping grounds and the fall color. She was ready to buy a house in the Boston-Edison district after I took her to an Estate Sale in one of the still beautiful and intact mansions down there. We stopped for provisions at the Eastern Market htt::// and yummy Supino's Pizza, took our boys to the Henry Ford Museum and marvelled at the minds and machines that made the city so great. Last but not least, we had to go to the old neighborhood, drive by the houses where we grew up and have cider and donuts at Yates Cider Mill It was the most perfect fall day ever and the grounds have been expanded since we were kids with a path along the river, all well-maintained. I hadn't been out there in years, and of course you never do these things if you don't have guests. So here's my challenge, invite a friend to visit you in Detroit, take them around to your favorite haunts, help them spend their tourist dollars here, say nice things about Detroit.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

something's cooking

Sometimes things come easily to you and you might not even notice it. Take last night's impromptu dinner. I cook dinner for the 3 of us most nights, now I had two extra guests, old friends, so it was really no big deal. It gave me a reason to take it up a notch, but I didn't have a lot of time to make anything way out of my repertoire. I picked up a few groceries I needed anyway and then threw it all together with what was in the pantry and what was left growing by the driveway. Et voila, as Julia would say, just enough time to light the candles and set the table. Judging by the comments that were still coming this afternoon, it was more special than I thought. I've had a lot of cooking experience which helps, but my friend Jackie, co-owner Avalon International Breads, says so do a lot of people and it doesn't mean the food is good. Cooking just comes naturally to me, like breathing or talking. I might think it's good, but that's just my opinion. The other thing that comes easily to me is beautiful things. Partly from having done it so long, lots of people know where to find me and partly I know where to find it. The recession has put a serious restraint on my checkbook, but that doesn't keep me from bringing in new treasures for the store. This week my dealer pal Rick had a fantastic collection of tiles he'd had in his collection for 15 years, gathering dust in the basement. Rather than put them on ebay, he gave them to me to sell at the store. He had just sold a frame for me at a show and I am only too happy to return the favor. No money changes hands until it sells and we both benefit. Just when I needed it most, and boom, in comes something good that gives me reason to say, come on in and see what's new this week.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Getting by on scraps

Sure was slow in the shop this week. People were out, but they weren't buying. Nothing like a little anxiety disorder to motivate this week's create-new-inventory-out-of-what's-around. The 1930's diner stools have been hanging around the shop looking pretty shabby with the tired yellow vinyl seats. I'd had an epiphany of how to spruce them up with fabric samples I got from my very good friend and designer Charles Dunlap Now I had the time and motivation. Using a heavy duty stapler and 3/8" staples, I simply covered the seats in some gorgeous $125/yard fabric. Our designers often have good size scraps and samples left over from jobs and I have a good selection for a bargain thanks to them. We've stretched some of the more spectacular pieces and created wall art, used smaller pieces to make ugly dolls with kids and covered many a pillow. I've even been repairing my ripped up jeans. Vintage marimekko is my favorite, but this fancy stuff from Charles, now left over from covering the seats, is just right for the jeans I inherited from my sister Lia. She started this pair of jeans in the 1970's and I'm repairing her old repairs while I'm waiting for the tires to be aligned. Reminds me of that children's story Joseph and his Coat. The scraps are my salvation and constant source of inspiration

Sunday, September 27, 2009

a marriage of two parts

It usually comes together at night, my best ideas. I had time to write this all day, but how to bring together the day's medical emergency and a new table delivered to the shop late Friday? I just couldn't do it, all afternoon in the ER. I'm tired. I started in on the Sunday New York Times, reading about design and creative people. Then it hit me: that table, my husband's emergency. The gestalt: good marriages of any two things necessarily endure rough spots. Wow this is the good idea? Hang on. When it comes to design projects, Rick, my husband and I work well together. I had this great old 1940's Detroit sign advertising Christmas trees for $1 and I wanted a table made out of it. We agreed it needed to be simple but the thing was big and getting the scale and leg shape right took a few meetings. You are looking at the picture and saying huh? Yeah I know, four legs, we need meetings? Ok so we do a lot of things on the fly: I ask his opinion, ignore it, he gets irritated and forgets what I said, we start all over two weeks later, I've changed my mind, nothing is drawn still, he sorta gets what I want, weeks goes by I forget about the whole project and then suddenly it shows up in my store. I love it. This is evidence of working well? This goes for well in my book, I've done this marriage thing before ok? Yeah, I know four legs, a sign, whatever...The deal is I never get over how great I feel when I see that idea realized. I fall in love with the man, that genius, all over again. So maybe this isn't the design he would show you as evidence of his talent. But that sign was face down in the dirt. Now look at it. Speaking of in the dirt. About that emergency. Rick is allergic to bees, the deadly kind of allergic. The bees are everywhere this time of year. We had a false alarm 3 weeks ago at the country cottage 20 miles from the hospital. He decides to plant bushes amongst the wild flowers today, same country cottage. That genius. So there I am rushing to the fire station, again. But this time he's got 4 bee stings and gripping the epi pin and not yelling at me to go faster. He's looking white, I dial 911. The emergency team shows up...big beefy men in t-shirts smelling of fried bacon. They remember him from last time, the gardening enthusiast from the city. There's no mistaking the dirty wellingtons, smelling of dog shit. He's all layed out on the sidewalk. I get to explain how he can't help himself, he's on the beautification committee. Would have no clue about the sports teams on their t-shirts... What's not to love? It's good enough for me. Make that perfect.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Sabbatical dream

I should be going to bed, instead I'm up late searching for an opportunity to go on sabbatical. You know, the kind for people with no money who want to go somewhere fabulous with their kid, house sit some tuscan retreat, paris apartment, spanish hacienda...poke around for interesting objects or projects, in short not a vacation of sight seeing and shopping but of doing and learning. I mention this to my kid and pretty soon he has his class (and their parents saying) "we heard you were moving to Spain!" So I guess "we" are putting it out to the universe that we want to go on a sabbatical. I met with a marketing consultant today and discussed the need to expand my reach and the limits to my marketing ability on top of running the show, finding the stuff, designing, parenting, homemaking etc. Indicators point heavily towards the internet and my figuring out how to find more business and bring it to me. Well then if it only requires a laptop, couldn't I take my show on the road and work from a remote location, say overlooking the Seine? Is anybody around that remembered those days when we flew on $200 plane tickets to France and enjoyed 7 francs to the dollar? I could actually make money outta what I brought back in a suitcase (or 7). My travelling partner Lulu and I would write, draw and cut and paste a newsletter on the flight home, make a few phone calls et voila, instant sell out. While everything's changed, some things remain the same. I got wanderlust, some of you still want interesting stuff and a good story. How about we sleep on it, see what the universe provides..

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Digging Mondays

I use to ruin my Sundays dreading Mondays so when I had my own business guess what day I had off. Mondays are often digging days, which is the best part of my job. I go with my friend Jon who knows every square inch of Detroit and also has Mondays off. This Monday we were on a last minute hunt for the movie set of Red Dawn. They wanted 16 old woodend crates, the kind produce comes in, to make a wall-mounted shelving unit. My goal with the movie industry is to be the "go-to-girl" for off beat vintage/found things. Jon's my secret weapon and has an encyclopedic mind of cast off stuff and where it all is in the city so naturally he knew just where to find them. We headed to the Southeast side. If you ask Jon the destination is just down the street, from my point of view it was waaaayyy far away, but the drive through the city always turns up some other treasure or happening that makes for good adventure and reminds Jon of some entertaining story. I had just been turned onto the most amazingly good and cheap produce store, Randazzo's and when we cruised by one of it's locations, well we had to stop. If you didn't know, Randazzos must be one of the oldest Detroit family-owned produce sellers. The turnover of product is amazing. The set up is simple. Produce is piled up on hand-built wood tables painted green. There's stuff you've never seen or heard of like Jujube (some kind of Asian plum that's sour). The customers are from 22 countries atleast making for fantastic people watching. We both left with 2 bags full of stuff for a total of $15.00. Find out where the closest Randazzo's is and check it out. It's old world Detroit at it's best. Pays to dig.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Relationships Keep Me Going

It wasn't in the business plan, but the reality is it's relationships that have made and kept my retail operation solvent over the last 12 years and through a fair share of recessions. Take this day in the life. Starting at 9:30am last Friday my friend Jeff Newsom, social networking wizard, creative genius and all-around jump-in and get-it-done-kind-of-a-guy came over to help unload a truck. Longtime Indiana antiques dealer Amy Wheeler of Butter Beans antiques is setting up shop upstairs at The Heritage Co. and we needed a man on the job. Unloaded inside of an hour, I had a call for an emergency color consultation at 10:30am so I left her and Lisa to organize and took off with my client to choose some paint colors. Those little jobs lead to bigger ones you know, in the meantime it took the pressure off my client (and bought me lunch). Once fortified, Amy, Lisa and I got to know each other as we rearranged and admired the new wares. Shazam! The magic of fresh stock and new vignettes. That energy is a magnet and I swear as soon as you move something around, it all looks new. A designer expressed interest in a few new items so rather than wait for them to find time to come in, I took advantage of all those bodies hanging around and loaded up some choice new bits and drove them up to his office in Birmingham. 2 out of 3 ain't bad! I left with a check and headed back to the ranch. Knowing those girls would be hot and bothered from all that schlepping, I stopped for cold drinks (and appeased my guilt for getting out of the moving job). Friday afternoons are all about the regulars and they can always tell when a truck's been unloaded and the drinks are flowing. Lots of laughs, a few good design ideas hatched and the prospect of much more with our new tenant on board. It doesn't take a lot to keep me going; fun people to work and play with and a little business. Just now, that's a good thing.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Just when I thought everything good was going to be exported out of Michigan, lo and behold signs of life in Detroit! Yours truly initiated a holiday weekend save and at the ninth hour, (literally packed and on their way to market in Brimfield Massachusetts when they were whisked off to the client's home at 6:30am Sunday morning) these museum-quality architectural "porch kitties" were purchased for a private residence in Metro Detroit. Lifesize, these sheet-copper lions come with quite a story. They were originally on the front of a 1920's mansion in Stevensville, Michigan, owned by a sheriff. Not necessarily thought of as the sort of career leading to high living, this particular sheriff however just happened to live in Al Capone's cottage community. You'll make the same connections we did...According to Richard Gage, who had the lions in for repairs to split seams in their feet and tails, the lions are made in the Italian-style and likely made by Italian craftsman either in Italy and exported or the craftsmen were brought in and made them in Michigan. The lions are menacing to be sure. It's amazing to me that up close you can distinctly read anger in their eyes and this rendered in sheet metal! We didn't know until Rick had them on their backs that hidden deep in their mouths were light sockets. I can only imagine how that must have looked, with these scary big lions on the porch, their open maws blazing, Yikes! You weren't on the porch in that neighborhood without an invitation and the lions were the least of your worries. I guess it's only fitting that they ended up in Metro Detroit.

Friday, August 28, 2009

a house of salvage at TANK gallery

I'm smitten with Clint Snyder's installation at TANK (check it out on facebook TANK/425), the practical art school and gallery at my husband's studio. It's a mini house of salvage. I've always said we could build a whole house of salvage with the stuff strewn about this city and Clint's mini one is a good start. I particularly love that it was built for an artist's designed putt putt golf course in Detroit at the Caid Contemporary Art Institute of Detroit, curated by Graham White and called "Puttopia." Clint's letting me "decorate" the place and tonight he'll be unveiling it. Clint's a serious painter, in a silly clown kind of a way, and a passionate Detroiter. Rick and I have a painting I really love of his. It's of a rundown house in Hamtramck done on recycled lumber. We had to pay him in trips to Arizona and New York City with my mother (do we drive a hard bargain or what) and possibly that's why he's calling this show "taking bad ideas to necessary conclusions." I don't know, but we can all find out tonight. He's teaming up with a Roeper student and you know how smart those kids are so I think this is going to be a good one. See you at 7pm

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

A restaurant thrives in Detroit

You should have seen the smile on Dave Mancini's face as he celebrated the one year anniversary of Supino's pizzeria in Eastern Market. There he was hosting a party at the Farnsworth community garden, sharing the wealth. Already one year in and on his way to a beer and wine license yahoo! a solid following paying off that $$italian brick oven and the foundation in place for his outdoor oven at Farnsworth gardens courtesy of Molly Motor chef/gardener/ceramicist extraordinaire. I'm sure all the high five's from the diva's of food in the media didn't hurt (even yours truly got a plug or two for the Detroit found object interiors). I took the whole family down and we noshed on fresh food and veggies from the local garden/farms, drank Motor City Beer from the keg, cruised across the street to the Yes Farm theatre/gallery ( to watch a sweet 20 minute short film by Nicole MacDonald about the city and then cheered my 10-year old Wyatt on as he played soccer on the vacant lot adjacent. This is how community should be: block parties, all ages, potluck of healthy food and people playing a game together. The suburbs should take a page outta of this handbook.

Thursday, August 13, 2009


It's always fun to hunt for pieces for "theme interiors." Longtime customer Rafat Mandwee and his brothers are opening an Arabic restaurant and lounge in Kalamazoo by their wine/convenience store called Tiffany's (it's also right by the original Heritage Company). The name Zooroona means "visit us" in Arabic and the goal is to create an interior that evokes a typical middle eastern cafe'. We took advantage of the competitively priced, locally sourced salvage that both Heritage Companies supply and mixed warm rustic pieces with new materials in sun-baked colors of the region. Raf recently had me over to his house for an authentic Iraqi breakfast to go over our shopping list. I loved the sweet cardamom tea, the warm bread with a fresh farm-type cheese and honey. He, my husband and I had worked on this house and his jewelry store together years ago. He loves to entertain in a style typical to his culture so out went the traditional living room and in went sitting cushions on the floor with low tables. A baptismal font I'd salvaged from a church became an altar with fountain. A beautiful old picture of his now deceased father hangs above it and he looks every bit the beloved head of a large Iraqi family. A lucky find of mosque windows were turned into table tops, an old rug was cut up and "framed" in an oak church railing. The earthy colors throughout, traditional textiles, painted and worn woods, old glass tiles and lace metal work we selected provide just the right backdrop for hosting Raf's multi-ethnic friends. One typical evening, my husband and I met people from Egypt, Lebanon and Iraq. Raf provides these beautiful leather Morrocan slippers we put on the minute we arrived, leaving our shoes at the door. It was a kick smoking the fruity tobaccos in the beautiful Nargila (means hookah). These and the delicate glass tea cups he serves his tea in will be sold in a retail area of the new restaurant. Raf has a gift for hosting and entertaining and he's a great ambassador for all things Middle Eastern. His attention to authentic detail and design flair will create just the right ambience and I predict Zooroona will be a favorite hangout in Kalamazoo. Look for it to open this fall and say "merhaba" (hello) when you see the brothers Raf, Saad, Habib, Talat.

Living and Loving the Local

Just a few more reasons to love our local riches....The other night downtown Royal Oak hosted a "kid's cruise" in tandem with the Dream Cruise where millions of folks line Woodward Avenue to watch vintage cars cruise by. Only a 6-block bike ride and our family was downtown for fun and games in the parking lot across Main Street from my shop. Wyatt, a budding musician, was keen on the kid's rock bands playing on an outdoor stage. Then we spread a blanket in the parking lot and watched a movie, Hotel for Dogs, on the big screen. How cool is that? All for free too.

How about finding good local places to eat, where you know you are a supporting a local family or families, and the food is good, fresh and your kid likes it too! Here's Wyatt and I (he's the little imp far left side with the smiley face on his cheek) in the very tiny, very cool and inexpensive, Noble Fish sushi counter within the Japanese grocery store of the same name. It's right on 14 Mile Road near Main Street in Clawson. Lunch is served until 2:30 then they close and reopen just before dinner. Free green tea! Great sushi, and wyatt gives the japanese candy by the check out a thumbs up.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Hurray for Hollywood

Nothing but glamour and glitz at the heritage company. Yes hollywood has discovered me and would you believe, my stuff isn't grungy enough for them? Finally, my people have come to claim me!! Am now scrounging the city for more rusty, bombed out metal objects for the movie Red Dawn. In the meantime, set designers are calling for objects for the Little Murder set. Stay tuned for star turns etc. .

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Summer's Salvage Bounty

So often you drive to East Jesus and find nothing. That was my June effort, going to all of these shows and turning up so little I could get excited about and blowing my weekends in the process. The salvage gods must have been sick of my bitching or decided it was my turn to have the big score. I found so much cool stuff this month, I'm pinching myself. It's exactly the kind of thing I want to be known for; big, outrageous, cartoonish bits of Americana. If you haven't been in the store lately, now's the time to check it out. I promise it's not what everybody else has!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Went Fishing, Caught a Whopper

And man do I have the bruises and sore muscles to prove it....Hit the motherlode of giant stuff and had a major Koons/Oldenburg moment. The pike is 14', had to be forklifted onto a 24'truck to squeeze in with a 300 lb.neon sign, carnival ride (the octopus for you carnie fans), checker cab door (new york drivers), deco candies' sign, 4' church window, an 8' tree root (don't ask, someone had to have it...)and gilda the put-together cow head with red lights for eye plus plus plus. The store is so jammed, the fish is outside. Don't miss this crazy collection, run don't walk, to the heritage company.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Food Foraging, the Picking is Easy

The salvage slave is famous for her yummy meals cobbled together with leftovers and what she can snag from the great outdoors. When funds are scarce you can still eat well, but you need to think creatively. Believe it or not there is free food to be had fresh and abundant if you just know where to look. I'm not talking about dumpsters and handouts or garden theft, I'm talking live food growing all around the city yours for the picking. Last week's heat in Detroit ripened all the mulberries growing on this commonly thought of "weed" tree and they are abundant. My son Wyatt and his pal Marlaina visited our friend Danielle who took us on a tour of mulberry and cherry picking in downtown Detroit! Look for the tell tale stains on the sidewalks and little dark or pale lilac raspberry-looking berries on this 10' and taller tree. I even have a tree that volunteered in the backyard at my shop. Sweet and plentiful, make some wine, toss it in a salad with kiwis, salad greens and citrus vinagrette or go all out like I did and whip up an elegant dessert. I made pavlova, an easy meringue cake layered with whipping cream and berries, it was a big hit with my dinner companions. Just the other morning I spotted numerous cherry trees bearing fruit on Woodward in Huntington Woods in front of the apartment buildings at Lincoln, almost over but still some ready to eat. Raspberries and blackberries should be on too, look for that thorny vine-like shrub at the tree line of city parks. On the savory side, there are onions and chives galore and mint. I picked some by the railroad tracks at 11mile and Washington here in Royal Oak. The grapevines have taken over the backyard at my shop, so when you want to make grape leaves just come on by and pick for free. When you have to spend money, hit the local farmer's markets sprouting everywhere. Other than Royal Oak and Eastern Market, try the one in Birmingham or Warren. There's even one Wednesday's on Wayne State Campus north of Warren on Cass. There are many others, has an online guide and you can head out with your reusable bag. Shop local, splurge on organic, see the movie Food Inc. As my friends at Avalon say "Eat Well, Do Good"

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Run, walk, bike the Dequindre Cut is Open!

Dang what a sweet urban happening of healthiness we've now got in Detroit my friends and I am making it my personal mission to get everybody down to the Dequindre cut for a little excercise. What is the cut? Why it's a below grade mile expanse (so far, but dreams are to have it run into the suburbs) of old rail line that starts at Gratiot right by Eastern Market, and goes to the river. It just so happens to tie up with the very beautiful Riverwalk, which runs east onto Belle Isle and Hart Plaza running west. This new cut's got the funk going for it in this green reclamation thing. Cause this bike path (or the first completed mile anyhow) is a moving, changing art form with concrete embankments lining the path covered in the best graffiti. Last Friday morning at 9am people were out biking and walking or running. Spring is resplendent in native plants and the Detroit River sparkles at the base of the path. I made the trip down with the pool club (hard-core middle-aged broads I swim with at the YMCA) so we’re here for the work out. We made about a 10 mile ride out of this excursion so from the cut we hook up to the River Walk and head east to Belle Isle. Now in some places the river interrupts the path, so you gotta wind back to the old brick streets which I love with the ancient brick structures that were once home to a thriving music and club scene. In my mind’s eye I see them vibrant again with entertainment, dining, living, retail and art. We circle the perimeter of Belle Isle, riding through a meadow that would make you think you were in the country, and out to the lighthouse point and a spectacular view of the mouth of Lake St. Clair. Riding back, we cross the restored bridge and admire the beautiful view of the Downtown skyline, and the prominent homes of GM and the UAW. Something about their dire circumstances, the evidence all around us of the city we built to transport a nation, and with all that hanging in the balance here’s this sweet homegrown effort to bring beauty and health to a troubled city. Well it sure gives you pause. Shoot, it’s our very own version of the Seine River in Paris; lots of bright new benches and places to meditate along the river, people fishing, pavilions with tables and chairs even those stainless high-tech automated self-cleaning bathrooms that talk to you about how clean and cool they are. We ride back to our parked cars in the Eastern Market and the trucks are moving produce and meat in and out, RJ Hirt is bringing out their garden wares next to the gleaming newly refurbished sheds. And I think, hey it’s a living breathing thing this city, and we want to keep it healthy. See you there tomorrow. I'm riding with a new posse, hope we see you there.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Dyeing in Detroit

I know you think I'm going to talk about the automakers. Althought I'm all for salvaging them too, I'm talking about closet salvage i.e. reinvigorating your existing wardrobe with some super yummy dyes that are fun and easy to use. I go through this every spring when I pull out the summer wardrobe. I'm sick of everything, want to change the color of something or it's all faded and looks tired. I hate to shop and it certainly isn't in the budget to chuck it all and buy new, besides I can't bear to throw out some perfectly good clothes! It's become a bit of a family tradition, my mom use to teach art and has been dyeing stuff with kids since I was one. It's one of the things I love to do when I go home or when she comes here. Plus, it's more fun to do it with someone because there's a lot of waiting time while you're stirring and dyeing. Now I'm no expert, I stick with just the natural fabrics (cotton stuff, some linen and silk) but the folks at have products for everything and lots of information and tips. It's always experimental, you never know what you're going to get but I like the fact it's a little mottled because I think it gives it a more artsy sophistication. Dharma dyes are more expensive than the old RIT stuff, but lots more colors. You'll need salt and soda ash which I found at the local pool supply store and I used my sister's top loading washing machine. You can do it in a bucket but all that stirring is a bit much for as much stuff as I had to do. I should have photographed these items before I dyed them, but look how beautiful they look on the line! Total cost for one duvet cover, 2 shams, 2 skirts, table cloth, runner and top $20.

Monday, June 1, 2009

A Sculpture Grows in Detroit

Here’s a clear case of beauty or art being in the eyes of the beholder. If my dad saw this “sculpture,” he’d shake his head and say “sista, now Blue Boy (by Gainsborough) that’s a work of art (and this belongs in the garbage).” Clearly, I didn’t get my taste (or lack there of) from him. This is the sort of thing our expert eyes are trained on in the motorcity. We see an at least 40-year-old tree stump that has grown through an old Montgomery Ward bike left amongst the burned out remains of a house and we say, “now that’s a work of art.” Mount it to a metal base, boom it’s sculpture and front and center in my booth at the Michigan Modernism show. Sure enough it’s a show stopper, and everyone wants to marvel and bring others around to see the miracle of the tree grown through the stump. (So much so that once it sold, I had to get it out because they weren’t looking at anything else.) Keen folk art dealers and long-time buyers of mine scoop it up for a very serious show in New York where discerning buyers await. Meanwhile, there’s a little fuss don’t you know cause that old wood sitting there all those years got a little punky and we had to make it solid-like. But it wasn’t til it got nice and warm some weeks later in my buddy bob’s van that the gestation of a gazillion bugs took place. All I could say was thank God it wasn’t in a fancy collector’s house. Confined in Bob’s van, all he had to do was scream, then get a bug bomb in the van and it’s good to go!. Once in New York, clearly it took on greater importance and it’s virtues enhanced. They were fighting over it I’ll have you know and who knows what private deal has again been made in the name of art. So go on dad, trash Detroit and it’s relics all you want, but they are paying some serious attention to our detritus in Gotham City!

Monday, May 18, 2009

show up

You know that new age nomenclature "show up"that means "being present?" As in, yeah it's a real drag being me in this dead retail economy, but I still gotta show up. So I showed up at the Ann Arbor/Saline antiques market show. No, I did not show at the show, I just shopped the show and you should too. Show-nough, the drive out there this time of year is just beautiful, especially after the rain. And,even though it's a small show these days, good stuff still shows up and there's a cadre of seasoned dealers who are the best at what they know and do. It's about shopping carefully. If you shop with care, you'll see that a well-placed question gets you a free education, makes a connection with a real professional who provides a valuable service. When you are ready to buy, you'll have a better idea of an item's worth and chances are you'll have made a real investment, including the one in a real live human being. I purchased a unique table from Sal Palmer. I found out he gets lots of things I'm interested in and he's willing to deliver it to my shop in Royal Oak, how very nice and helpful. Bonus for him is I'll shop with him again. Show's the third weekend of every month now through october

A little sleeper side trek I like to make is to Jean and Judy's barn sale. It's just down the road and they have it the same weekend as the show. I felt like I was in a martha stewart story. Beautiful old barn, kinda down around the ears, Jean and Judy sitting at the table with a big pot of good coffee, a mixed up collection of mugs and a tray of home baked goods. First off, I always look for the best mug, which you get to keep, pay my 50cents and then peruse the collection while I drink it. This trip, I bought a terrific Indian jacket and wore it all day and night. Now I'm hungry, another 50cents and it's a delicious banana bran nut raisin muffin. Tell me where you are going to get more for your buck? Plus, we had a nice chat about Ann Arbor in the 70's, selling art in the diag and getting to go to school there (single best thing my parents and I ever bought me).

Gosh, since I'm already in Ann Arbor and it's saturday, there's a couple other favorite stops I like to make. I splurge and go to Morgan & York on Packard. It's in an old packaged liquor store. They sell the best of everything, wine, beer, pastries (from Japon bakery-authentic french croissants melt in your mouth) olive oil bar (you sample and dispense your own, euro style), bread (avalon) cheese, chocolates, deli etc. I had a $10 blt that blew my mind. Made on an avalon baguette, a fiesta in my mouth, worth every penny. Left owner Tom with some samples of my friend Mark Smutek's coffee/tea/hot cocoa from Kalamazoo, water street coffee joint, maybe they'll carry it.

Last stop is the farmer's market at Kerry Town. I'm gonna get me a new bumper sticker: I stop for farmer's markets. It's a favorite thing to do when I visit any town because they are all unique. I love to see the colors of food and hand-crafts, the people and their kids and pets. Ann Arbor's market is small and full of educated hippie-types, they have lots of obscure plants and the food is organic, top notch. Then, since it's in the parking lot of Kerry Town, you get the added bonus of more interesting shopping. This is a mall that is the anti-mall: killer market and food stalls inside and two stores I love and have shopped for years: Vintage to Vogue and Found. Clothes are a guilty pleasure I rarely indulge and Found sells stuff made with found objects, always good inspiration for me. Newer yummy stores are Everyday Wine, the spice shop and the kids' store, too bad that kid of mine got big. If I were really indulging, I'd hang around and have a gourmet dinner at Eve, but tonight's the Tank opening and Rick and I are the hosts! More on that next time, I need a nap first...

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Postcards from Detroit

Every now and again you fall in love with something that you just have to have, budgets be damned. A painting hanging in our living room by Stephen Magsig is one of those things. Now may not be the time to invest in one of these glorious larger works, but you can own one of his “postcards” for $100. I just so happened to be at his and his partner (a fine artist in her own right) Janet Hamrick’s garage sale last Saturday in Ferndale and got to talking with them about art, Detroit and the future. Stephen walked me back through their garden to his beautiful studio in the garage he converted and showed me these little jewels. He has made the painting of these postcards a daily ritual and sold many of the 600 he’s already painted. Wisely, he captured many of these iconic Detroit images in two books he has published (which I hope to make available at my shop) called Postcards from Detroit. Log onto his blog to see the postcard paintings still available or to buy a book. To see his larger works, take a ride to the David Klein gallery in Birmingham. Should you fall in love, Detroiters, remember an investment in Detroit art, its artists and the courageous local galleries supporting them is ultimately an investment in yourself.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Running Off to Join the Circus

Every now and again a sale makes me say, "now there's a good story." Just this past Monday I sold a rickshaw to a couple running off to join the circus...for real...Check out Andy and his girlfriend, Sea Jae (CJ) of the Detroit Circus and Players Guild, proud new owners of this Heritage Co. special. He does a trick with fire at the end of a rope he whips around. She turns a hoola hoop. They're off to South Carolina next week to join up with The Inner Circus down there. How the rickshaw will work into the act, I can't say, but I can sure see the possibilities. They could too, despite the quirky mechanics (the bike was clearly rigged up and handmade). Sea Jae's dad said, "well, will it make you any money?" I don't know about you, but as investments go these days, I'm betting on youth and the rastafarian rickshaw act. Shoot who wouldn't pay for this hunk to wheel their butt around in this showstopper? It's like it's own carnival ride. Speaking of carnival rides, I bought it a while ago from some drunk guys who were drinking through a 30-pack of pabst at the picnic table, with their pit bull chained to the top and barking like he meant to kill me, in some back lot in Southwest Detroit. Of course I had back up, come on I'm a suburban mom remember? My buddy who rescues animals for a living is the one who spotted it there in the first place and called me on the "salvage hotline" to meet him there. It was quite the traffic stopper, driving with it strapped to my husband's beat up old pick-up. Here's the karmic kicker; on our way home we drove the city streets, not trusting this load to highway speeds. Our spirits were high as the latest best-ever find was now in our possession. We passed some school carnival on the way home and pulled off for a corn dog and a ride on the tilt-a-whirl. Isn't that some kind of freaky foreshadowing? I told you it was a good story. Always something of interest on the streets of Detroit...stay tuned

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Industrious Detroit

OK so maybe I'm not committing retail suicide by clearing out all the inventory at The Heritage Company II that doesn't cleave to my vision of what I find artful in the salvage of industrial Detroit. I just read in this Sunday's New York Times Style section that design leader Andy Spade has a new spot in Manhattan called Partners&Spade that is doing the very same thing: marrying gallery and shop with "oddball" items like old work gloves (have you seen my collection?) and "art objects" (look for a future posting of the tree growing through a bike we just sold) embraced as the "relics of our time." Despite a disappointing response to the 2009 Michigan Modernism show, the booth I "curated" did what I haven't been able to do (to my satisfaction) in the store. So I'm going to quit being a chicken and cluttering up my store and recreate the feeling I had in that booth. I'm newly focused on collecting and designing objects that specifically say, "isn't industry beautiful?" and "wow, was that designed/found/made in Detroit?" and displaying it with a curatorial eye instead of a flea market mishmash. Not that I don't love flea markets, just that the one 4 blocks away does it so well why would I want to compete? The dust is just now starting to clear, in the store that is, so come see our spring 2009 collection of Detroit cool and take pride in being a Detroiter. While you're at it, bargain shop upstairs where everything is atleast half off.
We know the future will look very different with a severly diminshed automotive industry, but for heaven's sake, take a little pride in the artistry, genius and glory of it's past, and help me save it, make that, flaunt it.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

March 14, 2009

Aren't you so sick and tired of all the negativity in the world? Even though the president said we can shop again, people are still reluctant to go. I don't get it. I know you lost your job and all, but just take your extended unemployment benefits and, like he said, be a saver. Not to the banks, you lemmings, he's talking about saving with Costco! I know, I know, some blogs ago I said the big box stores are the enemy of towns and small businesses like mine, but that was before this financial bomb dropped on me. Oh I went through all the stages of grief, but I'm a problem-solving American after all. So that's why I've decided to cut bait on all my debts. I mean what fools have we been for trusting those suits at the bank and their full-priced mortgages? We should have been getting kick-backs like those money-grubbing execs. Costco has kick-backs for all its members you know, and that's after they've discounted everything to save you money. The president should have asked Costco to save the financial system. He likely did, but I bet Costco brass said, "Forget about it, what do we want with you losers? This is a member's only club and we're helping our customers who know how to save real money!" And, so after practical consideration, I've decided to move out of my house and into my neighborhood Costco. Goodbye corporate thieves, politicians, famine, war and darkness, hello bargains and bright lights!

I know it sounds like I've lost my mind. But before you write me off, hear me out. This journey from skeptic, to closet membership, to lifetime Costconian is one you would do well to undertake. Like my fellow community activist-types, I too was snooty about Costco in the beginning. After all, the openings of all these big box stores were homogenizing America and forcing small businesses like mine out of business while killing towns. But, quietly like many of you, I found myself buying the mondo bags of toilet paper I had no place to store and the 5# bags of breaded chicken my son lives on. And then, I moved on to other bargains at Costco. I would eventually learn what a novice I still was to the serious shopping I've since uncovered. There I was stocking up on wine and liquor in the far back corner, when I spied mattresses on the back wall. Lo and behold Sealy mattresses and at such a good price! It just so happened that my client was in the market for mattresses for her kids' beds. I made the call and switched out for the flatbed cart. Maybe you found the mattresses too, but did you know that further down that far back wall they sell caskets? That's right, caskets and a selection at that.

It was like God himself sent a thunderbolt down (or maybe one of those giant bulbs blew out over my head), Of course, independent stores everywhere are closing! But I ask you, do you really want to go to some dreary old victorian furneral home with the smiling Lurch ready to steal your meager savings? Drag yorself through the scene with your sobbing family all itchiing to get to the will reading? I say skip the grief, get to a brightly lit Costco and order one up while you are already there for tires and tampons. Why shop for anything anywhere else? It's so much easier, cheaper and morally superior to simply shop under one roof. Then there's the percentage you can earn back at the end of a year of shopping if you sign on for the Executive Membership. The smiling attendant walking around with her computer scanner winked knowingly at me when she saw the mattresses, "Just think how many points you can earn on an Executive Membership!" Of course I signed right up for that. Sure it costs extra, but with all this money I'm spending and saving, I'll quickly get it back and maybe more. It's like money in the bank without the cheating banks! And so as I stood in the mile-long line for what would be the last time, I realized I could live my whole life out in costco, exiting only to go to that final resting place and resplendant in the casket of my choosing: pearl greay with lavender lining, please.

Yep, it's womb to tomb at Costco for you and me. You come in all pink and tiny, snuggled in the car seat pre-purchased, the one that clips out and onto the shopping cart, while you await easy assembly of your crib. The diapers, wipes and baby formula will be wheeled over momentarily while dad fetches that nice genuine oak rocker, a cozy fleece blanket and some nursery rhymes to read to you. The noise of Saturday shoppers and bright lights will become like white noise and soon enough, you'll be blowing ou the candles yourself on the big sheet cake with lots of that thick frosting you love. everyone will be gathered at the lunchroom tables, dad blowing up the hellium balloons himself from the little throwaway tank. You're a big boy now. No more crib for you ! That huge box is the kidddie car bed from the movie you love and now when you wake up, you can toddle by yourself over to the toy setion. Still too little to make it to the back of the store where the backyard playsets are? You'll have to thumb a ride in one of those battey-operated kiddie cars. Some day you'll be able to ride over on a big bike like the older kids. Moms says keep eating those dinosaur nuggets and you'll be a big boy before long. Well you are big actually, for the kids' clothes that is, but mom's says that's just because you're big-boned. Beg mom for a trip down junk food aisle and ride, don't walk. Head next to the coolers for the gallon tub of ice cream and mix some candy in it. Glide back over to that comfy Sealy mattress. Sack out with yor snack while you stare bug-eyed at the sea of televisions going constantly. This is the life! Pick from the miles of DVD's and complain when mom insists on the occasional educational one.

Is she still talking? Turn up the Ipod you scored in electronics and drown that nag out. Get to some serious chillaxin with your buddies on the sectionals that just came in. Maybe later, you and your homies can get a band together on those imported keyboards, guitars and drum sets. But just now, your growing body is starved. It's such a drag waiting for the cheesy pizza bites and buffalo wings to come out of those easy-bake sampler's ovens. If it wasn't for the gestapo attendants controlling them, you could really throw some chow down. Meanwhile, when no one's looking, scale the fence to snatch some smokes while sizing up the suckers over 21 to score you and your pals some liquor. Ouch, maybe the Jagerbombs don't really go with the 80-pack of mini cream puffs with real whipping cream. Better get a quick cart-ride to the johns. So what if the whole store heard you hurling? Let's just hope you didn't get anything on that ladies' magazine you stashed, if you know what I mean.

Speaking of the ladies? Bro you look fly in those high-end designer sunglasses from optometry (good thing because all your clothes are that lame store-brand). Never mind, wait till she sees you pour that Dom Perignon into the crystal champagne flutes (you're sure stealth with that knock-off pocketknife and the locked display cabinet). Now for a selection of hors d'ouevers before you fire up the grill for a lobster and filet dinner, all candlelit on the trellis-covered patio set.

Where has the time gone? Strolling the aisles arm and arm, you and the Mrs. have landed. There you are working with the in-house design pros on some custom blinds, carpeting and setting up your home office. With all the money you are saving, living and working out of your well-appointed digs, some day you'll be able to take one of those vacations you've read about over by Membership Services. It doesn't get better than this! That is until your eyes start to go. At first, you think fatigue from all that metal hallide lighting. Nevermind, just get over to optometry for some glasses. Now you're feeling achy? Maybe you just over did it demoing the treadmills. Lie down and take a pill. There's plenty over in the pharmacy. Wash it down with some fine, single malt scotch from the back. You'll feel better in no time. Wow that stuff is smooth, pour yourself another. It's not like you have anywhere to go.

Is it your fault that you're hooked and can't get around anymore without the motorized wheel chair? In fact why get out of bed at all? All the wife does is nag and complain anyway. Just get one of those young stock boys to bring some snacks by, that and your pills, booze and the big bag of adult diapers. When you come to , there will be some more television to enjoy. The days all look alike anyway.

Only the terrible smell will clue the staff that in fact, a little light did go out, but they won't need the big ladder for this one. It's a job for the pine flakes from maintenance and a forklift to get the casket down. Thank goodness for the stock boys. The wife's too distraught to take care of you herself (well that and your terrible timing in the middle of Oprah). Even though there's no nice suit to dress you in, everyone said how you looked at peace, dressed in the store-brand clothes you always favored. Your wife will wail about the vacation you always talked about but could never get around to taking, so comfortable were you at Costco. The staff did such a nice job of printing and assembling the hundreds of photo albums they diligently put together all those years. Everyone balled at the slide show of pictures streaming across all those televisions. You can tell how loved you were by the amazing nmber of roses surrounding you. They're two dozen for the price of one in the outside world. Of course, you never priced them yourself, because you couldn't get past the guards at the door demanding the receipt you could never produce. It's only in death, waiting on the forklift at the loading dock for the trucks to pull in and haul your cost-saved carcass out, that you will see the light of day. Just in time to enjoy a strange phenomenon, the sun setting.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

February 26, 2009

Perhaps I was born guilty. But doesn't it give you a start when a "uniform" comes to the door? The last time the railroad officials came into the shop some genius had parked 3 feet from the tracks out front. The train cars however are significantly wider than the tracks (duh) so when the mile long train came a-hauling cars and coals, KABOOM!!! It struck this jeep AND THE PASSENGER SITTING IN IT and drug it about 30 feet before they could stop the train. The freaked out rider walked away from the heap, but what a feeling!!! It sounded like a bomb went off and I was glad it wasn't one of my customers. I was pleasantly surprised that today's visit was simply about salvage. How nice is this? They are taking down all the telephone poles in town and the CN guys had carefully selected the unblemished insulators for me. I came out with a bucket, and looked up at the HUNDREDS of insulators still to come and made two trips to bring the ones they had taken down in. I spied the long lengths of 2 inch cable wrapped with copper wire and strapping which was going into a dumpster, and grabbed my bolt cutters. At 6# per foot, it was a back breaker unspooling it and lugging it to my backyard. I love how the strapping looks all jumbled up and thought how cool it would be in a giant bowl. I have an idea to take the cable and insulators and make some kind of light fixture with it. I also thought to design a very simple steel holder to stick into the ground and hold an insulator upside down with a votive candle in it for a pretty garden light. The teal glass is beautiful illuminated. Got a better idea? Let me know or come on in and get some of your own to play with. I just love roadside, or in this case, railroadside, junk....

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

February 3, 2009

Did the ground hog see his shadow? Seems like everyday around here lately is ground hog day. All January I thought, the yesterdays looked like the tomorrows and wore the same clothes everyday. Damn but it was cold, my heating bills look like mortgages. But hey the sun was shining today and it was over 20 so I washed the car and in Detroit, that's a good day. Took a drive through the country and picked up "eddie" (name he came with),this 1920's Ambercrombie and Fitch rhino that looks strangely like my dog. Hey it's a crisis, and Eddie needs a good home. Word from Washington is we've got to shop a little, just don't spend the fund under the mattress. I say Eddie is as solid an investment as Citigroup and he'll look good in the living room. Funny thing, I'm actually doing some business in Detroit and our fabulous former mayor may get hired away to Texas, things are looking up. The industrial stuff is looking hot and I've hunted up some choice pieces. I sold giant foundry bellows to my favorite forward thinking designer Ron Rea, he's got it hanging in a restaurant. A handsome young couple is gutting an old house in upscale Birmingham and boldly going industrial with it. And well everyday people are just out and buying interesting things to feather their nests since it looks like they're going to be in the same ones for awhile. I'm cutting back on over-priced martinis to fund my purchases, you give up the french manicures and I'll see you at the flea market.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

January 2009

By now you are on a budget and thinking what else can you put on ebay to get through this winter. Well maybe that’s just me talking out loud. Christmas was a financial bust and as they say, baby needs new shoes. Too panicked to sit at a computer and do something easy, I loaded up my truck and a borrowed trailer after New Year’s and I hauled Detroit to Atlanta. Turns out the recession beat me there. But, the show must go on and antique dealers on the road put carnies to shame. Let’s just say it’s a work hard, play hard group and do we know how to have a good time. First there was the boon doggle of a free four-night’s stay in the presidential suite my gal pal won in the hotel’s drawing. Instant party, just add roadies. I am forever mentally compiling footage for a documentary, and this scenario was no exception. The people drawn to this business are usually somehow unfit for the office. Smart, crazy, definitely not conventional, these are fascinating characters that may look rough, but know more about some obscure era of craft than you do. Put them with other people just like them and you cannot imagine the cinema that ensues. It’s always Homer’s Odyssey. First there’s the trip there, always harrowing, if not equipment malfunctions then it’s freak weather, everybody’s sleep deprived and on edge by the time they pull in. Then there’s the set-up, sketchy porters, some sober some not, with no sense of urgency to unpack but manage to break your things anyway. There’s the hot item everyone is hovering around that you wish you had 10 of. And the heavy stuff no one is looking at that you wish you’d left behind. Next it’s time for the pricing game, more mystical than practical. Oh sure you paid x for it, there may be some precedent, but there’s always some nuance of condition, a round not square nail, a questionable signature and so on. You’re either over zealous and price it too high or you aim low and the hawks are circling for the kill. You then spend the rest of the show holding that once hot item that’s now garbage you can’t give away or you’re calculating a growing pile of money that would have been yours if you’d only stuck to your guns. At the end of the day you count your spoils and maybe some treasure you think you stole. Coming from Detroit, it was just nice to shed a few layers and enjoy the sun when it finally came. Luckily, I sold some things, I bought some things, packed it up and got back on the road.

Naturally there was an ice storm on the way but rather than do a 360 (last year’s trick) I wisely pulled off and called it a night. I arrived home in time to unload between snow storms and before a severe temperature drop. I don’t know what it is, but somehow people know when you have just arrived with something fresh. The bigger the mess, the more they love it and if it’s a day you are normally closed, here they come. I’ll get it organized and display it just so, but the aura will have dimmed somehow and chances are they will have preferred to shop when and where it got dropped. Always, it’s the thrill of the hunt and the thirst for a fresh kill.