Alrighty, so, fast forward a few days… We had a Tag Sale last weekend. That’s what the kids call it up here… which is good because we don’t have a (1) Garage or a (2) Yard… so (3) Tag Sale suffices! It was a lot of work to put the sale together but a piece of cake compared to the all-out Estate Sale To End All Estate Sales that we pulled off this past summer in Pacific Heights in San Francisco. Think 93-year old gay man with an affinity for lions, smoking, and art by an obscure Chicagoan named RR Benda. This, on the other hand? This was nothing. Slap a few price tags on a mish-mash of office furniture we can’t wait to see leave — building materials we’d already managed to dislodge — and our own assortment of overflow (remember, there were boxes I hadn’t seen the bottoms of since December 2011!) — and call it a day!
Or… well, most of it is now on Craig’s List.
… And we’re debating moving it to the “Free” section.
Hmmmm…. Things don’t sell so quickly when you aren’t in expensive San Francisco with 840,000 people. Must keep this in mind for future business development. …Anyway!
In good news (there is always good news!), we did actually sell a lot. It’s surprising how much money can be made without making a dent in the stock. And we’ve got a plan for the rest. In the meantime, we met a lot of wonderful people — our first real chance to try out our business ideas on the unsuspecting public. People were SO receptive! One young woman got so excited she just stood there with a huge smile on her face, saying over and over again “I’m so glad I met you. I feel like we were supposed to meet.” And then she offered to help us bring the project to life — “and I don’t want to get paid. I just want to learn.” Ah, the eager innocence of youth!
All in all, our many discussions with people passing through our Tag Sale confirmed our suspicions. Northampton needs an art and event space. For all the art oozing out of the pores of Western Massachusetts, there isn’t a great container for it. It spills and sloshes around the corners of the town, leaking into the sink of East Hampton, finding a stranglehold in the straight, white walls of Art Galleries and tucking itself into the eclectic and disorganized mind of that eager, innocent student — turned determined but directionless young person — turned middle age “I’ve got this great idea for ART” artist (with a second job). And – oh yeah – that amalgamated person loves herself (our majority!) a good cappuccino or cold-pressed juice while contemplating this here A–R–T.
One person we met expressed his desire to push back against the oppressive gentrification of Northampton, a town that insists on catering to tourists in a bucket full of students and locals. The cafes are polite. The stores are general. And there isn’t anywhere to collect, to push, to question, and to explore the unusual… the, dare I say, curiosities of our culture.
Just wait 5 months, my good sir. We are coming!