This was previously printed under the Yard Sale Capers page, and am reposting for your reading pleasure.
How to Sell A Lamp
A bunch of years ago (1975-ish), I had a yard sale with my mom. We had loads of good MCM (Mid-Century Modern) stuff including two really big table lamps with shades. The lamps had tipped over on the lawn, and one lady went to look at the lamps, and noticed the neighbors’ cat asleep inside the lampshade. The lady freaked out and said how much the cat reminded her of her cat that had just died … she picked him up and he PURRED! She wouldn’t put him down, and she started to cry. She kept going on and on about how the cat reminded her of “Fluffy.” (It was at that point that the little evil devil sitting on my left shoulder proposed a dastardly plan.)
Now, that cat and I had a history — he belonged to our next door neighbor and was constantly attacking our cat. He would climb up and walk across the pool screen enclosure, sometimes ripping the screens, or falling through them into the pool. He also liked to pee anywhere near or on my car. If you can imagine, South Florida heat + cat pee = stinky everything, then you get the idea. That cat did not hold a warm spot in my heart. I asked the nice lady if she wanted to take the cat home with her, and she looked at me like I had told her she won the lottery. She was so happy! She loaded the cat up in the car so fast it made my head spin! She came back for the lamps, and tried to give me $10 for the cat. I wouldn’t take her money. I told her how happy we would be to see that the “New Fluffy’ was going to such a wonderful home.
It all happened so fast. My mom came over to me and when I told her what I had done, I thought she was going to kill me. It was at that point that I realized my mom was trying not to laugh. If I remember correctly, she paid $20 for the two lamps. The last we saw of “Nice Lady and New Fluffy” was when the white car pulled away from the house, with “New Fluffy” sitting on Lady’s lap looking like a Cheshire Cat!
The sad thing about this whole story — the neighbor whose cat it was didn’t realize it was missing for weeks, and never made an effort to try and find “Fluffy.” They moved a few years later, and the people that moved in had a German Shepherd that would rush me at the fence, fangs showing and slobber flinging. Kind of made it difficult to sneak into the house after curfew, but I eventually won “Mr. Nasty Dog” over with some Milk Bones.