This little piggy went to market…and left sadly disappointed.

Well, here I am, the last day in the condo. Tomorrow (well, today, since I’m writing this a day early, as I do, because I am PREPARED) we check out of here, get a hotel closer to the airport, and then Sunday mid-afternoon my plane whisks me back to real life. Blergh. This week’s gone by really quickly. I’ll be glad to be home, but I have enjoyed taking a break.

Much, much theater when I get home. Monday and Tuesday night: auditions for Twelfth Night, our first show of the new season. Potential read-throughs for the one-acts I’m stage managing later in the week. Seeing a play possibly Wednesday; seeing another play Saturday; house managing at my theater Sunday. Aren’t I just the most fancy? Mostly I’ll just be the most tired. And poor Dumbcat, who will be so excited to see me but I’ll never be home to see him. Aw, Dumbcat.

Today, we went to the SIXTH BEST FLEA MARKET IN THE WORLD, according to the brochure my dad brought home. Some research tells me that this was judged by the Travel Channel. I don’t recommend clicking on the link and trying to read about my flea market, though, because there’s something wrong with the text under my flea market and it’s just a repeat of the text under the flea market above it. Way to go, Travel Channel.

Anyway, here’s the website. On their website they say they’re one of the top FIVE in the country. Well, make up your MIND, flea market. Sheesh.

I was very excited about the flea market. I had GRAND PLANS. I was going to buy ALL THE THINGS. All the things = nail polish, books, jewelry, many turtle-related things, and anything else that struck my fancy. Oh, and look at all the tea for Ken. Dad said it was huge and we could walk around all day and STILL not see all the things and I’d want to buy a million things and have the best time.

We got to the flea market and it was huge. He was right. And it was right next to the Daytona Speedway. You know, in case I wanted to see car racing! (Spoiler alert: I didn’t.)

OK, you know how I can’t read maps? This place was totally a maze. And there was a map, only…well, I can’t read maps, really. I mean, I always try. I try REALLY HARD. But I think it’s kind of like a person who’s dyslexic trying to read. It just doesn’t work. It all turns around in my head and becomes squiggly lines and such. It’s a nightmare.

Oh, shit, look, it’s a THING, I have a THING. I have developmental topographical disorientation! Ok, no, not really, the article says probably I just have a poor sense of direction. But I like to pretend things are worse than they are, so I’m going to of course pretend I’ve got this insane syndrome. It’s what I do.

Anyway, against his better judgment, Dad decided to leave me alone for a couple of hours. Because he wanted to look for man-things like chainsaw blades and tiny paintbrushes and sharp cutty things. They sell such things at the flea market. So we set up a meeting place a couple of hours later and I started walked cheerily through the flea market.

About twenty minutes later I realized the following things about the flea market:

  • mostly, what’s for sale at the flea market was junk;
  • no, I’m serious, like, it’s one huge dollar store, but with much higher prices;
  • any jewelry they had for sale was for blinged-out old ladies;
  • there was much, much less nail polish than Dad had purported;
  • everyone shopping there was old, and walked slower than death; everyone selling there was pushy, and got all up in your face
  • I got lost about five minutes after Dad walked away and stayed lost until he randomly found me looking all worried by the “why are these melons so huge NO THAT’S NOT A EUPHEMISM” fresh-fruit stand;
  • there are those bathroom concierges there, like it’s a fancy restaurant, or the carnival;
  • the whole place made me exhausted and then sad.

However, there was a LOT to see. Like, there was one kiosk with the MOST DEPRESSED TAROT READER LADY EVER! And one with a bunch of birds, and you could get your photo taken with those birds for only $5! (There were macaws, and I honestly thought about it, but decided against it. I mean, it was only $5, but it seemed kind of sad. Those poor birds, all hanging out in a flea market with people gawking at them.)

So I walked around for an hour. In that hour, I purchased three bottles of sparkly nail polish and a book. Oh, and a bottle of water. Because I got overheated because it was a zillion degrees in there. Grand total: $12 plus tax. I know. I’m a high roller, baby. Then I got well and truly lost. I walked past the Desperate Kettle Corn Lady 47 times. Desperate Kettle Corn Lady was all “FREE SAMPLES! FREE SAMPLES!” in a screechy painful voice every time anyone walked by. Listen, I hate kettle corn. I know, you’re probably freaking out right now because of that. I know most people love kettle corn. But I don’t like popcorn that is trickily sweet. Like, I don’t mind caramel corn. That’s SUPPOSED to be sweet. You can tell, because it’s shiny, and sticky, and smells like caramel. Kettle corn looks like it should taste like regular popcorn – salty and maybe buttery. Then you taste it, and it’s all, SECRETLY SWEET! Gack gack gack. So every time I walked past Desperate Kettle Corn Lady, I of course turned her down. This made her MORE DESPERATE FOR ME TO LOVE HER. “Kettle corn? Kettle corn? KETTLE CORN? IT’S A FREE SAMPLE MA’AM!” she’d shrill, and I’d be all “no thank you” and powerwalk past and she’d be all “FREEEE SAMPPLEEEEE” and then I’d get lost and there she’d be! Again! Dammit! Desperate to ply her tricky sweet wares!

I don’t want your corn, lady!

Also, I was very excited about the jewelry. Dad said there was a lot of jewelry. So I was PREPARED to drop serious COIN on some JEWELRY, dammit. However, the jewelry was…um…really horrendously ugly. With lots of fake gems. Very bedazzley. Lots of rings with those stretchy ringbands. And the pendants were really heavy on the skulls. And snakes. Or really large and ALSO bedazzley. Also, the people selling the jewelry were super-desperate and watched you with hungry eyes.

There were many wig shops. And women trying on wigs in them. That was sad. And a teeth-whitening place, right in the middle of the concourse, where people were getting lasers shot in their mouth where everyone could see. And a WEAPONRY SHOP! Oh, that one was hilarious. There were swords and nunchucks and spiked maces and flails and machine guns. RIGHT OUT IN THE OPEN. You could totally go medieval on someone’s ass at that flea market, no fooling. It made me laugh and laugh.

I found the tea stand that was advertised so heavily, but a., it was all herbal tea and I didn’t want that, and b., the man working there looked like a knifekiller. He looked INSANE. Like you know how Charles Manson had a child that he named Zezozose Zadfrack Glutz? But his adoptive parents renamed him Paul? I’m pretty sure Zezozose was running the tea stand. Not Paul. Zezozose. He was all, “HOW CAN I HELP YOU” when I was there for about .0001 second. No, thanks, I don’t want to watch you pull my intestines out and wear them for a scarf, thanks.

Oh, and headshop after headshop. Now, I don’t have too much of an issue with headshops. I mean, I don’t want to hang out in them, or anything. And I don’t really patronize them. But I understand they exist, and whatever. There are worse things. (Um…like the really creepy “Hardkore Porn” booth that I kept walking past with the SKANKIEST GUY EVER manning it, for example.) The main headshop’s name was “Wysefyre.” The spelling was more offensive to me than the wares, to be frank.


When I talked to her last night about our plans for going to the flea market:

Mom: Do you know what they have at the flea market?
Me: Wigs? Body piercing? A psychic?
Me: Oh, yeah. Those are all over.
Mom: Can you even imagine they’re allowed to sell those out in the OPEN like that?
Me: Yeah, there are worse things in the world, Mom. It’s not a big deal.
Mom: How can they DO that? Those are for DRUGS! Drugs are ILLEGAL!
Me: They just say they’re for tobacco to cover their butts, legally. It’s not like anyone’s forcing you to buy one, Mom.
Mom: When I walked past that shop, I LOOKED THE OTHER WAY. I wasn’t even going to pay ATTENTION to those drugpushers.
Me: They don’t really sell drugs there, Mom, that I know of. I mean, they MIGHT. If you know the PASSWORD.
Mom: Really? There’s a password for the drugs?
Me: No. I made up the password. There’s no password.
Mom: I hope when you go to the flea market, you don’t buy marijuana pipes.
Me: I’ll do my best to abstain from buying multiple marijuana pipes.
Mom:  Because they are EVIL.
Me: Yes. So evil. Like Satan himself, were he a small pipe used to inhale intoxicating fumes.
Me: Yeah. No. Not at all the funniest and weirdest conversation we’ve had this month. That’s what’s sad, actually.

Then, finally, when I just started wandering around aimlessly, I found Dad, and so I stuck with him like glue because I was afraid of being stuck at the flea market for the rest of my life and ending up like a carny and I didn’t want to be a carny. Dad bought a bunch of man-things like tools and sharp things and wasabi peas (FINE, those were for me) and then we found a perfume stand with a bunch of perfume oils and one was “Obama” scented and you KNOW I had to smell what that smelled like, I mean, come on, like you wouldn’t? (SIDE NOTE: it smelled like generic man-cologne, I find it hard to believe Obama wears something that bland) and then Dad was all, “IT’S TIME TO GO” because he can’t stand the President and I guess by smelling that perfume I betrayed him? I don’t know. I was ready to leave, anyway. All was well.

So, the flea market? Unimpressed. I honestly don’t know who would find that exciting. Survivalists? Old people who like garbage jewelry? I guess there were a lot of cheap plastic homewares if you were starting a new home and were poor. Meh, meh, meh.

Off to the hotel tomorrow, then on the plane Sunday. If blogging is weird Sunday or Monday, I’ll get back on track soon. Bye, ocean. *sob*

About lucysfootball

I'm not the girl with the most cake. Someday. SOMEDAY. View all posts by lucysfootball

29 responses to “This little piggy went to market…and left sadly disappointed.

  • becomingcliche

    I’m sorry the flea-market stunk! I had high hopes for you. Not “getting high hopes.” Just to be clear on that in case your mom is reading.


  • sj

    I hate Kettle Corn, too! For the same reasons you do. I call #sneakyfuckery on the Kettle Corn front.

    I am the same way with flea markets. I get all excited, thinking I’m going to find ALL THE DEALS and then I end up disappointed. I do have a friend that found an awesome goat necklace at one, but I’ve never been so lucky. [sadface]

    I’m glad you didn’t have to become a carny. I’m pretty sure they don’t offer wifi to carnies and I would have missed you terribly.


  • jeffrecitestheblues

    Iy might not have been interesting but you got a pretty good blog post out of it. I completely sympathize with the part about the kettle corn lady! There is this fruit vendor near my apartment and once every month or so I’ll stop by but ne never has any customers and I always feel so ashamed as I speewalk by him while he stands there staring.


    • lucysfootball

      People selling things always make me feel sad. I never know where to look or what to do. I usually just pretend I’m distracted by something else and speedwalk on by. I know they know, though. It’s upsetting.


  • Heather

    I don’t like kettle corn, either. I mean, popcorn that looks like it is full of buttery-saltiness, but then is all sweetness when you taste it? Pure evil. Yuck.


  • Andreas Heinakroon

    I’m sorry, but real pop corn is salty and tasty. Anything else is just impersonating pop corn badly, and taste horrible.


  • Andreas Heinakroon

    Flea markets are my vision of hell*, and being stuck for a day at a gigantic flea market would induce nightmares for weeks.

    * Not really. My vision of hell is me working as a removal man, and having to move the same household over and over again. Also, they have lots of bulky, awkward, delicate and really expensive stuff. (I probably think about my vision of hell way too much for an atheist..)


    • lucysfootball

      It really wasn’t that bad. It was very clean and indoors. It was just nothing I wanted, and a lot more new stuff you could buy in the store than good treasures like a garage sale, like I was thinking. That’s what I wanted, I think.

      And YES. That’d be my hell, well, one of them, anyway, too. I hate moving. HATE IT. Nothing makes me more apt to break out into yelling or tears than moving.


  • 35jupiterdrive

    I feel so sad for your flea-market experience, especially since (I’m sorry about this) I had an excellent day at two yard sales that were around the corner from my house. (Okay, one was across a busy street, but still!)

    My house used to look like the medieval weaponry booth because I had an ex who sold all that stuff at ren fests. You really didn’t want to break into our apartment. Just sayin’.

    Your mother should stay far, far away from California, where we have legal pot shops on pretty much every corner. The only thing about pot being legal that I find irritating is when people are rude about their smoke. Which also bothers me about cigs, so there you go. There’s one shop in the San Fernando Valley that I drive by sometimes that I love because they did a really artistic painting on the outside of it. Very cool and random, all at once. I’ll post about it at some point so you can see.

    There is a pretty good flea market in West Hollywood (or maybe it’s Hollywood? It’s right on the town line.) I should go at some point. This reminds me of how I felt about the Farmer’s Market in Hollywood (West Hollywood?) Across the street from the Writers Guild building, whatever town that is. I thought it was going to be this huge place filled with pretty vegetables and exotic fruits. But it was basically the same as your flea market experience. Except there’s a cool candy store & a cool hot sauce store. Otherwise, lots of LA t-shirts. Blech.


    • lucysfootball

      I think yard sales might be a better source of treasures than the flea market. I thought the flea market would be more like a huge yard sale/garage sale, but it wasn’t. Oh, well. I’ll know better next time.

      Oh, Mom would hate living somewhere with legal weed. Whoo! :)


  • jbrown3079

    Marijuana Smoking Pipes. What a great name for a band of bagpipers.
    We go to consignment stores these days instead of flea markets.
    I have really enjoyed these stories this week. Glad to hear you are enjoying yourself.


    • lucysfootball

      Ooh, consignment stores. I wonder if that would be a better source of treasures? I am hoping for some treasures. Like a pirate!

      I had a great time, but I’m ready for home. I’m missing my place and my cat. I’d be a bad bon vivant. I think I’m a homebody at heart.


  • elaine4queen

    “I open the door, that Barack keeps closed, to his room, and enter into a warm, private space pervaded by a mixture of smells that so strongly speak of his presence, his liveliness, his habits — running sweat, Brut spray deodorant, smoking, eating raisins, sleeping, breathing.”
    — 16 Revelations About Young Barack Obama From His Ex-Girlfriends


  • Caron ET (@runreadrant)

    Consignment stores or thrift stores = yes Flea markets = no
    I love Kettle Corn and perhaps you will like it when you get older sort of a peri-menopausal thing:). I think you all need to read Geek Love. Loved your post as usual. P.S. I hope Dumbcat has stopped crying now!


    • lucysfootball

      I have read Geek Love! I reviewed it over at Insatiable Booksluts around Christmastime, actually!

      He is still crying on and off. He’s a little less broken, but still a little broken!


  • ProfMomEsq

    So behind, but here goes anyway.

    First, popcorn is meant to be popcorn. The only way popcorn should be sweet is if you eat something with it that is *supposed* to be sweet (e.g., handful of popcorn followed by either handful of M&Ms or handful of Milk Duds). This should occur only while watching a movie or as the result of incurable crying because of some jerk boy who crushed your heart.

    Second, the only good thing I recall ever coming from a flea market is my husband’s childhood dog (taking “flea” market to a whole new level). But, I was so optimistic for you. I thought the crappiness was limited just to our local flea market.

    Third, should your mom ever travel to San Francisco/Berkeley, I would pay *her* good money to be her tour guide. The blog material on that alone would be so, so, so unbelievably worth it.

    Fourth, I’m glad you are home, safe and sound. :-)


    • lucysfootball

      I am amazed so many people agree on the salty popcorn front. I thought, from the ubiquitousness of kettle corn, everyone loved that loathsome stuff!

      ZOMG, can you even IMAGINE my mom in San Francisco? I was there once. ALL THE HEADSHOPS. She would EXPLODE!

      Thank you! And I hope YOU are home safe and sound as well!


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