Tuesday, January 26, 2010

YOUR EZINE COMMENTS

Last week's ezine drew more comments on our blog than we have seen recently. Some of you are concerned about the TV show "American Pickers." Many felt the pickers were wrong to pay so little for some things they bought from a veteran. Watch another episode or two and let us know how you feel. The show airs on the History Channel on Monday nights.

Also of concern to many of you: How to open a collectible Pepsi can if you plan to save it. Open it from the bottom, doing as little damage as possible, or let it stay full. The carbonated content will eventually escape and the can will be empty.

21 comments:

Anonymous said...

My husband was part of Desert Shield in 1991. He brought back a can of Pepsi becauss it was labeled in Arabic. Last year, we were watching T.V. and heard a loud bang. We couldn't find the source that night, but the next day discovered the can on the floor, the bottom of it was behind the bookcase it sat on. There was little stain from the contents, so I guess most of it evaporated, but there was a deep dent in the wall where the bottom hit when it blew. So I would recommend emptying the can if you plan to keep it. Dawn

Anonymous said...

Concerning American Pickers, most people do not realize how many hands a piece of antique passes through before it gets to an antique store. First you have the original owner, who sells it to someone, who auctions it off to a dealer, who may sell it in their shop, or even sell it to another dealer. Now keep in mind that it may pass through several hands before it even gets auctioned off. Unless you have been in the business, you have no idea. In the late 80's, me and a friend would go into PA and find places where we could pick up antiques for a song. Then we would go to NYC on Saturday at a PS that would have tables, and sell our finds. And yes, there were very reputable antique dealers from NYC that came and looked at our table. But sometimes we would also take it to Southeby's. It just depended on the piece we acquired. As for the seller, it is his decision in the end to sell or not to sell.

Michael Sehr said...

People sell to pickers for what they want or they don't sell. There is a lot of hidden cost to maintain a brick and morter antique store. If pickers can't get a good price, the store can't make enough profit to keep the doors open. We all love the "junk collectors" and "hoarders". Without them, the treasures we stumble upon would end up in landfills. Thank to all of you who hate to get rid of "stuff" but when you do, it ends up in the hands of someone that loves, cherishes and uses it. Michael

Anonymous said...

Regarding American Pickers - my observation is that the "pickers" are buying from experienced "collectors". Some are reluctant to sell, some offers are refused, some items simply aren't for sale. I have seen some hefty profits, some modest gains. So far I don't think any "collector" has been treated unfairly. I enjoy the show.
However, I do compare their dealings with one reported in one of my gun magazines. An elderly lady had a rifle for sale, $100. The experienced buyer/collector looked at it, pulled out several $100 bills (he didn't reveal how many) and said, this is my offer for what I think it's worth, take it or leave it".
Dan

cajunc said...

We have watched two shows from American Pickers, and are shocked at the people who let those guys in their house, in their barns, and outbuildings. Surely the American public needs to learn some SAFETY lessons along the way. This seems to encourage the aggressive pickers who drive out in the woods to find a country bumpkin.

We also cannot imagine how this show can hold the interest of the American public. It does not move quickly, it seems the knowledge base is limited to certain areas, like tin cans and metal on wheels. What happens to the Galle vase the buy for $1 when they toss it in the box with the cans and clack down the road?

Also, are they really pickers? It appears that they sell out of a business, maybe not to shops at all.

You give them credibility, encouraging your readers to watch the show.

Linda
cajunC

maresbears said...

Regarding the American Pickers issue, it was obvious the old man they bought the item from was totally unaware of any of the true value of the piece and I think, while the pickers were delighted, that they could have been fairer. I remember well an incident where two friends who were quality antique dealers told me that they had bought a Tiffany lamp for $40 from an old woman who was having to sell off things in order to keep up with her rent. I was appalled and could not bring myself to continue to be friends with these people. I did tell them this. They could have offered a fair price because they were putting the lamp in their own shop and would have been many times the price they paid. I think fairness is the proper term. One-third of its value sounds right to me.

Anonymous said...

I really like the show.. The people the guys bought from were happy! Who else is going to rummage through all that stuff! How wonderful to have someone knock on your door and offer you money for STUFF that is wasting away. The people were treated kindly and looked like they were having a great time...

Anonymous said...

I have been a picker for over 30 years. Although not to the extent that these 2 guys are, I have traveled a bit and I have knocked on doors. The standard I have always adhered to was to let the seller name his price first. In one instance, we even had the seller write down his price and we wrote down our price to see which one the seller would chose. Of course, ours was higher. I never left anyone feeling cheated. Most of the seniors are far more savvy than the anonymous writer would suspect. And they get a feel of how much money the buyer is willing to spend too. The theoretic profits from the buys on the show are not that huge in the grand scheme of things and remember, these items will probably pass through more than a few more hands before they are settled in their new home. Also take into consideration what has to be done to some of the pieces to make them saleable. I don't think the show would continue if the producers thought the sellers were being ripped off.

Anonymous said...

Re: Soda cans. I had saved several cans of soda that were collectible. I left them full. Although the drink did eventually evaporate, the metal has become very soft. I guess the acid ate away at it over the years. All the cans are dented and can't be straightened so I would suggest emptying the cans.

Susan Desnick said...

Thank you for letting me know about American Pickers. I have enjoyed the show. I think they have been quite fair in their offerings and many times they have paid the full asking price. People have to realize they spend their days driving around looking for items in hope they will have a buyer for them. I'm sure some of the items they purchase never sell or sit around for a long time. It is a business and you do have to buy it for a reasonable price so you can make a profit. You have to add in your hours, gas, storage etc. into your days find, not just the cost of the item.

Anonymous said...

If you want to hear a REAL story of how the "American Pickers" effected one family, read the posts on the history channel, particularly the one posted from "I am the son of the man picked for the Feb 8th, show". I found this show disgusting and it made me feel ill. I don't care which way you try to spin it, taking advantage of elderly people who have NO idea of what their items may or may not be worth is not okay. They, for the most part are just happy that someone has come to visit them, and when they stick a camera in their face and tell them their from the history channel...well, how intriguing. I couldn't bring myself to watch the 2nd episode, I did hear it was tame, but cut up....they are now editing all of the episodes to make these 2 con-artists look good. Ahhhh, the power of TV editing, they can make you believe anything. Please visit the posts for this show on the history channel website, and maybe you will get a feel how most "ethical" people, that have some morals actually feel about this program. I don't care if they pick from people who have some idea of what their items might be worth, and are willing to sell to them regardless, but they intentionally drive around and look for houses that don't have satellite dishes, no access to internet, etc.

Mary said...

I enjoyed the second show much more than the first. While I thought the boys took advantage of the vet in the first episode, in the second, they were more than fair with the sweet 84-year-old widow.

Anonymous said...

Concerning "American Pickers"...while I realize you need a buyer and a seller to make a deal, I feel they really took advantage of the widow
when they bought the "memory jug".
They never showed how much it was
worth over the $50.00 they paid which was a red light to me. She was way too trusting and these elderly folks need to be extremely careful letting strangers onto their property! There's always some dirtbag waiting to take advantage of them!

Anonymous said...

I'm a licensed clinical social worker, and I have done much work with seniors, especially in doing assessments of their capacity.

I was appalled at American Pickers.

The WWII veteran, who was in his 80's, was clearly frail, and I do not believe he had full capacity to understand the worth of the items the pickers asked to buy.

The outright glee the pickers showed in taking advantage of that gentleman was both sad and scary.

"Buyer beware and seller take care" applies only to dealings made between adults of good capacity, and those who are not in such desperate financial circumstances that they will take whatever is offered because "... now I can go buy supper".

I am very glad you recommended we watch the show. I think it will do a lot for people putting the word out to seniors so that they are forewarned. If they want to sell their goods, that's fine, of course. But they need to know what they're worth first.

And the pickers have a right to make a profit. But at a time when the economy is so bad, and money so scarce, it is shameful not to offer a more fair price.

No one needs to "take candy from a baby".

Sincerely,
Monica

Anonymous said...

Concerning American Pickers..
This show abets the dishonest ..
and there are many,many out there.
My elderly aunt was diagnosed with Parkinsons disease and had to move to a smaller residence...A sweet talking,antique dealer Picker offered to help her for the rest of her life..she gave him her Victorian house and it's antique contents(est.value $450K)for $5thousand ..then he kicked her out in the street at the close of sale.It was legal...None of her family knew about it until too late
This is elder abuse..and is quite common.I have heard other stories like this..

Anonymous said...

Concerning american pickers, if you don't like the show, don't watch it. My wife and i own interest in an antique store. We pick for ourselves. We are always looking for good deals, otherwise our shop would go broke. People don't realize what rent, utilities, and insurance cost. Also the cost of labor. We usually ask what a person wants for their items, and if they want an offer, and the offer is too low, they can reject it. We enjoy the show very much. Dean and Lynda

Mamajoon said...

Hi there, I have a Royal Doulton tray with the following markings: 'Sir Roger de Coverley' (in a circle with a fox, hunting whip & bugle) below the circle reads: 'Royal Doulton Made in England D5814' The RD mark under the lion & crown reads 'Made in England Royal Doulton England'
Could you tell me how old it is and how much it is worth? many thanks J.W. (not sure how to attach a photo)

Fred said...

I didn't see the show with old vet and maybe they did take advantage of him but I don't understand why people are so upset because he was a vet. So what. The two guys buying from him were old enough to be vets. Should we feel sorry for them also? Like the show.

Anonymous said...

I think the "Pickers" program is great! I not only enjoy watching and learning from it but I also think it is a great way to stimulate the sinking antique and collectible market which is slowly dying in this economy. I also agree with many that the owner of the item pretty well knows what it is worth or really doesn't care as long as it doesn't end up in the landfill. The pickers are re-cycling at its finest and it is good for everyone involved and most of all for the economy. I don't feel that anyone is getting "ripped off" and in fact in many cases if the owner should pass, someone who knows nothing about antiques or collectibles is most likely going to trash everything in sight and we will lose some "one of a kind" treasures.

Anonymous said...

As a former "picker" I usually paid what people asked for their items. Once in a while, if I wasn't sure of the market for an item, I would bargain. Sometimes I made money, sometimes I got stung.
If I wasn't interested in an item and I thought it was priced too low I would tell the seller, but in reality the seller needs to do his/her own research.

Anonymous said...

The segment recently showing them making a supposed $500 profit on a used grave marker shows how ethical they truly are. To encourage cemetery looting is beyond bad taste.