Goodwill Hunting

Most people are big fans of thrift stores during the Halloween season every year.  After all, there is no better place to look for ridiculous pieces of clothing to put together in hideous ensembles for your perfect Halloween costume.  However, I am a big fan of thrift stores all year-round.  I often find my best clothes there (mainly because it’s the only place I’ll let myself buy designer labels).  I know most people find buying used shoes repulsive, but I’d be lying if I said I’m not eyeing the boot selection every time I walk into a thrift store.  Most of the people in my immediate circle are thrift fans as well.  My fiance only buys clothes from thrift stores, my brother’s junior year prom outfit came from Goodwill, and anytime I compliment my father on a new article of clothing, he responds, “Thanks.  I got it from GW fashions.”  It took me a long time to figure out “GW Fashions” is actually Centerville Goodwill.  (He’s right, excellent selection of clothes at that location.)  Additionally, this weekend I discovered my CA roommates are also huge fans of thrifting.  We made an afternoon of it, and success was had by all.
As soon as we walked in to the first Goodwill, I was immediately blown away by the amazing selection of actual Halloween costumes people have donated.  I have been to many a Goodwill in my day, but there is rarely anything good hanging on the single rack of actual Halloween costumes.  You are usually forced to scour the rest of the racks yourself, but not in Santa Clara.  They have several racks of actual Halloween costumes, AND they have taken the liberty of hanging any exceptionally obnoxious or ridiculous-looking clothing on those racks, so you don’t have to look so hard for your perfect Halloween  costume.  I had several things in my arms at one point out of sheer excitement that they were there.  I thought the selection of random objects in the back was pretty good too, but that COULD just be because it was the first time I’ve ever looked at the selection of random stuff in my adult life, while actually needing many of those things.  There was a huge DVD section too, but unfortunately I didn’t get the time to look through them as I spent most of our time there making googly eyes at the Halloween selection. My roommates asked why I was so amazed, and I told them I thought their Halloween selection was better than any I’ve ever seen.  They responded that it’s because there are far more “weird people” here than in the locations I’ve been to in the past.  They also told me, “If you think this place was good, just wait til we get to the next one.”  The next place was closed.

The last place is where I started getting scary.  It was the Sunnyvale Goodwill.  We walked in, and immediately spotted something shiny: fake weaponry.  My legs propelled me forward.  I lurched towards the box, and without hesitation pulled two swords up out of the box with great awe.  My words exactly, “Ooooooo! Ahhhh! I am always in need of a good sword.”  I looked at my female roommate with wide eyes, expecting agreement.  What I found was horror and confusion.  For the first time since we entered the store, I took in my surroundings.  I was standing in front of a large box full of fake weaponry, already holding 2 items, right next to my very nerdy  intelligent male roommates who were also gawking at the swords as if we needed them; this was supposed to be their thing, not mine.  I put down the fake swords and backed away slowly.  “What’s happening to me?” I asked my female roommate with a trembling voice.  We both knew the answer: too much time spent with engineers, and possibly too much exposure to Silicon Valley.  I ended up finding an amazing selection of teacher-related items, that were all $.49, which I excitedly purchased.  My roommates brought home a coffee painting for the kitchen, a jug for whiskey or something of the sort, 2 glass bowls, and coffee mugs.

                       And now for a series of hideous/amazing/maybe both outfits found at Goodwill:

Last Day of High School-2006
80’s night-2007
Halloween (Frenchy from Grease) 2007
Halloween (Lois from Family Guy) 2008
Halloween (Guys got their Braveheart costumes from GW) 2010
Pirate Party 2011
Halloween (Lucille Ball) 2011
Captain Hook costume for Peter Pan play-2012
When I was Captain Hook for a play this past Spring, I looked EVERYWHERE for decent fake swords, but they were nowhere to be found.  I could only find silly foam ones.  They were available online, but they were more pricey.  Luckily, someone else had a great selection from which she let us all borrow.  Then I walked into the Goodwill in Sunnyvale, and there they were!  Cheap and plentiful!  This is perhaps a better explanation of why I was so taken with them. 🙂

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