Feb 272017

Sometimes part of my job is bursting somebody’s bubble. I really don’t like doing it, but I guess somebody has to. One such example was an e-mail I received the other day from a very nice couple who have been reading the blog for a long time. They are weekend campers and have a pop-up tent trailer that they have used for 10 years or so. Now they are ready to step up to a travel trailer.

They wrote that the wife’s mother had a huge collection of Avon bottles and Jim Beam decanters that she had been accumulating for as long as anybody could remember. Mom was very proud of her collection and always told people that it was worth a small fortune. She even showed them price guide books showing that some of the items in her collection were worth a couple of hundred dollars each. Now Mom has passed away and my readers have inherited her precious collection and had hoped to sell it to pay for their new trailer. They are finding out that it is worthless.

They told me they have talked to every antique shop within 75 miles of their home, and while the mother bought many of her pieces from those various shops, and apparently paid a lot of money for them based upon the receipts she saved over the years, most dealers won’t even want to talk to them, and only one made an offer for the collection, which was 25 cents per item. And he told them the only reason he was offering anything at all was because the mother had been such a good customer over the years. They also tried eBay, Craigslist, and a couple of other online sales venues, as well as a yard sale, and found it all to be a complete waste of time. They asked for my advice and if there is any way of actually figuring out how much the collection is really worth, in spite of book value.

Like anything in the world, it is worth exactly what somebody is willing to pay you at that moment. Last week, or last month, or next year it may be worth more, or less. But right now it is worth what somebody is willing to give you for it. And basically, that’s about as much as a your aunt’s commemorative plate collection or those commemorative clad coins Grandpa is so proud of. The folks selling this stuff lead people on with promises of how much it is worth or how much it will be worth in the future. They are basically scam artists taking advantage of the gullible. I suggested these folks donate the collection to the local Goodwill or Salvation Army or some such charity and get a receipt for whatever they will give them, and use it as a tax deduction.

Speaking of scam artists, it seems like every week I get at least one email and sometimes more asking me to plug somebody’s Go Fund Me page. Some of these folks want to buy an RV or are looking for funds to support their RV lifestyle so they don’t have to work. Others have some story about a sick child in need of medical care. And, of course, whenever there is a tragedy, Go Fund Me pages spring up like dandruff on a dark suit. 99% of those solicitations are pure BS. And as for the folks wanting someone to buy them an RV or pay for their travels, lots of luck with that.

A good website to help you sort through all of these online scams is http://gofraudme.com/ They do a pretty good job of identifying the scams, and telling you what to look for when you receive these sorts of requests.

Congratulations to Hank Whitney, winner of our drawing for an audiobook of Slow Falling, book six in my friend George Weir’s excellent Bill Travis mystery series. We had 89 entries this time around. Stay tuned, a new contest starts soon.

Thought For The Day – I want my children to have all the things I couldn’t afford. Then I want to move in with them. – Phyllis Diller

Check Out Nick’s E-Books In Our Online Store

Click Here For Back Issues Of The Gypsy Journal

Click Here To Subscribe To The Gypsy Journal

Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  10 Responses to “I’m Sorry, Mom Was Wrong”

  1. “A good website to help you sort through all of these online scams is.” You probably want to finish that sentence before too many readers get up in the morning. 🙂 Then delete this comment so no one will ever know.

  2. too late! LOL

  3. Yep…too late.

  4. Maybe that was the whole idea !!! SCAMS ????

  5. Up early reading and think I read that sentence 4 times before my sleepy brain realized I was not missing something, Nick was! ??

  6. Yes, every day the grown kids of seniors who just passed on are walking into homes or apartments and staring in wonder at the “collections” they’ve just inherited. And ask, why? I think it’s more because that person really got some joy out of collecting them. In my Mom’s case it was ceramic angels. We all kept a few in her memory, but certainly not for any monetary value. At least that was better than my grandfather. We found an entire room full of every issue of the Knoxville News Sentinel newspaper for the last 20 years – neatly folded and stacked in order from the first day to the last.

  7. That should have said http://gofraudme.com/
    For some reason it disappeared

  8. Anyone interested in buying A Department 56 collection. They could be used for skeet practice!

  9. Roy- If you find a buyer let me know. I must have 50+ pieces. However, I did
    set up the whole display in my younger years but it’s too much work now.V

  10. Re: the Go Fund Me sites. I got thoroughly reamed out by a Canadian blogger who started a site and asked for donations so her friend would have a better income. Then when she didn’t get hardly any donations she posted again that the results showed her for sure how selfish and heartless Americans were. I replied to that post saying the previous post had rubbed me the wrong way….and hence the reaming, not only by her, but by another Canadian as well. Needless to say she’s no longer on my blog list. It takes all kinds, I guess.

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>



Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.