A guy comes walking into the shop carrying a long box of comics…For the uninitiated a “long box” is a type of box made specifically for comic books and contains between 300 and 350 comic books. When someone comes in with a long box rather than a Rubber Made bin or a cardboard box they picked up at a grocery store it usually means they are a collector and have probably taken good care of the books they are bringing to sell.
Guy – Hi, ummm do you buy comic books?
TOM – Some, it depends on what they are. May I take a look at them?
Guy – Sure!
The Guy puts the box down on the table and I wait for him to take the lid off, which he does, then I start looking through them by quickly moving them with my fingers and glancing at the titles. This is easy to do as they are all bagged and boarded.
The guy continues to talk while I do this.
Guy – I moved into a new place and the old tenet left these behind so I figured I have no use for them why not make a little money off of them.
I have finished looking through them and put the lid back on the box.
TOM – Sorry but there really isn’t a lot there I can use.
Guy – But you barely looked through them, how do you know?
TOM – I’ve been in the business for nearly 35 years it doesn’t take me long to see if there is anything good in the box.
Guy – So you are saying they are worthless?
TOM – No, that is not what I’m saying. They probably have some value to someone. I’m just saying that there is not enough there that I need to make it worth my while to buy them.
Guy – But there are some that you want?
TOM – Yes but I either buy everything a person brings in or nothing. I never cherry pick the good stuff because then you would be left with a bunch of books only good enough to use for heating the house.
Guy – Since there are some in there though you could make me an offer.
TOM – Sorry, but I also never make offers. I figure they are your books so you know what you need to get out of them.
Guy – I have no idea of their value. Can you help me out?
TOM – Well, A good rule of thumb is people very seldom leave behind anything of any real value so I think you should be able to gauge their worth in that way.
Guy – I suppose, but I don’t want to get ripped off. Can you give me an idea of which are the good ones and their value?
I was starting to get a bit perturbed but I managed to maintain my composure.
TOM – If you would like the books appraised I can do that for you but we charge and it is not cheap.
Guy – How much would that cost?
TOM – I charge $35.00 per hour with a minimum of 4 hours so the absolute least you would be paying for an appraisal is $140.00. Which probably is more than these books are worth.
Guy – Well if you already know the books aren’t worth $140.00 why would you charge me that much to appraise them?
I am now getting more than a bit perturbed and barely maintaining my composure.
TOM – Because I would still have to individually grade and price each book and then work up a spreadsheet for you that would accurately inform you the implied, but not necessarily real value of the books.
Guy – But if you just point out the good ones to me I can look them up myself and then I’ll know if you or anyone else is trying to rip me off.
OK…I was now completely done with this Rectal Outlet…Isn’t that a nicer to call him what he was?
TOM – OK… You, sir, have used up enough of my time and also managed to use up ALL of my patience. You come in here with a box of books that you found when you moved into a place. You have ZERO money invested in them, you have obviously made no attempt to find their previous owner but you waltz in here like I am expect me to educate you about the values of these books and then indicate that I’m probably going to rip you off when in point of fact even if I gave you one dollar you would still be money ahead since YOU basically stole these books. So why don’t you pick up your ill-gotten goods and get the hell out of my shop. You are stinking the place up!
Guy – Geeze, simmer down. You don’t have to take it personal.
TOM – I’ll simmer whatever way I damn well please. And NO, I don’t have to take it personal; however I am choosing to take it personal! Now unless I was unclear the door is in THAT general direction.
Guy – You know what, SCREW YOU!
And with that he hefted the box and left the shop screaming obscenities the whole way to his vehicle.
And I was having such a good day right up until then.
That is the type of person I can REALLY live without.