Written by Steddyeddy
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Wednesday, 23 April 2008

image for Confessions of a car booter Everything but the kitchen/bathroom sink

Well, I went, I saw and I conquered my first (and possibly only) car boot sale of the year. And what an exciting day it was to boot (aaarrrggghhhhhhh! sorry).

I loaded the car and headed off to sunny Otley, home to that famous troupe of pectoral dancers the Chippendales, or was it Chip 'n' Dale the Disney characters........ oh no, just realised, it was Thomas Chippendale, the forefather of MFI......... in the West Riding of Yorkshire.

I wasn't too sure as to where the sale was being held, but figured that seeing as Otley is not the biggest town in the County, I would search for that Greatest of British traditions to guide me...the queue. It took about 10 minutes to find the only queue in Otley, and lo and behold, yes, this queue was for the very car boot sale I sought

Directed to my "pitch", which was three octaves above the burger van (please, do keep up) I duly set up my display stalls, or, to give them their official technical term, B&Q paste tables.

And I was not to be disappointed - having set up my wares (CD's I'd already converted to MP3's and wanted rid of, glass bottles, assorted teapots, some old handbags, plenty of jigsaws and old games, some Airfix kits and an assortment of glass 'things' the wife had deemed no longer useful), and within three minutes of the great unwashed public being admitted, a gentleman of Far Eastern persuasion enquired as to whether I might have any mobile phones for sale.

Lacking any Vodafone or O2 point of sale, I replied rather loudly "No, but you can have my recently acquired Sony Ericksson for two hundred quid".

For some strange reason, he replied with a rather blank and vacant stare, possibly not helped by the peals of laughter from fellow stall-holders.

But I wasn't letting go.

I took the phone out of my pocket, and pressing a few buttons said "Look,my ring tone is the Dr Who theme, and my incoming message tone is the Richard Dreyfuss chord from 'Close Encounters'. I'm prepared to let you have those for free. And I'll also leave all the junk messages and details of the mortgage insurance reclaimers, double glazing salesmen, no win no fee merchants and Fitness First marketing calls I can't seem to get rid of. All for free."

But this was to no avail, he started to walk away. I shouted "Ok. Ok. Listen to Tony. One hundred and eighty. My final offer. And I'll throw in a Halal version of Motorhead's Greatest Hits."

He broke into a fast run, a look of sheer terror on his face. Plainly, he was distressed that his regular "I'll give you 50p" was not going to work on me!

I shouted after him "My friend here on the next stall tells me you go a great Vindaloo! Do give my best wishes to President Musharraf. He's doing a great job in West Bradford. Lovely man."

By now, not only had the laughter from fellow traders increased, but several had broken into spontaneous applause. Why, I do not know. I was only engaging in a bit of East End banter, although I believe my version might have been slightly different to that normally experienced in the East End of Otley.

The old TV went for a fiver. The lateral thigh trainer to a painfully thin young Liverpool lass. The Trivial Pursuits to a young teenager for his dad. The set of 6 cut-glass brandy glasses to a Polish woman and 6 Yes CD's to an erudite middle aged man who it transpired was related to one of the Kaiser Chiefs. Or maybe it was one of the actual Kaisers. I couldn't tell properly because of his heavy German accent, interrupted by his occasional utterance of "Seig Heil - tomorrow I march on Barnsley".

And then we noticed that the clear blue sky had disappeared and some funny white stuff was beginning to fall. There not being a careless cocaine snorter hanging from the roof above me, I concluded it was snow. And yes it was. April or not, it was snow! Making lovely patterns on my display and ruining anything made of paper or card as it melted.

So, I chucked the remainder back in the car, and headed off home.

The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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