I pulled into the donation line and saw the racks and racks of bagged clothing and rolling containers of all the other stuff. It had been a good day for donations at Saver’s Thrift store.
When it was my turn, I got out of the car to open up the back of my SUV.
“Wow!” I said to the young man who came to retrieve my bags.
“This is nothing!” he said. “You should’ve seen it earlier.”
“Marie Kondo has done wonders for thrift stores,” I said.
“Who’s that?” he asked.
“She wrote a book called The Life-changing Magic of Tidying Up,” I said.
“Oh, she’s the one that says things should spark joy!” he said.
And so it goes. People are cleaning out the things in their houses that don’t spark joy and taking them to the nearest thrift store. Thrift stores are booming. Thrift stores are popular. Smart people shop at thrift stores.
I shop at thrift stores.
“Do you want a receipt?” the young man asked me.
“Sure,” I said.
The receipt came with a 20% off coupon, the real reason I donate. But I didn’t use it today. Today was 30% off everything if you are over 55. Every Tuesday.
I am definitely over 55.
“Go find something that sparks joy!” the young man said as I got back into my car.
And I did. I found two Rubbermaid tubs with lids for the garage. I found an assortment of girls’ dresses and some pretty curtains, a flower pot and a magazine rack. I found a picture frame and some index cards. All in all I spent about $59.00. None of the items sparked extreme joy for me, but the prices sparked joy, so I bought them.
Neither shopping at malls nor retail stores sparks joy for me.
Marie Kondo, you are the patron saint of thrift stores everywhere. Your divine advice has caused people to fill up second-hand stores with their discarded stuff.
One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.
Stuff that doesn’t spark joy for you might spark joy for others.
Reduce, re-use, recycle. Marie Kondo has unwittingly helped with the environmental campaign.
We need more Savers stores. We need more people rejecting heavy packaging of new items. We need people to donate, not throw things away.
The young guy at the donation drop-off line knows this. I know this. Now you know this.
Do your part. Go pop some tags.