Every thrift adventure has a lesson. Most times, I can speak to it like the characters or their continued kindness. But there are times when a loss for words is present. Perhaps those words are hanging out in uncharted territory, a region my mental cartographers have yet to survey. Let’s call it the wild west of the brain.
Last weekend, we watched Little Big Man, the Forrest Gump of the wild west. Unfamiliar with the movie? I recommend it. It hit the full spectrum of emotion and got me to thinking.
Dustin Hoffman’s character Jack Crabb has a wandering life and eventually meets up with his long lost sister. Sister Caroline? She's no sissy, a sharp shooter, a live-without-a-man kind of woman. She reckons it’s about time for Jack to learn to shoot and the secret is Snake Eyes, “to hit the target before even touching the gun.” Jack's not sold but does his best to please his sister. He squints, breathes funny and hits the target first shot. Zap! Jack Crabb is instantly transformed into a genuine gunslinger with a fancy black outfit and his own gunslinger name, “The Soda Pop Kid.”
Snake eyes bit me and grew an idea. I went to the thrift store and put on snake eyes, opened my thrift sense and invited it to flow.
I swaggered up to the long sweater racks with my spurs mentally clicking with each step. Boom! I pulled out a NEW Sundance wool and angora blend sweater, my size for $4.99! I’ve been wearing that sweater for days. I’m wearing it now. My youngest daughter even slept in it one night. And, how ironic for it to be Sundance, a western company! AND, today is the first day of the Sundance Film Festival!
Shocked by such success, I high-tailed it over to the dress rack, prepared to pull before raising a finger. Bam! Out came a vintage Jaeger wool dress in pristine condition made in Great Britain, my size for $4.99. Gorgeous dress. Classic but not conservative.
This was becoming pretty cool so I pretended to ride Old Paint over to the men’s suits on the far side of the store. Ba da bing! A gorgeous Jos. A. Bank suit for my husband, no alterations required and 50% off making it $4.50.
The last time, I didn't even need to think when I yanked out an REI jacket for my daughter for $2.99. It just landed in my hands.
I’m convinced, snake eyes opened up my thrift sense.
For the record, snake eyes ain’t gonna work in a department store. See, the target needs to be in one spot so all focus is honed. Scatter sweaters or dresses and concentration tosses up it’s arms and says, “I am so outta here!”
Perhaps that’s just a bit symbolic. Dump the contents of a life into one bucket and meet it dead on with snake eyes. You actually might actually pull out the right thing before you even touch the bucket.
All this western stuff was probably spawned by the fact that the 103rd annual National Western & Stock Show is on in Denver. Cowboys are running all over this city. Just yesterday, I heard one singing about an “Itty bitty girl born to an itty bitty world” while walking up Detroit. He was a bit bow-legged and really loud. I guess one has to be loud when wrestling up herd of cows. I cannot write about this event without mentioning that my youngest daughter won a slot through Mile Hi Girl Scouts to ride in the revered Mutton Bustin’ competition in the 101st rodeo in front of 14,000 folks. Now that takes some gumption when you’re five years old! Us parents, always bragging.
To see Snake Eye's watch this segment "Little Big Guy" from Little Big Man. Now get on over to a mirror and start practicing!