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Dutchess_III's avatar

What is one of the most wonderful material objects that you've stumbled on in your life?

Asked by Dutchess_III (42269points) May 26th, 2012

I BOUGHT A FOOSBALL TABLE AT GARAGE SALE!!! I have always, always wanted one, but didn’t want to spend the hundreds of dollars it would take to get a good one, so I never thought I’d have one. We pulled up to a garage sale. Rick said, “Hm. There’s a foosball table.” I wasn’t too interested at first because you can find crappy kid tables all over, made out of clothes hangers and clothes pins. But the closer I got, the faster my heart started beating….it’s a NICE one. The had $75. They took $50. It’s in perfect condition! Researched, new sells for $330. (Funny though…they said they played with it a lot. I stepped up to it like meeting an old friend, started moving my hands and realized that had assembled it a bit backwards. Two of the bars were in the wrong places!)

I no longer have a dining room but I DON’T CARE!!!!

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27 Answers

JLeslie's avatar

Awesome! It’s so wonderful when you buy something and just love it.

I don’t think I can count these as “stumbled on,” but they have definitely made me happy.

I think my DVR is one of my favorite material things. My husband and I really enjoy relaxing in front of the TV, it’s shared entertainment, and having the DVR changed my life. Now the TV scheduling does not control me in any way.

What also comes to mind is when my husband bought me my first level. I am always the one who measures in the house. When we need to hang pictures or whatever on the wall, I used to have to measure from the floor, do all sorts of check twice, sometimes check several times, before drilling. The level made that all much easier.

Oh, and my toaster oven. I use it every day. I wish my double oven had a small oven on top like a toaster oven, instead of two full sized ovens.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

Woo Hoo, unexpected goodies!

A cube shaped stained glass table lamp made by an artist friend. I saw it in a collaborative gallery and didn’t know it was her work but was immediately drawn to it. This was in the mid 90’s and the lamp was well over $500.00 which I couldn’t afford but the gallery let me lay it away and to this day, it’s one of just a few material objects I take everywhere I move.

The woman died some years back, was know mainly for costume jewelry made from glass so my lamp is kind of a unique work of hers. It always seems to be just the right touch to a room when it’s displayed, I like to think she knows how appreciated it is.

Charles's avatar

My computers.

flutherother's avatar

Probably my bicycle.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Neizvestnaya Pictures?

I was the foosball queen around these parts in the 70’s and early 80’s. It’s just a part of me. Rick’s never seen me play, but he’s heard me talk about it. Well, he challenged me to a du-ell, last night. :)

My son came by. I could have SWORN I taught him how to play…but then he spun the rod. I about died! Well, he know I taught him to shoot pool, and man, is he good. So I’m not a total failure.

I have to almost completely clear out my dining room of other furniture. I would NOT do that for anything other than a good foosball table! I’d KILL my husband if he brought some useless thing home that caused me to tear up my beloved decor in any way.

I’m so freaking excited! The bed room is off the dining room. I stumbled out, half asleep this morning, and the foosball table was the first thing I saw. I just got happy feet all over! It was the same feeling I got as a kid when I saw that Santa had come!

Neizvestnaya's avatar

I’d love to but don’t know how to post them here :(
A few days back I washed it with cotton balls and was actually talking to the thing like it was a pet. o_O

Dutchess_III's avatar

Aw! Do you have a digital camera Ms Vzzzz? Do you have a photobucket account? I’ll learn ya how to post pictures! I REALLY want to see that lamp!

dabbler's avatar

I was disinterestedly wandering around an ‘antique barn’ in tow of a girlfriend when I spotted a mirror shaped vaguely like a treble clef with a hand-carved cherrywood frame.
“Interesting” I thought, unusual and nicely done, clearly a labor of love by some obsessed craftsperson.
The barn’s proprietor saw me pondering, and mentioned that there was a companion, same shape but flipped on the vertical (i.e. mirrored shape). The set of both was much less $$ than I could have expected so I got them.
That was probably 20 years ago and they’re still some of my favorite possessions.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Pictures @dabbler! OK, ok. I need to post pictures of my foosball table!

wildpotato's avatar

I stumbled on my 60” Leclerc Fanny II loom last summer while browsing casually on craigslist. It was garaged for many years, so three of the reeds and all the treadle hooks rusted over, the apron had been chewed to bits by mice, and I had to drive a good deal to get it, but I GOT A $3,000 LOOM FOR $150!!!!

Dutchess_III's avatar

My own personal foosball table!

I’m having a hard time getting used to playing with just one ball! I started with seven, when Rick pointed out to me that we only needed one! :)

Michael_Huntington's avatar

my smartphone. More details when I get back.

dabbler's avatar

Ok here are the mirrors !
They’re about 36” high and 19” wide.

dabbler's avatar

@Dutchess_III That foosball table looks nicely made and solid ! A great deal at 50$.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@dabbler I think so too! I’m so excited! I have a large hanging stain glass lamp upstairs. Going to get it functional and hand it over the table. :) Maybe put in some wood floors and throw sawdust on the floor! And have a bowl of peanuts laying around. :)

Neizvestnaya's avatar

@Dutchess_III: I do have a photobucket I can load it to and then post the pb link to your PM box. I’ll do it the a.m. :)

mangeons's avatar

@Neizvestnaya I’d love to see the lamp as well, it sounds cool! :-)

Dutchess_III's avatar

Just click on the “direct link” box to copy it, then paste it here. If you want it to look like it’s linked to a word you put ” ”: around the word or sentence.

cookieman's avatar

My dad’s dog tags from the Navy (circa 1967). Other than a few photos, it’s all I have left of him.

A two-foot tall replica of the winged nike statue that lives in the Louvre. My wife bought it for me after we visited Paris and I dragged her through the Louvre for eight hours.

flutherother's avatar

@cprevite The “Winged Victory of Samothrace”. That was the exhibit that most impressed me on my visit to the Louvre many years ago.

cookieman's avatar

@flutherother: Yup, that’s the one. Conversely, I was underwhelmed by the Mona Lisa.

Michael_Huntington's avatar

So yeah my smartphone. I thought its sole purpose is to entertain me while I poop. Like an escort or something.
But last week, it was my savior. It gave me the subway directions to a cafe where my volunteer interview was going to be and gave me the exact location. Without my smartphone, I would’ve asked 200 people for directions (Because it’s not really popular) and it would’ve taken an hour or more. I probably wouldn’t even get the job.

Suck on that, you primitive stone stomping, knuckle dragging technophobes. Don’t you tell me how technology is going to ruin us. I’ll believe you when robots start attacking us or something.

Berserker's avatar

I own this game. As I understand it’s extremely rare, although I only got it because it’s Xena. Found it in a pawnshop, with the box and manual. I don’t know if it works, but it’s in decent shape. I don’t have an N64 so I can’t try it

Dutchess_III's avatar

My son somehow picked up an arcade ‘Asteroids’ game! The big one that you stood in front of, back in the 80’s.

hearkat's avatar

We didn’t exactly stumble on it, but my engagement ring was a rare find.

We had told my fiancĂ©‘s best friend (he’s a coin and antique dealer) they we were ring-shopping and wanted to find something unique, and we asked him to keep an eye out for us. Last month, he texted to say that he’d be attending an auction where there’d be jewelry, and suggested that we look through the catalogue. There were few engagement rings, typical stuff; but one antique art-deco diamond ring caught our eye. We asked his friend to check it out on the first day of the auction (jewelry was the 2nd day) and gave him the lot number.

So he went without looking at the photo, and said that when he first saw it, he was smitten with it. A female friend of his that was there, said that she’d bid close to double what they were estimating they’d get for it (but that was a bit higher than we could afford). So we went with him the next day, and the ring was beautiful—exactly what I wanted, without me having a clear picture of it in my mind. Once I saw it, I raised my maximum bid a couple hundred dollars, because I just loved it.

When we sat down as the bidding started, his friend asked what if it went $200 over what my max was? We had found that as a dealer, his percentage to the auction house was lower, so he had agreed to bid for us. As, such, I told him he could go $200 above my max, but I knew that would clean out our bank accounts – so we could go no higher. When the item came up, the bidding passed the estimate, then went past my original max before seeing it, then it was just us and one other bidder… up to the max after I saw it, and the other guy bid again! I was nudging his friend—go, go, go!—and he bid the absolute max we could pay, and thankfully the other guy let us have it. Phew!!

This is a photo I took at the restaurant we went to after the auction ended. It is an Old European Cut so it’s lower profile which means it doesn’t get as much light into it from the sides; but that was what I wanted, because the higher rings often catch on things and get in the way. My bff knows a jeweler, so we had him resize and appraise the ring (without telling my bff or him what we paid) and it appraised at triple what we paid in total (after auction house percentage and sales tax)!! We’d never have been able to afford something like this under other circumstances, and I love how each of our best friends played a part in making it happen.

Dutchess_III's avatar

OH WOW! That is the most beautiful ring I’ve ever seen!!! What DID you pay for it?

hearkat's avatar

@Dutchess_III: Thanks! I kinda wish I knew some back story on it, but there was no information about its history. We’ve decided not to divulge the amount we paid, though (sorry).

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