Mark was at a nearby University card show satiating his hobby appetite (baseball memorabilia), so I decided check out the nearby flea market. Mark and I have been here a few other times, and it's usually pretty hit or miss. This time around, I picked up a few cool things, but nothing major. I found a vintage Hamburglar glass, a calligraphy book, an old postcard of Mt. Rainier, and a few vintage tins. Stay tuned for a few pics of the tins in a future post. Anyway, I think I spent 5 bucks total.
While the finds were mediocre, what stood out to me was the attitude, the feel of this place. The friendliness of sellers at Jack's, especially with me holding a camera, was a complete 180 from the experience I had at Rogers.
I didn't mention it in the Rogers blog post, but I had been heckled for taking photos at the flea market. At Jack's, however, people were more curious than anything else.
"Is this for a project?"
"Are you a student?"
"You can take pictures, as long as you're not with the IRS."
I told a lot of people about the blog, although I didn't mention it by name.
One guy, who was selling the glass bottles pictured above, talked to me for about 15 minutes. The royal blue bottle, he said, was for a laundry detergent called moonshine. (If you look closely, you'll see moonshine etched on the bottle.) It apparently was a blue detergent that kept white clothes white, back in the old school days. We then discussed Pittsburgh history for awhile, including the time period when Pittsburgh didn't have the H. Blasphemy, if you ask me. Ha.
I think the conversational aspect of this place is something that's kind of a regionalism. Pittsburghers are friendly. Many talk to strangers as if they're good friends. I think it's welcoming and refreshing. While it's happened to me several times in Pittsburgh, it's also something I've never experienced anywhere else I've lived.
My favorite overheard quote? (I heard some good ones, so it might be worth a dedicated post during my next flea market trip.)
A mom talking to her kids: "This is a lot better than church, isn't it?"
What have your more memorable flea market shopping experiences been like?