Well, not toxic, exactly... maybe just a little bit rank. But in a nice way. With a garnish.

Monday, July 09, 2007


I have run out of unread books!

It is time for me to do the charity shop circuit. Charity shops are the best thing since sliced bread (and fitted sheets) (although to be honest, I am happy to slice my own bread) because it means that I can feed my habit for an average of about 75p, plus, I get to have a bet with myself about how many 'Peter Benchley - Jaws' versus 'Virginia Andrews - Flowers in the Attic' I will see.*

I am very lucky, because, within about 100 metres from my front door is the beginning of The Circuit. Imp and I do it when we are too fat/thin for our clothes, depending on how many pizzas we eat.**
At the moment I am wearing MediumPieMuncher clothes, which means that I can spend all my money on books.

I head on down to the PDSA, full of hope.
Not a sausage.

Next, Tenovus. No good books, but I am tempted by a boomerang. However, the last time I almost bought a boomerang, Imp gave me a Scowl. With a Capital S.
Checked by that particular chilling thought I hurry out the door.

British Heart Foundation. Chick lit. And not a single book under £2. Outrageous! I leave.

My feet are getting tired now. For some reason, Charity Shop Shopping is more tiring than mountain walking. I think it is the air, which I suspect that it is laced with some form of airborne-tranquiliser that is designed to hit you as you enter and, dull your senses to the extent that you are prepared to start buying brass dogs, old ashtrays and a dead old lady's dribble-stained thermal vest.

This is not a problem to me as I am a professional. I am like a highly trained killer - I dart in, head straight for the books, scan, and leave without inhaling more than twice.
I expect I could give Andy McNabb a run for his money, if ever we should meet in a Charity Shop Shopping Contest.

I make a mental note to write to him. He probably won't open the letter, though, unless I draw bullets on the envelope.

I make a mental note to draw bullets on the envelope. And a tank.

I trudge into Barnados. If I don't find a good book now, I will have to cross the road and the shops Across The Road take a higher level of shopping skill as, they have people who are too tall/thin/small (or have a milky eye) and who pounce and shake collecting tins at you.

Bingo! A book I have never read!
Just as I am about to pay, I spot (with my highly trained Charity Shop Shopper's eyes (read this and weep, Andy)) a Mr.Man mug and it is only 50p!

I pay, trying not to get grumpy at the old lady who wants me to wrap the mug in two carrier bags and who can't see the buttons on the cash till but, no problem. I am untouchable because, today I am the proud owner of a Mr.Lazy mug.

Imp will be so impressed.

*Jaws - 8; Flowers in the Attic - 13

**Me - 2; Imp - 2 slices


  • At July 10, 2007 9:37 am, Blogger garfer said…

    Charity shops all have the same smell. There's definitely a hint of dead people.

    I collect raffia placemats and 42" crimplene flares. PDSA has the edge on Oxfam when it comes to sourcing these items.

  • At July 11, 2007 11:55 am, Blogger funny thing said…

    Lucky bastard. There is a shortage of crimplene in Wales, due to Health and Safety so-called standards.

  • At July 12, 2007 7:55 am, Blogger Tickersoid said…

    The literary vacuum would explain why you’ve been reading other peoples blogs.

  • At July 12, 2007 10:03 am, Blogger funny thing said…

    You can't read a blog in the bath.

  • At July 13, 2007 8:39 am, Blogger tea and cake said…

    What Are the charity shops doing charging so much for books?! I recently had the misfortune to own a car (we are rural here) that only had a tape music playing machine in it. Cancer research charged one whole pound per tape, and so did the sally army!

    piss take or what?

    But, now I've got a super-duper cd playing machine car, I'll feel guilty if I don't donate them back - think I'll pick save the children, they're prices are better, anyway.

  • At July 18, 2007 1:43 am, Blogger Maureen said…

    Hah! I was at a recent book sale by the Children's Hospital and saw many, many copies of the same novel strewn about. Needless to say I stayed away from those obvious great works of literature...

    I have a request, FT; if you have the time and/or inclination; I am so pleased you have a link to my Stale Coffee blog. But I just switched over to a new blog and would love it if you can change your link as well...or if this really PO's you, you can delete the link altogether ;) (but I hope not)

    Here's my new blog addy:

    I'd Rather Be Blogging

    I have your link to Toxic Soup on my new site as well.

    Cheque's in the mail...thanks!

  • At July 20, 2007 2:26 pm, Blogger y said…

    My local charity shops sells used paperbacks for £1.70, the thieves!

    Once I bought one I had not only read already, but had probably given to the shop myself.

  • At July 22, 2007 8:35 pm, Blogger C said…

    charity shops are too expensive these days.

  • At March 26, 2008 10:00 am, Anonymous diamante sparkles said…

    charity shops are incredibly creepy. and musty.


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