Day 101, new FOPAL job and a find

Wednesday, 3/13/2019

Went for a run, remembering to log the start and end in my ZIO patch log. There’s a paper log book in the box, but that’s for fogies. I had downloaded the ZIO app for the phone and do my logging there.

After the run I stopped at the UPS store and bought a box and some bubble wrap. At home, I boxed up the Buckeye Pottery pitcher (see Day 91) to send to my niece Laurel.

In the night, around 2am, I was having a wakeful spell and thought about all the things yet to be cleaned out and evaluated. One thing that looms like an ominous cloud is a pair of large metal cabinets out in what we called “the shop”, an enclosed room on the side of the garage. In the night I am thinking about having to clean empty those cabinets and throwing away un-sellable stuff — they were the place we put anything that we might want to use again sometime but don’t want in the house now — and it occurred to me that the cabinets themselves would sell in the estate sale. Fine metal locking cabinets. Then I wondered, where are the keys for those locking cabinets? And in order to get back to sleep I had to get up, find a note-pad, and write down the list of things I’d been thinking of: “pitcher, cab. keys, taxes”. Then I could go back to sleep.

So now, after wrapping the pitcher, I went out and opened the cabinet doors and there inside each door, were the keys to that cabinet hanging on a neat little hook made from a paperclip just to keep the keys handy. Right where you’d look for them, although nobody has looked for them since the cabinets went in, probably before 2000.

Then I spent an hour and a half on the tax workbook. That’s pretty close to done. I hope to polish it off on Friday, although I’m not sure I’ll actually hit the “send to CPA” button until after I’ve talked the financial guys next Tuesday.

I needed to be at FOPAL at 1pm for a meeting, and was just dropping off for a short nap at 12:15 when Chuck called. He has scheduled a termite inspection for tomorrow and now belatedly wanted to make sure I’d be here. I won’t; I’ll be at the museum. But we agreed he should have a key and can then give the inspector access. So he dropped by the house at 12:40 for a key. No numbers from a developer yet, although he’s talked to one.

Off then to FOPAL where I got trained on a new task: evaluating and pricing books for a section, in particular, the computer section. In my previous (and on-going) job of sorting, we separate newly-donated books to their section. If a book is somehow related to computers, it goes in a computer section box. Piles of boxes then stack up in front of the computer shelves.

Today, working with an experienced volunteer, I learned what happens next. We go through the boxes and do a cull of books that aren’t worth pricing. Almost all “–for Dummies”, all stuff for Windows 95 and other obsolete software, almost all books published before 2000 (some judgement needed here), get packed into new boxes and piled up for the “H2” people. H2 is the building where “bargain” books are displayed. Everything in H2 is $1, and things that don’t sell there, go to recycling.

About one in four of the books look salable. These we take back to the office where we enter their ISBNs into Book Scout Pro, which aggregates prices from all over the web. If a book is selling at $8 or more, we write a price on the flyleaf and put it in a box of priced books that will eventually be shelved for the sale. If it is selling at less than that, it goes in an H2 box.

So I put in 3 and a half hours on that, in the course of which I made a find: in the middle of a box, in among books on Java and C++, was an original, 1931 edition of the IBM Songbook! I grabbed that puppy and put it with my hat. That isn’t going in the book sale, that’s going with me to the museum tomorrow.

After work I bought a few groceries (FOPAL is next to my usual grocery store) and headed home. Forgetting to stop at UPS and ship that pitcher, which now will just ride in the back of the car until Friday.

When I was initially thinking about my life “when I’m a bachelor” I had assumed that I would eat supper in restaurants fairly often. In fact, I almost haven’t. I think I’ve been out twice for meals (aside from several restaurant meals in Las Vegas of course). So I think I will go out tonight. Report on that tomorrow.


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