Bye Bye Old Cabinets

Let me tell you about my adventure getting rid of my cabinets. It was a weekend jam-packed full of strangeness, social awkwardness, and a little mystery.

When I realized that I was going to be juggling most of the contents from my house in the garage, I had to admit it was past time to get rid of the old cabinets. I was holding on to them because there was a part of me that was (is) paranoid that everything for the new kitchen would fall through and I at least wanted to be able to put back the janky old cabinets rather than have nothing. It was time to be brave and move forward.

The old cabinets were taking up over half of the garage.

I tried to donate them but no one wanted the older, slightly shabby cabinets. I wonder why? I finally posted the cabinets on Freecycle and within a few hours I had emails from people who were interested in them.

A problem developed (of course a problem developed, why would I write a post of how perfectly everything went?). I have my Gmail configured to group “conversations”  which means emails with the same subject line are grouped together like a single email string. This normally works fine until you have emails from multiple strangers and you’re not terribly focused on the emails because you’re ripping up carpet. Let the hijinks begin!

*Sheryl contacted me immediately but only wanted the long cabinet that had been the peninsula. She said she understood that someone might want them all and would I let her know if it was still available the next day?

*Janine was interested in some of the cabinets (the ones that Sheryl did not need) and could pick them up that afternoon? I gave her my address and asked that she email me when she was on her way.

I let Sheryl know that someone was getting the other cabinets and did she still want the peninsula?

At this point I received another email asking if she could pick up the big cabinet that afternoon? This sounded so much like a response to the email I sent to Sheryl that I gave her my address and told her to come on by! Just email me when she was on her way.

I’m going to go ahead and break the suspense right here, it was not Sheryl I responded to. I had now brought a third person to the party and was setting someone up for disappointment and setting myself up to look like a jackass. I’m sorry. Can I say that here? That’s the only word I can think of that describes someone who promises cabinets she doesn’t have and people are probably driving from different states excited about the cabinets they won’t get.

But back to our saga…

Sheryl then emailed and asked if she could pick up the cabinet the next day after 6pm. This was when I realized what I had done and I didn’t even know who was getting what anymore.

In the middle of all this, we pulled the cabinets out to the driveway so they could be easily loaded. A random man driving by stopped and asked if he could have the sink. Sure! I was glad it went somewhere other than the landfill. Random man (who is standing in my personal space and moving forward each time I stepped back) then started telling me that he will take anything and began to list all the items he would take. While he listed these items he eyed my garage and his list happened to correspond with the contents of my garage. At this point I had finally backed up against the dumpster and had no place else to go so I told him OK but didn’t take his number. He didn’t seem to notice that I couldn’t call him without it and left looking rather pleased. I made a mental note to make sure my garage is always closed.

Before I could unknot the pending cabinet debacle, someone came to the house. When I answered the door, she wasn’t even standing at the door. She stood about 12 feet away and just looked at me. I panicked because I didn’t know which person this was so I jumped right into nervous, confusing conversation. “Hi! Which piece do you want?” She just said, “Well, we need to take a look at them.”

Rather than introduce myself in order to hear her name I just started babbling nonsense and took her over to the cabinets.

Her whole family had come along for the ride, an older son and two kids. They didn’t say four words between them. They stood around the cabinets just looking at them from all angles. The longer they quietly assessed them the more nervous I got. Would my old cabinets pass inspection? Were they good enough to find a new home? This just managed to make me chattier and more idiotic. If I’d just shut up for a minute, one of them might actually have been able to tell me who they were.

I thought if I could just figure out if it was the peninsula piece she wanted, I might be able to figure out who it was.

Finally my brother, Doug, who was there to help and act as a deterrant to anyone shifty (he’s built like a line backer) cracked and pulled out the peninsula saying, “I think this will just fit in your truck!” At this point, I believe Doug would have started loading the car himself if it would break the tension and speed these people up.

I was dismayed that he ruined my brilliant strategy but forgave him when they shrugged and opened the back of their truck. My cabinets had passed muster! It was like they had been asked to the prom. I was so proud of them.

They loaded the big piece and began assessing what else they could fit in there. At this point, I was just anxious that they take as much as possible. I made a nervous joke about having to leave the kids in order to fit more cabinets in the car.

Doug told me later that the joke actually came off as kind of creepy.

Hooray! Socially awkward wins again!

The family left with a promise of coming back the next day for the rest of the cabinets.

After they left, I mentioned that they hadn’t emailed me to let me know they were coming so I still didn’t know who they were. That was when Doug wondered aloud if they were even any of the emailers or if they were random people driving by like my sink friend.

This sent me back into the angst-ridden, worry cycle again. I took a chance and emailed Janine to let her know the cabinets had been taken. I figured, if she was the one that had shown up she would respond with, “I know, I’m the one that took them. What’s wrong with you?”

In the middle of the night I realized that if Janine WAS the one that picked up the cabinets, I just told her not to bother coming back the next day for the rest. Awesome!

The next morning, mystery person #3 emailed me apologizing that she wasn’t interested in the cabinets, they were getting a dog instead.

I’d have thought it was weird except I was immensly relieved.

I finally broke down and emailed Janine and confessed that I thought I may have emailed the wrong person. Was she the one who picked up the cabinets yesterday?

Immediate response. No, she was the person who had not gotten the cabinets. So yay! Socially awkward achievement #2. I wasn’t satisfied disappointing her once, I had to contact her again to remind her that she had been disappointed. That’s nice.

We ran an errand in the morning and came back to find more cabinets gone and the two remaining ones had been smashed into pieces. I have no idea what happened. I never saw dour family again or heard from anyone else. I was just so glad the cabinets were finally gone and I wouldn’t have to interact with any strangers any more. I more than filled my quota for making bad impressions for the weekend.

I also apologize for not having any photos of any of this. I was too busy being rude and creepy.

*Names changed because I never actually found out who anyone was.


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3 Responses to Bye Bye Old Cabinets

  1. Barb says:

    I am new to your blog. And I have found you to be so entertaining. The cabinet story, had me giggling out loud. Yes, free cycle is wonderful. I hate things going to landfills as well. But there is nothing free of stress! Social awkward-ness is a mere side effect of the free-ness of it all. You place an ad for free things… and weirdness just finds it way. I have similar tales. Thanks for sharing yours. It got my morning off to a humorous start.

    • LoveThisSpace says:

      Thank you Barb! I’m afraid my social awkwardness might be a side effect of being me. Nothing illustrates this like interacting with new people! It does help me weed out the quality people though. Folks that stick around to get to know me better tend to be good folk.

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