As I explained in the previous post in this series, in 2013 you will be able to re-use calendars from certain past years. Since there is no possible way to get an actual 2013 calendar — it’s a year that hasn’t even happened yet — the savvy date-conscious citizen should invest in a past calendar that is ALREADY GUARANTEED TO EXIST. Such as this one:
WATCHTOWER 1985 CALENDAR partialy used ($14.00 on eBay)
For sale a Calendar as picture and title in fair, condition has notes on pages for many months these are neat and in the date area.Cover is clean
Simple, quick, to the point. My immediate reactions:
• What do the calendar pages look like? I guess larger versions of the photos on the cover? Clearly this is a Jehovah’s Witnesses calendar, so perhaps those are Jehovah’s Witnesses from around the world? Other years in this same series show covers without photos, only clip-art. A later year appears to contain photographs of the Holy Land.
• What is the value of a “partialy used” calendar? I mean, on one hand, the dates are the dates. You don’t expend the days once they’re past; you can still get information from a calendar that has been used before. That is the ENTIRE POINT of what we are doing here. So it shouldn’t affect you.
• On the other hand, if you want to make your OWN notes on this calendar, you might not be able to, because the prior owner might have already made a note on whatever date you were going to. So, for example, you might go to write “Colonoscopy” on March 14, only to find that there is ALREADY a note on March 14 about something ELSE, something that happened YEARS AGO to somebody you NEVER MET.
• This provides some potential for confusion; you might forget about writing your own note, and then when March 14 rolls around, you might remember that there was SOMETHING you were supposed to do, and go to check the calendar and then end up driving down to pick up your family portrait photos from Montgomery Ward until you remember, after hours of fruitlessly circling in some random parking lot, that Montgomery Ward went out of business in 2001. So that is a danger.
• There is a fine line somewhere between a consumer product sold on the basis of its utility (such as a calendar for the current or a theoretical upcoming year) versus one sold on the premise of its “collectibility” or perhaps some sentimental value. A 1985 calendar is probably firmly in the latter camp, which explains why someone can attempt to charge $14.00 for a calendar THAT SOME STRANGER ALREADY WROTE ON.
• But I wonder if this theory breaks down quickly with calendars, because there are plenty of 2012 and 2011 and 2010 calendars on eBay (i.e., useless calendars) for amounts that are probably closer to full retail price than clearance prices. Most calendars in general have some theme, such as "hot babes with golf clubs" or "whatever this is, I honestly can’t tell, wait, it is pictures of doll clothes made from napkins, what the heck, who would make a calendar like this, only a crazy person", and at its worst, a wall calendar is just 12 nice pictures on whatever theme. You can look at the pictures and enjoy them, and ignore the people who ask you why you have an out-of-date calendar on your wall, like it’s some kind of CRIME. Why do they even CARE, it’s not their HOUSE. Unless it’s your wife in which case WHY CAN’T YOU REALIZE THAT MARRIAGE IS ABOUT COMPROMISE.
• The seller who is offering the Jehovah’s Witnesses calendar above also has a TON of other vintage Jehovah’s Witnesses publications. Did someone die? Is it an estate sale?
• Some of the other calendars on offer are also “partially used,” others “brand new.” No real logic here — 1984 has notes “on the last 8 months”; 1986 is “brand new.” Perhaps the owner got tired of making notes on the calendar? Writing notes doesn’t DO ANYTHING ANYWAY, the dates STILL COME, no matter HOW many times you write “stop stop stop stop stop stop stop please stop” on the calendar pages
• I don’t want this particular calendar; for me it doesn’t even really have kitsch value. But I am curious to see what those notes say. I’m 100% certain that they are completely uninteresting. But right now — with them unseen — I can imagine that they say anything. I can imagine that they are the nuclear launch codes.
• Why would someone try to sell a “partialy used” calendar without bothering to take a picture of the used portions? Maybe the seller figures if you want this calendar — if you’re in the market for a 1985 Jehovah’s Witnesses calendar — you want it no matter what. It doesn’t matter what the notes say because what are you gonna do? Go buy someone else’s 1985 Jehovah’s Witnesses calendar? SORRY, JERK. WE GOT THE ONLY GAME IN TOWN.
• What would it be like to be the kind of person who wants a “partialy used” 1985 Jehovah’s Witnesses calendar no matter what?
• Quite frankly, I think the world will never know, because I think that person does not exist, and that this calendar will never sell.
• Browsing this seller’s other items, I found the following listing for a VHS tape:
ERIC and ERNIE AUTOBIOGRAPHY of MORECAMBE & WISE
This is part of my personal collection that I am selling due to ill health.What we have here is an item as picture its an AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF ONE OF THE BEST TEAMS EVER ON BRITISH T.V. They entertained the BRITISH PEOPLE for years there christmas shows were famous just read and think back to thoes days.SADLY ERIC AND ERN ARE GONE FROM OUR LIVES NOW BUT THE MEMORY LIVES FOR EVER.
• Oh, God. For some reason I had pictured this seller as some kind of flea market clearance operation, gathering huge stacks of dusty old books, hastily photographing them, and putting them online without any information just to try and liquidate some stranger’s estate as simply as possible.
• BUT IT’S WORSE THAN THAT. The estate in question is THE SELLER’S OWN. The seller is gathering huge stacks of dusty old books, hastily photographing them, and putting them online without any information just to try and liquidate HIS OR HER OWN estate as simply as possible.
• Can you IMAGINE? This person is shuffling from room to room, wearily hauling a stack of moldering paper from some dank storeroom or basement or attic over to a table by the computer, setting out every old calendar and church directory one by one, snapping a single picture of each, then typing a half sentence into the eBay listing software that they’ve been using to sell tour guides for years.
• Between two dusty volumes, they find a ticket for a 1963 lecture, and stop for a moment, blinking silently.
• The person hesitates, a shaking hand hovering above the ticket for a moment, then carefully sets the slip of yellow paper onto the table by itself. Memories of the lecture return unbidden, full of enthusiasm and religious fervor and health and happiness. It was a time of inspiration. It was a time of unlimited possibility. It was a time of youth.
• “Maybe someone will want this,” the person says to nobody, and snaps the picture.