Saturday, March 24, 2018

From The Archives: An Old Thrift Store Find Story from 2013

Originally aired on DTM-Cast Episode #12 (September 29, 2013)

I actually wanted to talk something I saw last week at the thrift store a couple days ago, because I thought it was really funny.

So I'm going to the local Value Village - a thrift store up in Canada - and I'm checking out what they have on sale on their display case. And what I see are three Gamecubes, all lined up, all black Gamecubes, and all of them have a price tag of $39.99... plus tax, obviously. Now here's the kicker - and I wish I had my camcorder or at least my fake flip video thing to catch this on video, but I didn't and I figured they wouldn't let me anyway - there're three Gamecubes, all of them cost about forty bucks plus tax.

One of those Gamecubes had a Game Boy Player underneath. Game Boy Player is the peripheral that lets you play Game Boy games, Classic, Color, Advance... Game Boy.

So you had this one Gamecube equipped with a Game Boy Player, and it's marked at the exact same price as the other two Gamecubes with no GBPs installed. I thought that was funny... of course, I didn't say anything because I figure if I did they'd mark up the price even more and it has happened once or twice... there's weird inconsistent pricing policies at these thrift stores. Such as one time where I saw they had a couple Nintendo 64s on the shelf and they were both the same model. Both came with a/c adaptor, none of them had the jumper pak... which is the thing that's in that expansion port of the N64 and was basically a placeholder for an ram expansion pak... but if you'd didn't have the jumper or the expansion, the N64 was essentially a brick; it wouldn't work.

And I didn't know that at first; because I bought an N64 from a Value Village, had all the cables, and the controllers... and I couldn't get it to work because I thought it was broken and it didn't work. So I brought it back, got a refund, but when I bought another N64 from the usual vendor, I saw that that console had a jumper and the other didn't. And that's when I figured that the jumper was necessary... so if you're hunting for N64 consoles, check the expansion port. If it's empty, you'll need to get a jumper or expansion pak... there's a little hunting tip right there.

So where was I? Oh yeah; I see these two N64s at the Value Village; no jumpers, no A/V cables, no controllers, just the power... one N64 cost 12.99... the second N64, and I shit you not, cost 19.99. Whether that was a typo or not, or a mislabel, I don't know, but I thought that was fucking hilarious. Just absolutely hysterical.

Again, I said nothing because I didn't want to give these clowns any ideas... but yeah, Value Villages and thrift stores in general, lots of hidden gems and fun stuff to be found there at times, but be weary because those are usually the scourge of game relics... the flea market, I find, is a much more reliable source of retro tat, especially when you're familiar with the vendors and you have that nice buyer/seller relationship. It's a nice thing to have sometimes.

The Modern Take:

These days, Value Village and other thrift stores have gotten smarter when it comes to selling old video game tat, as some of them are much more pricier compared to when this story was told. Nowadays, a Gamecube with Game Boy Player and all the usual accessories would probably sell for about sixty bucks.

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