One Hundred Dollars of Flea Market Madness!
by Josh Sullivan
The flea market is one of the best places on Earth. Once you make your way past junk sold by rednecks and part-time carnies, you’re going to find all sorts of things that make you relive your childhood. This column focuses on all the great crap that I bought for around a hundred smackers:
A blue My Song Maker with 8 special sound effects
This is a keyboard guitar of sorts. You can play all your hit piano tunes and still pretend to be Bill and Ted. The eight special effects are: Machine Gun 1, Machine Gun 2, Bombing 1, Bombing 2 (can’t get enough of those wacky bombing noises), Dual Tone, TV Game, Animal Sound (sounds more like a dying robot), and Rifle Gun. With all of these sounds, you can bet your sorry ass that you’ll be getting all the action from here to Belarus. No more playing air guitar for you, gramps! You’re going to be rocking out faster than you can say, “Wyld Stallyns!” All of your friends will be so jealous when they see you walking down the street with this beautiful contraption. Who knew that by adding a handle and a strap to a lowly keyboard that it would make you the cat’s pajamas for owning one of these? I sure didn’t until I bought one. Watch out, though! There are some ruffians who get jealous of people with keytars so make sure to use it as a weapon as well. Swing it like a cricket mallet and you can become more of a bad ass than Bea Arthur. You might get on the news, too.
Itchy and Scratchy from Series 4 of The Simpsons Toy Line
They bite and fight and bite and fight and they’re the only Simpsons toys I bought so far from the newer line of plastic wonders. I wish I would’ve gotten all the toys as they came out but I was too lazy to go to the mall and be trendy to pick up any of them. So, I buy one at the flea market and I automatically get thrown back into the days when I was buying all the X-Men toys and thinking I was too legit to quit for winning a Beast figure in some comic shop contest. Itchy’s the mouse and Scratchy’s the cat and they’re a modern day Tom and Jerry, but a hundred times more violent and funny. I didn’t open this package so I don’t have anything fun to say about the actual playability of them. I gave it away as a gift and now I’m just left with this picture of Itchy and Scratchy from series 4 of The Simpsons toy line to keep me company. If you want to help a deprived young lad out, mail your toys to P.O. Box 773, St. Petersburg, FL, 33731. I especially want the Comic Book Guy playset from the same line and Fisher-Price Little People.
A ton of name patches like “Chico”, “Alf” and “Foreman Alberto”
My pal Bred and I came across Workshirt Wally (implied name; his real name was probably Scooter) and he had a nice box of fun name patches for real cheap. Oddly enough, Wally didn’t have “Josh” or “Bred” but he had some very obscure names like “Ismael”, “Gulley”, “Throckey”, and “Pop” (like that fat pudge who ran the malt shop from the Archie comics). I ended up buying about 20 different names and then giving them out to people so they could pretend they had a better one than their parents’ gave them. I think “Foreman Alberto” is not as good as “Delores ‘Mumblemouth’ Nacholicker”, though. I think that would be too big to fit on a name patch anyway.
Bobble Heads and Toys
The famed founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken has been immortalized in a rubbery, big-headed figurine that definitely lets girls know who the #1 sex symbol of the 20th Century was. One must wonder how he holds down a piece of his savory meat with his head bouncing around so much. Who am I kidding? The Colonel is dead.
Archie and Jughead from Archie Comics
Archie is a red-headed bozo who gets all the ladies and Jughead is a skinny jerk who eats a lot and has the coolest hat in the world. I remember in one comic the principal, Mr. Weatherbee, told the Jugs that he couldn’t wear his hat in school anymore so he became really emo and had thoughts about shooting the incoherent janitor, Svenson. Archie is the biggest player of his kind since Ron Howard. He always has Betty and Veronica chasing after him even when he slips up and talks about his letter sweater too much or when he tells them of his fantasies of driving naked through Riverdale in his rotten jalopy that cost five dollars and some Bazooka Joe comics. That stupid car was always breaking down.
Red Rocker and Blue Bomber from Rock ’em Sock ’em Robots
The Rock’em Sock’em Robots were a part of a lot of our lives when we were younger. I remember knocking someone’s block off when I was four and that jumpstarted my love for robots that has manifested into a less-than-healthy obsession nowadays. The toys actually bobble at their waist to better simulate that they’re fighting each other. Truly, this was the crown jewel of the lot of flea market goods.
Alf How could you go to the flea market and not buy a product about ALF (Alien Life Form)? You just can’t. Last time I went to the flea market, I bought an old ALF stuffed doll and a ton of unopened packs from his trading card line. This bobble head is good for pretending that it’ll eat cats, which is perfect when I get pissed off at my Satanic feline and I remark to her, “ALF will eat you if you keep biting me, you wretched beast!”
Egon Spengler from The Real Ghostbusters
So many of us ’80s kids went bananas over all of the Ghostbusters stuff that was thrown at us like candy from heaven. I had a bunch of the toys and I still don’t know what happened to them. I think real ghosts took them away from my tiny hands. Egon was a true dork but somehow real lovable. After everyone’s favorite, Slimer, Egon was way up there on people’s lists mainly because he had such a funny name. Go run around your neighborhood screaming “EGON SPENGLER!” real loud and you’re sure to bring attention to yourself mighty fast. You might get attacked by an unruly dog, too.
A Tick action figure
Ben Edlund’s famed comic character got turned into a cartoon on Fox and then had so many cool toys from the show released. I bought the Tick so it could compliment my other bug-related toys like the Honey Bee Pez dispenser from Honey Nut Cheerios and one of the Go-Bots. Wait, that isn’t a bug. Nevermind.
Some odd robot toy from Power Rangers
I was real hooked on those Mighty Muffin Perfect Strangers. I never had any of the toys, though, and the only reason I got this one was because it was a cool little robot and it helped in the 3 for $5 deal Capt. Toy Merchant was having at the time.
3 Robot toys from McDonald’s
Good ol’ Mickey D’s is always there to have some interesting toys and start kids out young on addictions of wanting to collect stuff. I bought some of these robot toys to go with other robot toys from McDonald’s my mom sent me one time. I hope they all come to life one night and take over the world. It would make for some great news and then I wouldn’t have to go to work. Hmm…nah, scratch that. I’d probably have to work in a evil robot death camp building lawn chairs or something if that happened.
Two issues of Cracked Magazine
Cracked is the competition to Mad Magazine. I liked Cracked better at times when I was a kid because it was funnier to say than Mad, it had fatter versions of Spy vs. Spy, and the bumbling mascot for the mag looked like me if I was a janitor. Ah…memories.
I’ve seen the Akira anime movie more than any other film and I have about half of the comics when they were printed in color. It was cool to find this and it was even cooler buying it off some old lady who didn’t think comics should be funny, rather they should just be filled with superheroes. Dumb fool.
New Mutants #2
Back in the day when I was obsessed like there was no tomorrow about Marvel’s mutants, this would’ve made me piss my pants. I just got it so I would have 4 books to make $1. Fuck you, Marvel. I could’ve saved so much money if I wouldn’t have bought X-Men comics or any of its 3 trillion spin-off books.
This is my favorite book of all time. It’s 1153 pages and I’ve read it ten times. Now, I have my own copy instead of going to the library to mooch off them. I was so crazy about Stephen King books and I read most of his books before I started making comics and my mind went to mush. I wish I read as much as I used to. Now, me dumb.
A collection of Get Fuzzy comic strips
I’ve never heard of this series but I bought it anyway. I haven’t read it yet so I can’t write anything better than this line.
2 Calvin and Hobbes books
Ever wonder what Calvin would be like when he grew up? He turned into me. I always think of myself as a combination of Calvin, Bart Simpson, and Dennis the Menace but I always took to Cal more because he was a better dreamer. I miss the strip being in the paper everyday but it’s cool that there are so many collections of them. Buy them all.
3 collections of Fox Trot comic strips
I really like Fox Trot, too. I haven’t read the newspaper comics in so long so I don’t even know if it’s still around but three collections for three bucks isn’t a bad deal.
3 of the 4 Harry Potter books
I saw the movie and loved it so I bought these when I came across them. I’ll probably get around to reading them when I turn 70.
3 of the Captain Underpants series, The Witch Next Door, and The Time Book
I really like kids’ books because most of the time they’re a lot better than books for older people. Reading stuff like this makes me happy because it takes me back to when I was learning to read and it shows me that books are fun. I’ll be a lazy bum and probably not read these until I’m an old man, as well.
TMNT 2: The Secret of the Ooze
I love the Ninja Turtles! In a backlash against them at one time, though, I remember seeing this movie in the theatres and telling my dad I just wanted to see Vanilla Ice. I was too cool for the Turtles. Now, both Vanilla and the Turtles are too cool for me. They should’ve made a Vanilla Ice turtle. He would’ve been the only one with slick hair or to have hair at all, for that matter. This movie wasn’t as good as the first one. It’s still neat to see a bunch of freaks fighting and talking about pizza all the time. Right now, I can’t really remember too much about it. I know that there was a different April O’ Neill in it and that Casey Jones seemed to vanish, most likely to go get a haircut or buy some nachos.
Meet John Doe
A movie from 1941 with Barbara Stanwyck, Gary Cooper and directed by Frank Capra. Stanwyck is my favorite actress and this is one of my favorite movies so I was really happy to find this tape for a couple bucks. I was even happier to see that the guy selling it was Anson Williams (Potsie from “Happy Days”). Man, I wish it really was him. He could’ve adopted me.
A collection of three short W.C. Fields movies
W.C. Fields hated kids and drank a lot. He’s a pretty funny guy.
Max Headroom: The Original Story
I thought Max Headroom was the greatest thing since M.U.S.C.L.E. Men so I snatched up this tape real quick. It tells of the origin of Max, played by Matt Frewer. I popped it in and was real excited. I then wanted to kill myself three minutes into this piece of shit because I could’ve told a better story by mumbling ideas in my sleep. I should drop this tape off of a very tall building.
A Boy and His Blob: Trouble in Blobolonia
I always wanted this game because one of my friends had it when I was a kid. I just remembered that you would feed this stupid white blob different flavored jelly beans and then it would change into stuff like a ladder or an umbrella. Such an absurd idea is a great selling tool to a kid. I ended up buying this game and realizing that I’m not very good at it. It’s more fun not trying to beat it but making the blob fall off cliffs or turning him into a bowling ball and throwing him really far away so you can escape the annoying white chunk.
I am convinced that Kirby was the offspring of the blob from A Boy and His Blob. Kirby is a big fat marshmallow who can do weird things with his body and he seems really mad about a lot of things, possibly due to his childhood of growing up with such a lame fucking blob for a dad. I love this game! This is a lot of fun and I think was one of the last Nintendo games as Super NES and more powerful systems were appearing around the time it came out. It’s so much more fun than crappy games like X-Men or Goonies 2.
Back to the Future II & III
BTTF is one of my favorite things. I bought this game because I’m a sucker for anything dealing with the film and I figured it had to be better than the first one for Nintendo, where I could never get past Lou’s Cafe. Damn you, Biff! BTTF II & III is indeed better but a lot more confusing. There’s all of these creatures that you have to battle that don’t have anything to do with time travel or Michael J. Fox. After failing miserably over and over at this game, I wanted to punch everything and everyone. It’s definitely something that’ll get you irate beyond your wildest dreams.
Well, that was a pretty long write-up for only a hundred bucks worth of stuff. I love the amazing deals you can get at flea markets so go to one this weekend and spend your paycheck. You’ll probably be sad when you can’t pay your rent but you’ll be content with having just bought a Skeletor toy or an accessory for a tractor.
Go check out http://www.joshcomics.com for more pics of my toys, joys, and ploys.