Sunday, 28 June 2009

A mixed week

Ah collectors! We meet again!

A letter arrived on my doormats on Saturday last (is that right Saturday last? Last Saturday ) A letter from the electric people. A bill! For seventeen hundred pounds! I rang them immediately. What is this! I cried. Some mistake surely!

You see on the telly all the while tales of pensioners who are given bills that are wrong and the suffering it causes them. They are too afraid to complain. Well a man who has a barbed wire collection fears no electrician! Once you have accidently sat on a piece of razor wire in a cotton night gown you tend to realise that most other situations in life are not as bad as you might think! So I rang them up immediately (I think I may have already said that [in the last paragraph {I'll just check }])

We discussed my electrical uses of electricity. One small fridge (light not working). One oven (grill not used for safety reasons [mobile collection]) One black and white television. One VHS Video recording recorder. One clock radio. "Is that all Mr Badgerworth?" Oh yes and fourteen antique jukeboxes "Do you have them plugged in much Mr Badgerworth?" Oh of course. All the time! Don't you just love all those flashing lights?

Well apparantly antique jukeboxes use quite a lot of electricity. The bill was not sent in error. I needed seventeen hundred pounds. I would have to sell. gulp! A collection...

I decided to sell my stamp collection. I actually inherited a good part of it from two uncles and a grandmother so I don't really think of it as 'my' collection, although I have obviously, added to it over the years. So on Tuesday I hired a car, filled the boot, and drove to London to an auction house. The man who I saw said that it was too big a collection for him to sell and sent me in the direction of Sotheby's. Too big a collection! What an odd thought! Well the man at Sotheby's was very nice and asked if I could leave the collection with him while he had some people look at the stamps. He said it would take a few days but he would phone me and let me know if he considered it was worth selling as a job lot or splitting up the collection. I said that would be great as it would save me the price of a hotel! I was already pinning my hopes on getting seventeen hundred pounds for the stamps, I didn't need them to cover a night in a hotel too!

Well yesterday I got a call from the nice man at Sotheby's. He asked a few questions about where the stamps came from. Did I have American connections? Well yes, my Grandmother was born in America as was my Uncle. He came over during the war, married and settled down in Kent with my Aunt. Was I familiar with the stamp Benjamin Franklin Z Grill? Or the Treskilling Yellow? Or the Inverted Jenny? Or the...

No no I said! I am a collector not an expert! Why? Is it important I know these things? He replied "No sir. It is not important but I think that if you are not aware of these stamps and about three hundred others, or indeed their value, let alone the lesser, if still not inconsiderate, value of about nine thousand of the other stamps. Plus of course the accumulative values of what appear to be nearly one hundred thousand further stamps in total. As I say sir, if you are not aware then you may want to sit down." I sat down. He thought that by November they would have a catalogue for sale. November! I need to pay my bill by July the 21st! "If you would like to forward me the details of your electricity company sir it would be our privilidge to pay your bill for you as one of our most valued clients" Well that was nice wasn't it!

I was really worried about that money. The Sotheby's man told me I would never have to worry about money again. He said that they could not say for sure how much this collection was worth but that it would fetch, at the least, sixty million pounds.

Not really collectors! Ha Ha Ha Ha! No I was just watching Only Fools And Horses last night on UK Gold and thought you might like a little joke! I mean, my whole story was preposterous. Everyone knows antique jukeboxes don't consume that much electricity!

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Fabulous Holiday!!!!


My how I have missed you all!

I have had a wonderful holiday! A collecting holiday!

I walked between all the tourist information offices in and around Greater Manchester collecting leaflets, but, and here is the fun part, only those that were concerning places within two miles of the actual tourist information office I was standing in at the time! I must say got many an enquiring glance as I consulted my map in the offices, checking which leaflets were collectable.

What a fun time I had! The only downside I suppose was that as the holiday went on the amount of leaflets I collected got quite substantial (I collected 498!) and as I had to carry them all I ended up having to sacrifice other things like my Calor gas stove and my flask and my torch for the good of the collecting cause. But it was all for the best I think in the end because I have another great collection.

Sometimes you have to choose between collecting and other things. How often collecting wins though! I feel sorry for people who don't collect. When my wife went to stay with her friend Michael for a little while I was glad I was a collector. Those four years have flown by. And when she comes back eventually (like a good collection{you cannot rush these things[except a collection of rushes ha ha]}) But no matter what happens in your life you can always...

Collect with me!

Tuesday, 12 May 2009


Hullo again collectors!

Today I'm going to talk about space!

No silly not outer space. Ha Ha. You can't collect planets! Though I sometimes wish you could don't you? When I was twelve I had a dream that I walked from my house to the patch of waste ground at the end of the road. In the sky were nine planets. They were not real but a projection on the sky. Projected from a space-ship bringing a message of peace and friendship from our neighbours beyond the stars. I sometimes wonder if it wasn't a dream. If it happened and everyone but me forgot. Sometimes when I am alone I wonder about that.

But space for collecting is what we are talking about today!

Since my wife moved into her friend Michael's house so she could 'have time to think' four years ago I have been lucky enough to have a collecting room. I converted the spare bedroom into a collecting room!

I have four filing cabinets, two sets of drawers, a tallboy and shelves everywhere! It is a bit of a squeeze! Mrs Hounslow thinks that they will crash through the ceiling but then she thinks that Feliks and Cecylia, the nice Polish couple who moved across the road, are stealing her milk! This is despite the fact that Mrs Hounslow hasn't had milk delivered to her house for twelve years and I fetch her two litres milk from the co-op every Monday, Wednesday and Saturday.

I must admit that my motives for fetching her milk are not entirely unselfish. You would be surprised at how often the design or packaging of the plastic milk bottles change. Yes. You have guessed it! I have quite the collection of two litre milk bottles! At the moment I keep them in the shed with my trowel collection as they are too bulky for the collecting room. I am a bit wary of them being stolen by other collectors (especially the earlier examples and the bottles with special Christmas packaging {I do keep my very favourite of these [which features a very jolly cow in a Santa suit!] in the collecting room} but what can I do?)

A garage is a good space for collecting too! But any room can hold a collection!

Think about where you could keep your collection!

And collect with me!

Thursday, 7 May 2009

Welcome to the wonderful world of collecting

Hello everyone!

I love collecting don't you!

Maybe you haven't started a special collection yet. Maybe you want to join the wonderful community of collectors but are a bit nervous about it all. I know I was!

This blog is going to help you through those difficult first years of collecting. We will do this together!

Anybody can collect. I remember talking to Mrs Hounslow next door about this. I had gone round to try and persuade her to reconsider converting her television from analogue to digital (she says she can't afford it but I know she will miss Alan Titchmarsh when they turn the analogue off! {Anyway that is all solved now because I bought her a digital box for her eightieth [which was last Wednesday!]}) Anyway while I was there {the first time not to give her the birthday present} we got talking about collecting. "It's all right for you Clive" she said "you can get out the house" I thought about this and then came up with a solution. Now Mrs Hounslow has a collection! She collects the leaflets for take-away restaurants that get posted through her door. Now she laughs every time I see her "I've got a new Chinese one" she'll say, or "I love this collection Clive, thank you, and it's funny because I can't eat that foreign stuff because of my gastric tummy" You will have to forgive her mild racism I'm afraid. She is of a different generation.

So you see! Anyone can collect! Even my racist next door neighbour!

Don't worry about the cost. Collecting can be free! I once had a leaf collection. I would stick the leaves to paper with a prit-stick onto paper and then keep them all in a rather natty yellow ring binder! To add a little spice to the collection {no not cinnamon silly!} I would only collect leaves that I had seen being blown by the wind in a North-Easterly direction. I lost count of the many happy hours I sat watching the weather reports at night with my cocoa hoping the Atlantic would send us some gales! That collection really helped me through my divorce, which was otherwise quite a sad and troubling time. Unfortunately when my wife came to pick up her clothes with her friend Michael the leaf collection went missing. Maybe she liked that collection more than she let on and took it with her! Or maybe Michael collected leaves too!

Tempted to start collecting?

Come on.

Collect with me.