Favorite Small Things: August 2023

Late, but carrying on . . . below are my favorite small things from August 2023.

Art in the Garbage

On an otherwise routine morning, I sifted through a box of garbage and found this. A Delacroix (Michel not Eugène), and I believe it’s original, with provenance on the back.

Michel Delacroix painting found in garbage

Then I found this. Original and signed. Can’t make out the name, but look at the car. It’s old.

Signed painting found in garbage - pier scene

Later in the day, I returned to the garbage, and this had been added. A Nat Lowell etching of the NYC skyline. Signed.

Nat Lowell NYC Skyline found in garbage

And then this Welling lithograph of the NYC skyline from a later era, 1979.

Welling NYC skyline found in garbage

Even though I generally pick through garbage to source for my eBay store, we kept all of these pieces, and we cherish them.

A Sack for a Bike on a Car

Bike in a bag on a car

Post-pandemic, things on cars still excite me (here’s the list). And this was an unexpected treat spotted in New Jersey.

A Car Wash Jingle

The lyrics are simple: “Car wash, car wash . . . car wash, car wash,” and there I was bopping around in the parking lot.

A 50 Cent Dish

Dish I paid 50 cents for

I can’t remember the last time I bought something that cost less than a dollar. To type this heading, I searched for the “cents” symbol on my keyboard; there isn’t one.

Five of these dishes for 50 cents a piece at my favorite church thrift store. I eyed them during multiple visits, but it was time to act when the entire store was half off and they were clearing the shelves for fall inventory faster than I could shop.

I love these dishes. They make finger food fun.

Discounted Fine Dining

Heard about this from All the Hacks, and haven’t yet tried it out completely, but this new app, inKind, allows you to purchase a “pass” at a discount to use at restaurants in your area. And at least in NYC, the restaurants are good! — really good! — Michelin star even. I stacked the All the Hacks $25 bonus with Chase credit card’s $150 back on $250 offer (check your Chase credit card offers!) and purchased a $300 pass for $259, and therefore ended up paying only $109 for $325 to use at Gramercy Tavern for our anniversary dinner. My referral code here will get you a $25 bonus (<– affiliate link).

A De Staëlian Coincidence

Below is a work by my new favorite artist, Itzchak Tarkay. I’ve been driving all over the tri-state area for his art because I love the way it makes me feel. This one came from an estate in New Jersey, and I duked it out the night before in the online auction, dollar by dollar, over Carvel pistachio ice cream with marshmallow and hot fudge. I won.

Itzhak Tarkay lithograph

So I picked up my art (it’s huge) and then headed to nearby Tenafly to a Vietnamese restaurant where one of those God forsaken lantern flies landed on my leg while I was eating shrimp pho at an outdoor table, and I screamed. And so that ended.

Mostly recovered, I decided to stop off at the thrift store in Piermont on my way home. On the wall was this. A nice coincidence. Like when I heard Blue Bayou in my head and then there it was IRL.

Maimon lithograph

A Cat on a Dress

Fairly grumpy because I had to attend an early-morning meeting that could have been a six-sentence email, I emerged from the shower to see sweet Izzy sitting on my dress. And that made all the difference.

Cat on dress

Thank you for reading! What small things did you see in August?

  1. Nothing warms my heart more than finding that a cat has our entire bed to relax on but they’ve chosen to lounge on the clothing I tossed on the bed instead. It happens every time. The only time they don’t lay directly on top of our clothes is when there aren’t any clothes on the bed. It’s like they’re saying they want to be near us, even when they’re not near us.

  2. I know nothing about art, but from the sounds of it these were special pieces someone threw into the garbage!? I’m shocked. What a waste, if anything they could have been donated.

    I am curious what you mean when you say you sift through the trash. Do you go to dumpsters behind shops to see what they have tossed? This intrigues me so much, I watch videos of people who do this and I love it. The things they find, brand new in perfect condition blows my mind.

    The sack around the bike feels excessive me, it made me laugh. But what do I know, maybe that’s a $7000 bike and they want to keep the wheels clean?

    Love the photo of your baby on your dress. <3

    1. Thanks so much for stopping by and your lovely comment!

      So I live in an apartment building and there is an area outside designated for large garbage (discarded furniture etc) that is picked up about once per month by the garbage truck. Over the years, I have contributed to this pile (just last week, we discarded what we called our “covid organizer” – a standing desk that held our masks and sanitizers and such—someone picked it up within the hour). I’ve found power tools, tennis rackets, and now this beautiful art, the first painting I believe to be quite valuable along with the Nat Lowell etching, which I think is somewhat valuable.

      I’ve heard that dumpsters outside college dorms are a great place to look for discarded items (after move-out day), but I’ve never done anything other than my own building and the curb. My Manhattan apartments were half furnished with stuff that was discarded in the communal laundry rooms. 🙂 It’s a good feeling to get something for free, and to give it another life.

      The bike sack is funny right!

Say some things.