?(As if you hadn't noticed.)
The non-retail segment of the economy has exploded.
Driven by other economic elements, and enabled by such phenomena as social-networking sites and the craigslisting of America, the buying and selling of pre-owned goods has got to be--I truly believe--one of the biggest trends going right now.
The concept of one-man's-trash-is-another-man's-treasure is as old as man himself, I'm sure.
But with all the deep-down-value shifting going on right now in the American collective psyche ("do I REALLY need to hang onto this item I never use?" "Is it really THAT important that I 'buy new' when I want something?" "I still spend, but only when it's a screamin' deal,"), the garage-sale trail, in all its old and new manifestations, is taking a different turn.
Where it'll land us, I don't know.
But I do know?this:
In the year or so since I first started picking up on more energy coming from what I dubbed "the people's underground economy," it has picked up steam at the speed of...well, you name it. Sound? Light? Facebook?
A few symptoms of the consumer attitude-change that I see coming about (if not already here) as the My Stuff For Sale trend draws in more and more practitioners.
Finding the best.//Finding the best deal.
The pleasure of buying it new.//The pleasure of not having to buy it new.
Pride in being able to afford it.//Pride in knowing how to haggle for it.
Getting good at telling yourself "I deserve it."//Getting good at telling yourself "I can live without it."
Taking part of a day to go shopping.//Taking part of a day to go selling (whether from the front lawn or from your computer.)