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The hassled, red-faced man cruising the neighborhood Saturday morning in the pickup truck is good ol' Bert, of course. It's a Saturday in late summer, which means only one thing in our part of the country – yard sales. That's why the charming lady riding next to him, his wife, Maizie, was wearing a big grin.

"There's one Bert," she said. "On the right. Pull over and park."

It took Maizie almost 20 minutes to work her way up the driveway. There were three boxes of paperback books to go through first, then a shelf full of various knobs.

After getting two paperback books that she hadn't read in several years, there was a little stack of doilies to go through.

"We don't need doilies," Bert said.

"Hush!" said Maizie. "People will think you aren't friendly."

Then she spotted the lamp.

It was only five bucks, and it was a golden brown like a big fat vase and had a nice amber shade on it.

"Oh Bert," Maizie said. "It's a lot like the one we used to have. Remember that one? It used to sit on the end table closest to the door to your den. I really miss that lamp. Let's get this one, Bert. It'll remind us of the one we used to have, OK?"

"It is kinda nice," Bert said.

Maizie bought it and Bert loaded it in the pickup, along with the new ironing board, game cartridge for the grandkids, plant pots for the geraniums, dishes for Maizie's dish collection, a serving spoon holder from Niagara Falls, and a five-gallon milk can to put magazines on.

When they got home and were unloading, Bert noticed Maizie's initials on the bottom of the new table lamp. Didn't the Johnson's buy this from them in their yard sale about 10 years ago?

Oh well, nothing shines like a new lamp, and Bert might be tired of yard saling, but he is still gentleman enough not to spoil it for Maizie.

Brought to you by the new book "Home Country,"at www.slimrandles.com.


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