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Surprising finds

Every now and then I find something useful just lying on the side of the road or in the trash. It's amazing what people will discard.

We live in a college town and students are notorious for load lightening when it's time to move back home for the summer. You could furnish an entire house and with not too bad stuff, just by cherry picking what is left on the sidewalk.

I once picked up a satchel containing a perfectly good Craftsman 2-hp router complete and some decent bits. Not too long ago, I found a set of carving burrs. There are several different sizes and shapes, several mandrels intended to be drill driven and some various knobs and holding devices to be mounted on the outboard end. There is a maker's name on several of the pieces but all an online search revealed is that they are German made and discontinued many years ago.

Once, when we were much younger, my wife and I along with our friend Charlie were driving home at the end of the day. Charlie was sitting in the back seat and he kept complaining of a horrible smell. After much discussion, it was decided that my old sneakers were the culprit. So I slipped them off and tossed them out by the side of the road. But the unpleasant olfactory experience was unabated and further examination revealed an old sandwich under the front seat, so out went the sandwich. At that point it dawned on me that I had tossed out a perfectly good pair of shoes and I raced to recover them. To my relief they were still there but when I picked them up, I immediately noticed that someone had taken the laces. Maybe they were the wrong size for the finder. Or maybe they were not such great shoes after all.


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