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Monday, June 13, 2011

This just in!!...Mixer's Panties in a Twist....Sends Craig's List Fist!

Urban Archeology Field Reporter, Bob Deakin, is on assignment and sends in this story of revenge, non-violence and intrigue from the tag sale trail:

Traffic backs up in front of the Davenport home.
(UA) - Police responded to a disturbance at 111 Northrup Street early Saturday morning when a traffic jam formed in front of the Davenport home as dozens of people showed up for a much-anticipated tag sale. Police were called by the homeowner, who claimed he had announced no such event.

“I never arranged for a tag sale for today or any day,” said angry homeowner Vincent Davenport to police, who were forced to direct traffic in the rural neighborhood for several hours. “Why would I invite a bunch of strangers to my house on a Saturday morning?”

Mr. Davenport first opens the door to unexpected taggers.
Davenport was initially awakened by knocks on his door and startled to find several dozen people milling about in front of his house. When they refused to leave he grew angry and returned with a baseball bat to scare them away, only to receive several offers for the bat and frequent requests to pass out numbers. This only proved to heighten Davenport's anger; "What the hell do they want numbers for?...and no this bat isn't for sale!"

Respondents produced an ad in the local newspaper showing a tag sale slated for 7 am at that address on that day, which police took into evidence. Several attendees also produced a printout of the notice posted on Craigslist for the same event, which police quickly discarded as fraud.

The disturbance erupted at approximately 6:55 am when a prompt group of  'taggers' - veteran tag sale aficionados - or 'Early Birds' as they are known in the trade (at this hour), arrived to peruse the wares at the Davenport home at the start of their well organized day.

Tagger Hank Zeppo was typical of those who showed up.

Mr. Davenport angrily confronts the taggers with a baseball bat.
“We were following our itinerary through the southeastern quadrant of town – based on the rising sun – before moving on to northeast quadrant number two at 41°31′33″N 73°21′39″W. From here we move on to central sectors one and two, then to the north and west, as is normal for our coverage pattern launch at dawn on Saturdays.”

These experts come well prepared for the weekend missions armed with food, water and generic soda rations, GPS devices, dubiously-claimed amounts of cash (depending on the item discovered) and small slips of paper known as 'checks,' formerly used as a form of currency now used only by women over 50 at grocery stores.

Veteran tagger Ray Hornig was none too pleased with the goings on at 111 Northrup.

“Jannie and I were all set to start here as part of a busy day of tagging and we get this,” he said, incredulously. “I don't know what's going on but we were going to designate 20 to 30 minutes to this place and 15 to the next and now we've got to make adjustments on the fly all day. This world is going to hell in a hen basket.”

Other, more astute taggers, were quick to correct Ray's poorly executed cliché to 'hell in a hand basket,' which still makes no sense, but his point was made.

Tagger Justin Mitchell, whose first name belies his age – estimated to be in his late 60s – intends to approach city hall to crack down on the tag sale ordinance in Springfield.

“We must have an ordinance for police to identify permitted tag sales,” he stressed. “My wife and I came here looking for Wacky Packages, Partridge Family and M*A*S*H memorabilia, as any tagger worth his salt would expect to find in a neighborhood like this. We just heard a minute ago he didn't plan this sale but since we're all here and traffic's backed up can't he just pop open the garage door and let us have a quick look around?”

The ad printed in the local newspaper (and allegedly on Craig's List) welcomed early birds and boasted of vintage clothing, Hammond organs, HDTVs, cocktail glass sets, 1970s memorabilia, classic furniture from the 1960s and much more.

All anyone got was disappointment.

“I've been searching for a Hammond B-3 organ for the last ten years and I thought today might be my lucky day,” said Troy Dufiss, oblivious to the fact that there was in fact, no tag sale at the house. “Is he going to open that garage or am I going to have to open it for him?”
Mr. Davenport continued to guard the garage throughout the day.

After several hours of research police determined that the announcement of the tag sale was a hoax concocted by an acquaintance of the homeowner. It turns out Ed Maloney, bartender at the local tavern, “One For The Road,” submitted the advertisements as an act of revenge on the part of Mr. Davenport.

Davenport and his wife – both regulars at the tavern – were there earlier in the week and gave Maloney yet another in a series of extremely poor tips after spending several hours at the establishment.

“What comes around goes around,” is all Maloney is reported to have said to police during questioning.

Mr. Davenport declined to press charges but Springfield Police Sargent Duke Morris confirmed that several of the taggers filed complaints. Asked how residents can prevent such scams in the future, Sargent Morris gave only one bit of advice.

“Tip your bartender.”

Thanks, Bob, for that sterling report. We now take you back to our regularly scheduled blog....already in progress.

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