neighborly neighbors

So, I was grabbing something out of the mini yesterday, when I noticed our neighbor was digging around his garage. He had recently had a garage sale, as they are putting their place up for sale. I said hello, and we exchanged pleasantries, and then he pulled out a corkscrew from a box and asked if it was worth anything.

I told him it was, and asked how much he wanted for it. He simply handed it to me, and said, "just take it."

Of course I thanked him, where upon he said there was another one that that, "was even more mechanical," that he would try and find for me.

Pretty darn neighborly if you ask me. I placed the Williamson Burgundy in my pocket, and headed back over to the mini, grabbed what I had originally intended to grab, and headed back inside.

I can only dream about what the other one is, a hootch owl? tucker? royal club?

small martinis

Early on in my corkscrew collecting, I was looking for a housewarming gift for two friends who collected martini shakers. So, I figured I would go out and find them one they didn’t have. I hit the antique malls hoping to pick one up. And, there I saw the piece I was after, sitting innocently amongst all the other martini shakers, barware, and the like in what has affectionately been referred to as the "alcoholic’s case" at an antique mall in Chicago.

I asked if the case could be opened, and I grabbed for the piece. I looked at it closely, and pulled off the top. WHAT!!!??? There is a corkscrew inside!!!!! Of course, I had happened upon the Napier Miniature Martini Shaker with corkscrew (apparently at that point in my collecting, I had skipped that page in Don’s book).

I bought the piece fully knowing that I would be keeping the corkscrew, and would have to find another gift for our friends (I did, bytheway).

A few months later, I picked up the same Napier piece in the original box–with instructions and advertising card. However, thru trades and deals, somehow I ended up WITHOUT a "bar baby" (as it was originally marketed).

Feeling a lack in my life due to an inability to make very very small martinis, I have been placing snipe bids each time one of these little guys come up, and one finally hit. A bar baby is coming back to the collection! Now, if I can only find a very very very small bottle of gin and vermouth.

‘nother Thomason

I was emailed last night an offer for another Thomason corkscrew. I looked at the pictures, and decided to go for it. One of the pictures is below, and it definitely will make a nice addition to the collection. And, given that I have a 4 Thomason’s currently… it will allow for one of them to become trade bait (Tommy ???).

The lovely and I will be heading to San Francisco this weekend for a belated birthday celebration. The plan? Go from wine bar to wine bar to wine bar to SF Giants game to wine bar to SF Giants game to wine bar…

cork growers corkscrew

I had noticed this interesting advertising corkscrew on eBay, placed a snipe, and forgot about it. Well, today it ended, and apparently, the snipe went thru. A cool looking piece as it is an advertisement for G.LOMBARD LTD, CORK GROWERS, 2 CHURCH STREET. MINORIES, LONDON.

I wonder if Don will be emailing a corkscrew (or two) in trade for it…

Portsmouth and Home

The lovely and I left Friday afternoon for Portsmouth, NH where two of our dear friends got married (to each other). It was a lovely setting, a great time, and there was much wine consumed.

I dropped the lovely off at the airport this morning, as she is headed to California for a few days, and I hit the Topsfield, MA Antique Show… nothing worth buying unless you are in the market for one of those grapevine corkscrews that often gets billed as Rare, Ancient, or Ugly.

Speaking of corkscrews, I have been offered a painted syroco clown, but the offer-er wants a U-Neek in exchange. I will have to mull this one over.

Also, Tommy’s Mah Jong set hit 426$, I still can’t bring myself to take a chance on one, but it is nice to see that his investment paid off. He also now has 10 ross pigs…not a blue one, but 10 others!

I am off to make dinner, and contemplate ways to celebrate Memorial day. Golf maybe?

Happy Birthday, Rena Rosenthal, and a couple of pics

Last night the lovely and I went out to celebrate my birthday. Sushi was the meal of choice and we started the evening off with a "lycheetini". Yes, a martini made with a lychee nut/juice etc. It was actually quite delicious. Sushi in all shapes and sizes and a nice California Sauv Blanc rounded out the meal.

There were thoughtful cards and gifts from the lovely, and next week we fly to San Francisco to really celebrate my turning 35 for the 6th time.

On to Rena Rosenthal… As we all know, Wayne Meadows is writing a book on Austrian (not Australian) figural corkscrews. So, corkscrews marked WHW, Hagenauer, Bosse, Baller, Austria have been getting snapped up by various collectors in anticipation of the publication. Not mention, they are quite collectible to begin with.

So, the other day, I was perusing eBay and ran across the grape press corkscrew marked with the Rosenthal mark (RR), and was quite pleased to pick it up for a fair price. The grape press arrived via phil-the-mail-carrier, and I wanted to leave feedback. I headed up stairs, hopped on my laptop and linked to eBay. What should appear but another RR marked corkscrew with a buy it now!?!?!?!?!. I checked it out, made sure the person took paypal, and clicked the button.

How cool is that. So, two RR signed corkscrews have made it into the collection. Although, I have a feeling that the one pictured below–will garner a little trade action from Robert (AKA Wineleopard on eBay]. Hey, RL that Cumley [sic] patent would make a good trade!!!!!

Also pictured, are a couple of pictures from Brimfield (thanks Tommy). The early morning photo is of Mark and I (4:30 am arrival at Brimfield), the other is of a Jockey Scale–the coolest thing to see at Brimfield. And, had it fit in my mini cooper–and cost about $ 4500.00 less, I would have sprung for it!

Broken Grapes and Vines Thomason

A great corkscrew was listed last night / this morning, and the buy it now offers have been pouring in. A grapes and vines embossed Thomason with a broken helix is getting much attention. Here are the questions that have been asked thus far. I wonder if the "askers" are aware that he is adding these to the listing. And, no…none of the buy it now offers are mine.

Q: Hi… the worm looks broken, does the mechanism work?

A: Yes the worm is broken AS stated in item description, mechanism works fine.

Q: Would you accept £150 for it?

A: No, thank you for your offer but in fairness to all once listed I will let the auction run its coarse.

Q: I’d go for aus 500 if you’re interested

A: Thanks for your generous offer but in fairness to all once listed I will let it run the auction course.

Q: Hi, can you add a buy it now option? Thanks.

A: I can but I have no idea what it is worth

back up and running!

after a brief jaunt to the local store, I am now back up and running with a new camera! So… below are pictured some of the finds from Brimfield… These ones have already been listed on eBay as of a little while ago. However, there are more finds to come, and more pictures to follow.

I would post more here right now, but I just realized we are out of coffee, and a trip to Starbucks is paramount!

camera woes

Well, I managed to pick up another camera cord, but sadly… the camera will no longer hold a charge, and is officially on the blink. I will see if I can get a new battery, or if it is time to fork over some more cash for a new one. Either way, tomorrow I will be back up and running!