Several years ago, I was shown a corkscrew which the dealer believed to be of German origin, and I believed to be of American origin. His price was pretty steep, and I knew better than to ask for a lower one.
He–affectionally known as the “exploding antique dealer–had a tendency to suddenly erupt at his customers. He would bellow at them to get out of his store!
And, on one occasion, at an estate sale–I was in line 4 people behind him–after waiting a fairly long time, he screamed and started to kick in the front door of the house. He then stormed off fuming!
Still, occasionally he had corkscrews, and on one or two occasions, they would be worth buying.
Interestingly, after he moved his location and opened a mall, the corkscrews were now kept behind a counter, and he reluctantly would show them to perspective buyers.
Perhaps he was tired of people looking and then trying to get him down on price. Perhaps there were other issues…
So, almost nine years ago–nine years ago tomorrow–Sue and I were visited by a corkscrew collector, who bought a few things from me, and then he and I went out antiquing. And, one of our visits was to the exploding antique dealer’s shop. Corkscrews were examined, and prices were not challenged. After a small pile of twisted treasures were accumulating, a carved tusk corkscrew with a fairly high price tag garnered my friend’s interest.
He asked for a better deal.
And, you could see the antique dealer begin to swell. His face started to turn a bit red. (I actually took a couple of steps back in anticipation of what was coming) But seeing the pile of corkscrews that were about to be paid for, he managed to contain himself.
Calmly, he countered the offer, and a price was agreed upon.
Cash changed hands, and we said our goodbyes, and the dealer asked me to come back later.
After dropping my fellow collector off at his accommodations, I returned to the antique mall, and the dealer presented me with the oversized corkscrew, and thanked me for bringing in someone who was so willing to buy.
At that point in my collecting, I had never seen another example of this particular corkscrew, so that day I blogged about it, and posted some photos on the Yahoo page of the CCCC (yes, we had one of those back then).
And, shortly thereafter, I received a phone call from another collector who apparently coveted the oversized piece–which turned out to be a Walker bell–that I was given as a commission.
So, I traded it away.
And, in return got a hard to find American patented corkscrew that made my best 6 of that year.
Still, I regretted making that trade a bit, as later I had come to understand how hard a piece the oversized Walker bell corkscrew was to come by.
This morning, almost nine years to the day that I got the corkscrew, the oversized Walker is returning home. Yes, the same collector who traded for the oversized Walker, put it up for sale on the collector corkscrews buy now site! And, I just happened to pop online and see it!
For a very fair price, the oversized Walker is heading BACK into the collection!