Friday, June 10, 2011

Give & Go, Dump & Run...No matter what, it works

 Bowdoin College has been responsibly getting rid of its end-of-school flotsam and jetsam since 2002.  Back in the beginning, they called it the "Dump and Run" and a few local non-profits helped the Bowdoin staff collect, sort and sell the clothing, sheets, lamps, rugs and other detritus from the college students that would otherwise be thrown in dumpsters.  In return, the non-profits got a cut of the profits ($11 Thousand in the early days).  In 2003 I volunteered with the Dump and Run, to benefit a women's shelter where I did some part time work. I remember stacking reams and reams of paper and sorting lots of three ring binders in the old hockey arena.  As a volunteer, I got the golden ticket: early entry to the presale, the day before the public opening.  I remember bringing home some bargains: An extra long therm-a-rest pad, book shelves, and a remarkably clean rug. I paid $10 for that clean rug.  That once clean rug now looks like this:

(Don't ask about the burn mark, I'll post about that soon, I promise.)

So here it is 2011 and Bowdoin is still running their sale and still organizing a great volunteer effort and cleaning their campus in the process. This year's sale, called the "Give and Go" opens to the public tomorrow morning at 8am in Fort Andross, Brunswick.  This year I earned the golden ticket by volunteering with others from the Bowdoinham Community School's parent organization.  I sorted sheets and pillowcases for 4 hours. Yes, it was gross. And at this year's presale I bought another great, amazingly clean rug. One foot shorter, and $10 more than the 2003 version.

 The presale was a mad house, but I had a blast . Everyone was in a good mood, despite the muggy heat of Thursday afternoon.  Bowdoin faculty, staff and students got to join the throngs of volunteers.   Perhaps it was the heat that made me gravitate toward this outfit. 

 Who owned this? A college student? 
I really want to wear it at my library's Summer Reading Program with its "One World, Many Stories" theme.  I could just imagine reading Anansi the Spider in this outfit!  But here is the question.  Is it a man's suit or a woman's?  And what would be the appropriate head wear?

If you are going to the sale tomorrow, a few things:
 Get in line early, maintain a positive attitude, bring your own tote bags, and remember that it all goes to many many good causes.  But don't count on a large, green  African outfit for $6.  I got the only one.


  1. I'm betting it's a man's suit, but honestly, who cares! It's FABULOUS. I've been wearing big, long scarves, wrapped all around and with the ends tucked. Though yesterday the one end didn't tuck easily so I left it out, it actually looked intentional! Start with the middle of the scarf in front, go around, tie over in the back, come back front, twisting and wrapping as you go, and twist and wrap the ends as they overlap each other. You can go the other way too, depending on how long your scarf is. Any long piece of fabric would work... you must have some of those, no?

  2. I remember the Dump and Run - I am still using the art supplies I picked up for about $.25.

  3. Kate...very clearly west African, would be worn by a man.... GORGEOUS....


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