"Am I beast or am I human -- Am I just like you?" - Danzig, "Am I Demon"

Sun Valley Garage Sale Leads to VHS Gold!

Last Saturday was Sun Valley’s annual neighborhood garage sale day. Rain or shine, whether we’re looking for anything in particular or not, we always go to garage sale, because it’s a tradition. Susan, the kids and I arrived at dad’s just before seven a.m. and had doughnuts and drinks (coffee for some, chocolate milk for others) before venturing out. (Note to self for next year: most of the garage sales didn’t open until 8 a.m. — wait until then to go.)

This year’s garage sales were kind of a bummer. There were a lot of clothes and a lot of furniture and not much else. I had just about given up on buying anything when I stumbled across a box of VHS tapes — mostly store bought ones from the 80s, with cartoons like the Muppet Babies and Dino Riders on them. The tapes were marked at a dime each and instead of counting them out I offered the sellers $5 for the entire box.

A few minutes later, Susan informed me that she had spied a large box of VHS tapes at a different garage sale. I asked her to go back and offer them $5 for the entire box. They accepted the offer, and now my office looks like this:

After we got home, I grabbed the first tape from the box and threw it into my VCR. (My VCR runs through my computer, which allows me to take screen shots.) The tape began with a home movie of two girls, each pretending to talk into a telephone, began lip-syncing to Randy Travis’s “I Told You So,” released in 1987.

In the second clip on the tape, a young man both lip-syncs and sings along with Bobby Brown’s “Roni,” released in 1988.

What I had found, apparently, was two hours of someone’s home movies recorded in the late 1980s.

I wanted to celebrate, but there was no time. After sitting through more lip-synced performances of White Lion’s “When the Children Cry” and Chicago’s “Look Away,” a later clip appeared with three girls and “mom” (?) singing and dancing to “My Prerogative.”

I am here to tell you, this is the greatest tape I have ever found at any garage sale, anywhere, ever.

Susan thinks it’s creepy that I watched 2+ hours of strangers singing and dancing to hits from the late 80s. I can’t explain how amazing it was to watch. It was like getting invited to the ultimate 80s party!

Despite buying this tape in the neighborhood I grew up in, I don’t recognize anyone that appears in the videos. I think they must be a couple of years older than me, but other than that I’m clueless. In one skit the teens can be seen reading from an issue of The Watchtower (a magazine for Jehovah’s Witnesses), but that’s my only clue to their identity.

I tried uploading the clip to YouTube and due to all the music it was flagged immediately for copyright violation. I guess if you want to watch the video in its entirety, let me know and we can have an 80s party of our own!

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3 comments to Sun Valley Garage Sale Leads to VHS Gold!

  • Mike Warma

    I would pay money for a screening of this. Just saying.

  • Kevin Moon

    I would love to see this someday. This resonates with me. A friend of mine is also always looking for stuff like this. Years ago, he did. The tape was called “Kenny’s Party” and it was legendary. My friend must have watched that tape a hundred times, much to the dismay of his roommate. It finally got thrown out, I think, which is a real shame. He’s regretted it ever since.

  • Paul in AZ

    I would LOVE to see those videos. You scored, Rob; you scored BIG TIME!

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