To You of the Undated Yard Sale Sign,

Perhaps you view the world as a stack of mattresses escalating ever higher into the sky, and time as any number of seams along the tower. It is possible that in your mind, the past and the present and the future are all one condensed realization of the actual self, with no variation of time or consequence or history. You have read your Vonnegut and you agree: our days have no measurement besides that which are placed onto them by pitiful, tired human minds.

I can respect your point of view. Really, I understand where you’re coming from. Perhaps we are infinitesimal, and maybe we do make excuses for our transgressions and our timepieces. But please, please just dumb it down so I know when to stop by your house.

You of the used house wares, of the quilt strewn with baby clothes and torn state university sweatshirts. You of the twenty-five cent book, the ninety-nine cent bulb-less lamp, the overpriced sentimentals. I want these things, and I probably don’t need them. I have a desire, I have cash, and I am willing to haul any excessive amount of cat-scratched furniture. Please, for the love of God, just tell me when to come by.

I see your signs stapled to lampposts and telephone poles: YARD SALE TODAY: 423 FRANKLIN! Dear, dear existential heart, why do you tempt me? When is today? What does this mean? Today is Tuesday, yet I strolled by your place of impromptu business and nothing was laid before me. Nary a wine-stained glass nor duct-taped dice-less Monopoly box. My hopes were dashed, my heart destroyed, my dreams denied fruition. I could have made you happy, I swear. Your wallet could have bulged a little more, my hands could have known the weight of useless need, and each of our days could have brightened as we parted.

Instead I find a pile of crap at the curb, a hastily scrawled FREE sign knocked face-down into the road by the wind. I want nothing to do with your yard sale leftovers. I only want the real thing. So please, for both of our sakes, just date your damn sign.

Brad Efford