Dumpster Diving is a sport to some people-I've never done it, but I've seen my sister get some really great things from the dumpster area on the military base.
Living in an apartment, every time someone moves, we see the remnants of the family left behind. A tv or bookshelf will end up by one of the dumpsters and one of the other families will give it a loving new home. There was a group of three ladies who would come through and actually climb up into the dumpster and sift through items. They usually walked away with something or other, but I am not so confident that the value of it was worth the effort put forth to get it.
I read this book, the name of which escapes me right now, which was about a society of people who live in New York who go through and recycle other peoples garbage. It was very interesting-and they did find a LOT of stuff. Some of which was quite valuable. Most of us just discard things because it's easier to throw it out than to find a new home. Or we believe that because it is no good to us, it is no good. Who determines when the lifespan of an item?
Anyway....A family recently moved out and left two unbuilt structures in the garage they vacated. Brand new, never built, left behind with unopened packages of nuts and bolds and the like. One had directions for a bookcase, that might be the right ones. The other had a note attached saying, "New Armoire-Never built-All pieces here. No book-sorry!"
We gave these pieces a new home last month....and they have been sitting outside my back door until last weekend.
I enlisted the help of Jeff (the only other male at the easter volunteer project) to get the armoire together. I had hoped to use it for my tv and sell my old one on Craigslist, or put it together and sell it.
Jeff came over with this funny idea in his head that it would only take two hours.
After an hour of just staring at pieces and talking out how they MIGHT go together to create my new tv armoire, Jeff starts assembling things...
Three hours and three beers later, Jeff and I come to the realization that we (meaning he) has just built an armoire! For a computer.
It's not for my tv at all! I'm a bit disappointed, as it's big and has doors and is more unobtrusive than what I have now, but the kid is happy--it's sitting in the corner of my living room, without the doors on yet, and he's got it set up for school work and asks every day if we can rearrange his room to make it fit in there.
Not the original plan....but I guess someone was happy in the end.
Jeff was happy that I didn't bug him to come back and take it away! (I'm sure I had him nearly convinced he wanted it!!