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Antiquing makes me feel older than I am

Plenty of people love to pick through antique shops. Some may be hunting for deals and steals, but a lot seem to enjoy the nostalgia of examining cultural relics and pieces of history. Maybe that’s what antiquing is all about.

What is an antique, after all?

How old does a treasure or trinket have to be for collectors to call it an antique?

When it comes to automobiles, we tend to use the term for anything 25 years or older. But for vintage furniture, dishes, and other household goods, the standard may be 50 years or even 100. Period pieces date back to specific eras. OK, I get that. But how about more recent finds?

What about the quilted laptop case I spotted on my last jaunt? There it was, propped on a rickety rattan shelf, right next to a Civil War uniform and an Elvis nightlight.

How could a computer case qualify as an antique? Are laptops already considered to be obsolete and merely collectibles, much like veiled bonnets, scratched skillets, cracked cameos, vintage postcards, and tired toys?

Here’s the most curious part of antiquing – at least for me.

Poring through the past in an antique shop recently, I discovered tons of items that harkened back to my own childhood. From cartoon character and superhero lunchboxes to oldies vinyl records, and from cartoon-embossed jelly jar glasses to sports memorabilia, every booth took me back – way back.

I left the dusty old store feeling a little dustier and older than I’d been when I stepped inside. And I found myself wishing I had warehoused some of my own childhood keepsakes, so I could sell them to antique buffs today.

Hey, if I’ve gotta be old, I might as well make the most of it!

Adapted from public domain artwork

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