17. The 30 second encounter
I don't own one but I did work in work for a couple of years, the most memorable one was only about 30 seconds. Large sweaty man walks in with a belt sander, set it down on the counter in front of me and plugged right in. Made direct eye contact and switched it on. The sander immediately made a loud popping sound and smoke begin to rise. Unplugged it, turned around and walked out without a single word between us.
18. Hilarious and heartbreaking encounters
My great uncle owns a pawn shop and some of the stuff that happens there is hilarious or heartbreaking.
People trying to sell free old TVs they got on craigslist for hundreds of dollars because now they are "vintage."
Obviously rented instruments for their kid's band class that have tags on them from the rental place.
And oh boy, do people get pissed about engagement rings. He literally has a bag of engagement rings, they so easy to come by. Women tend to be sad when they find out they get almost nothing or are fake. Men tend to get aggressive, enough that he has my cousin up front watch out extra-careful when he tells a dude he can't pay really much of anything for what the dude thought was an "investment" ring.
On the other hand, if someone is in trying to sell their wedding ring, especially if it's a lady with kids, he's been known to just give them $50 and send them on their way.
19. The actual price of most typewriters
I buy and repair typewriters. It's an odd niche hobby of mine more than anything. Typewriters can go for a lot of money! But, most aren't honestly worth what people want. 85% of typewriters are worth no more than $125 in pristine condition. Many times people will try to sell their inherited typewriters for $50 to $1000 more in some cases than they're worth. I've seen one person try to sell a typewriter to me for $650 because he saw one online for $700 in a different color. I had bought the exact same typewriter 3 days before for $63. One typewriter, several people were trying to all sell them for $150-250. I bought one, in amazing condition, better than the higher priced ones for $70.
Just because someone labels something a price and/or because it's old doesn't mean it's worth that price or valuable. That's not how it works.
20. When cops get involved
I've been working in a pawnshop for 6 years now. So many stories. My favorite was a guy who had been in several times with complete crap. We never bought any of it. This time he gets pissed and demands that we buy something and refuses to leave until we do. He is being very loud and cursing. He was clearly on some sort of drug. We told him we were going to call the cops and he responded with "Good. When they get here I'm gonna have them arrest you." We called the cops right in front of him and he actually stuck around for them to show up. The cops arrived and asked him to step outside and tell his side of the story. He continues to make it very clear that he is drugged up on something and they take his backpack. He is talking to one officer while the other starts going through his bag. He turns to see the officer going through his bag and violently snatches it away from him. The look of "did you seriously just do that" on the cops face was priceless. They tackled him from both sides, wrestled him to the ground, cuffed him, and put him in the back of the car. One of the officers walked in and simply states. "We're going to take him with us. Is everything else ok?”