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The Invisible Hand Buzzer: One thing I enjoy is exploring the neglected underbelly of mass production. Until the Internet came along I saw only the endpoint of the process, the ninety-nine-cent store or (for the more upscale items) dollar store which purchase wholesale the hopeful monsters of capitalism and try to sell them to you. But now the scales have been lifted from my eyes, and I can get a glimpse of the process by which cast-off merchandise gets from its warehouse on the edge of town to your local flea market. Some examples from Ioffer, a site I just discovered. The "Business and Commercial" section is the one I'm mainly interested in.

I'm tempted to make inquiries and obtain insider information and wholesaler catalogs, but since I'm not an insider I fear the 'buy something or get out' vibe, and if it's in a catalog it seems too respectable, somehow, to be worth my time.

PS: Both Ioffer and Ebay have a section called "Dolls and Bears". What, are stuffed bears not a type of doll? Also, "Dolls and Bears" would be an interesting title for a musical.


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