Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Scenes from SCORE

Helping charitable organizations like City Harvest or Rock and Wrap It Up while also helping yourself to a gently used pair of jeans or a sweet amplifier sounds like a paradox.

It wasn’t to the more than one thousand Brooklynites who ravaged the makeshift shelving for clothing, books, and electronics at SCORE’s second-ever swap at 3rd Ward Brooklyn (195 Morgan Ave.) on November 21, evoking a Barneys Coop sale.

“We don’t push the altruism factor,” said Leslie Harmelin, who co-founded and helped organize SCORE. “People want to party and have a good time and get some free stuff. What could be better?”

Each section of the pop-up store was curated and staffed by knowledgeable individuals in their fields.

Writers from Showpaper informed customers about vinyl albums for sale, while librarians waxed on books, and an editor from Nylon magazine gabbed with deal-seekers about shoes and coats. By the end of the day, roughly 40 trash-sized bags were assembled which Rock and Wrap it Up collected and distributed to clothing charities throughout the city.

Jenny Gottstein, of Mean Red Productions, which cosponsored the event, helped organize the first public swap during an outdoor market earlier this year at the Brooklyn Yard.

She described the event as “fascinating.”

“I had the pleasure of explaining the concept of SCORE to a lot of people, which was, you pay $3, you drop off your stuff, it gets sorted by volunteers and you just wander around the departments like a department store, and then everything’s free,” said Gottstein. “Some people said, ‘Oh my God,” others had the ‘holy sh-t you’re kidding’ face, which was followed by brief moments of euphoria, people finding things they liked, and freaking out.”

Who needs Black Friday, seriously?

Photos and text by Aaron Short


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