Friday, April 25, 2008

Russell Oliver Wants To Do You (A Favour)

Every Torontonian knows Russell Oliver. He's the Cashman. He wants to give you cash for your old, dusty jewellery. Do you have any tired, sick gold? He'll take it. Any bruised gold? Any past-ripe, mealy gold? Any ripped or torn gold? He'll even take your dog-eared gold. This guy wants gold.

He'll take charred gold. Was your gold in a fire? Did you keep your gold in the basement? Oh, you had a flood? Is your gold all mouldy and mildewed? The Cashman doesn't care.

Is your gold dented? Did you get tomato sauce on your gold? Did your dog eat your gold? Don't tell me you're still keeping that ratty, threadbare gold. Take it to Oliver.

Aged diamonds? You got any wizened, aged diamonds? He wants them. He'll even take your sad emeralds, pathetic rubies, and tormented platinum. It doesn't matter to him.

One time he even took gold with a Caesarean scar. And if you think that's something, the very next day he took menopausal gold.

My friend took a tennis bracelet to a pawn shop. The bracelet had two karats of diamonds, and the setting was 24-karat gold. The shop owner examined it, then tossed it back to my buddy. "What are you bringing this shit in here for? See those diamonds? These diamonds are expired. And this gold; this gold's got silverfish. No, I can't help you." My friend turned and walked toward the door, dejected. "Wait!" the proprietor shouted. "There's a guy who helps people like you. He's crazy, but he'll take anything. Last week a guy came in here and wanted to fob this wet Rolex on me. I said take that to Russell Oliver. He'll not only towel it off for you, he'll give you a couple bucks."

A few weeks ago that same friend went into Oliver's store; he had a gold ingot he wanted to sell. (This friend's trying to get in on Potash before it goes to $300.)Gold was going for $900/ounce, and Oliver offered him $500 for his one-ounce minted bar. Fine, he was entitled to make a profit.

"You got anything else?" Oliver asked. My friend slapped a hundred-dollar bill on the counter. "I'll give you sixty-seven fifty for it."

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