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Adventures in Craigslisting (Chapter 3)

If you've been reading my other Adventures in Craigslisting posts, you'll know that I had arranged to buy a beautiful gem-in-the-rough table from Chris Howard. Chris, who specializes in furniture restoration, agreed to strip the table. I would then refinish it.

The day before I was supposed to pick up the table, I got a frantic email from Chris. He wrote,

Some jerk just stole the table!!!! My neighbor witnessed this guy on a bike with a trailer load it up and leave! Cops were called, took the report, and just left. I have furniture outside there all the time and nothing ever went missing. So sorry!!! Going to drive around and look for it now.

To find out what happened, just


Chris wrote me a second email shortly thereafter, saying

That was a unique table. I still can’t believe it. I’ve had $5000 items outside and nothing has ever happened. After the police left, I went to five antique stores to see if anyone tried selling it, but no luck. I got a lesson on the stolen furniture trade and who buys it. I’ll keep my eyes open. I might visit the Berkeley Flea market on Saturday to see if it’s there, and I also have the SHELL station [by his house] on the look out for the bicycle with yellow trailer. But I suspect it’s gone. Crime is getting bad around here.

Chris posted a "MISSING" ad on Craigslist, but in the meanwhile he wanted to give me my money back. I thought that seemed like a terribly unfair solution, given that he'd put so much work into the table. At the very least I wanted to use some of the money towards another piece of furniture that Chris owned.

To find out how this story resolved, tune in tomorrow!

Join The Conversation
HWJ HWJ 9 years
This dude sells an expensive table $40 bucks, strips it for apparently no charge, then it gets stolen. He's out the table, materials, labor, (a $700 chair,) AND he gets bad publicity. All for 40 bucks. lol! I'd bet he regrets selling that table now! :)
sgdish sgdish 9 years
That is terrible. What nerve!
amybdk amybdk 9 years
UGH... that is just disgusting! Looking forward to reading the happy ending!
Home Home 9 years
Thanks for your sympathy, everyone! It was definitely a bummer when the table disappeared, but this story does have a happy ending...and as Chris said, this incident was the exception to the rule. Most times people around here are kind and respectful (and don't steal tables out of people's backyards).
Gabriela14815884 Gabriela14815884 9 years
That is so messed up. I sorry the table is missing :(
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 9 years
That's horrible!
Catipa Catipa 9 years
WHAT!!! That is so terrible, what is wrong with people. I truly hope you are able to get your table back, it was a beautiful find and I was looking forward to seeing how it turned out.
ilanac13 ilanac13 9 years
that's awful! i always hate to think that people in the city are like that - just stealing things cause they think they can. i hope that it has a happier ending
Schaianne Schaianne 9 years
That's crazy!! Wow. How sad. :(
4BYRDS 4BYRDS 9 years
that's horrible! I hope you find your table!
Creativa404 Creativa404 9 years
Something seems strange here. No one but the neighbor saw a man on a bike pilling a trailer and a table? Whatever happened I wish you the best!
Daisie Daisie 9 years
November 20th? Oh...I hope you got it back or found another great piece! I was excited to see what you would do with it too! Bummer.
Bettyesque Bettyesque 9 years
Wow thats a crazy story, hope it works out for you.
iaudrey iaudrey 9 years
oh man, that so sucks! i really hope it works out, bummer.
aimeeb aimeeb 9 years
That's awful!!!
emalove emalove 9 years
Oh no, you were so excited for this too! What a bummer.
sparklemeetspop sparklemeetspop 9 years
Eeek! This is one major story. I thought CL was supposed to be easy to use? ;)
RosaDilia RosaDilia 9 years
Oh no, I was so looking forward to the finished job!! This is terrible!
cassandry cassandry 9 years
Ah, well, that's Berkeley for you. I lived there for ten years and heard about stuff like this happening all the time. Good luck, though. That table really is/was a beautiful piece.
colormesticky colormesticky 9 years
I live in a nice neighborhood, and we wouldn't dare leave furniture outside if we didn't want it taken. Unless there's a moving truck parked next to it people assume it's fair game. I'm sorry for both of you about the table. :(
delab delab 9 years
MAke sure you check eBay for the missing table, too. Bad deal..
amers230 amers230 9 years
omg i definitely wasn't expecting that!! talk about a plot twist haha. i'm so sorry though, that really sucks.
motherof3 motherof3 9 years
I'm so sorry for you. This is like a Lifetime movie or something. So much drama. I hope they find your table.
davisdavis davisdavis 9 years
Noooooooooo! That's terrible. Yet, the poster is oddly comical. Too soon? Sorry. But Chris is turning out to be a really nice guy- Craigslist can be funny that way, you loose a table, gain a friend.
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