“That Story Lady”

Angela Scott, Author – Storyteller – Ventriloquist

Volunteers, Bargains and Ideas Connect Random Moments of Remote Serendipity

March 17, 2010

Karen asked if I wanted to browse items in the Bargain Box a few minutes before our volunteer shift began. “Of course,” I replied. It had been several years since I last visited that store.

She looked at clothes while I went to the back of the store. My teacher in a coupon clipper class said the best prices were always found at the back of stores. As a specialist in bargain hunting, I remembered that lesson well. So, I looked at items in the clearance section. A framed picture for $1, “Heart’s Content” was one of the first items that caught my eye. An outhouse with the shape of a heart design cut through the top half of the door caught my eye. Many interpretations bolted through my mind and brought a mischievous smile to my face.

“I’m going to look at the books,” I told Karen. I left seven dollars in the car in case of an emergency, however, I silently told myself I had no plans to spend that money.

Browsing through the books, I found a book of essays written by Warren Buffet for fifty cents; a book of questions for fifty cents; Norman Cousins’ book, “Anatomy of an Illness” for fifty cents; and the book, “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days,” for $2.

Familiar with the first three books, the title of the fourth book stopped me in my tracks. “Could this be the same book related to the movie with Matthew McConaughey and Kate Hudson?” A sales associate walked past me and I had to ask.

“That’s what movies are – they’re usually based on books,” she responded. Returning to the car, I grabbed $4 to purchase all four books.

I began reading the book and quickly learned the movie and this book were one in the same. The book was published in 1998, although I did not find it until an unplanned shopping trip before our volunteer work began on an early Saturday afternoon in May 2007.

Karen and I discussed the bargains we found. Her eyes told the entire story when I showed her the “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days” book. We giggled like school girls as we thought out loud about the unlikely place to find a book and movie connection in our own hometown.

Just four years prior, I had written a thank you note to Mr. McConaughey in appreciation for the difference he made in my life based on a comment he made in an interview featured on the cover of PARADE Magazine published in 1999.

McConaughey shared in his interview the fact that he was not a big reader and had serendipitously found a small book he read in one sitting. He said reading that book had made a difference in his life. So, I decided that if the small book made a difference in his life, it could help me as well.

I found the book and although I was not immediately hooked, I kept reading because of the words he had shared, “…not a big reader.” I had earned good grades in school but up until then, reading had not been one of my favorite leisure activities.

Learn to be a good listener because success leaves clues. If you have not yet read the book McConaughey recommended, “The Greatest Salesman in the World” by Og Mandino, find it immediately. Read it and let me know when you find the clue I found.



Angela Scott is an author who diligently works to encourage and inspire you, and those with whom you live and work to continually find hope.

“Live your life as an exclamation, not an explanation.”

All writings here are copyrighted by Angela Scott. You may not use them without written permission but you may link to the posts or give out a link to the posts.

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