Aug. 17 2016 12:23 AM

Bountiful thrift store sits you down and heats your pizza

St. Vinnie's finds like this $49 recliner and $5 cartoon owl blankie are what make life great.
Lawrence Cosentino/City Pulse
It’s hard to believe we almost lost the surprisingly cozy 23,000-square-foot St. Vincent de Paul Thrift Store to a fire in 2011. In spite of the imposing, almost-too-nice-looking 2013 rebuild, the shop at 1020 S. Washington Ave. in Lansing’s REO Town district is still my favorite place to find clothes, furniture and unexpected treasures I didn’t know I needed. Here are my 10 favorite finds of all time:

1. Slightly soiled childhood-comfy reclining chair that is perfect for reading, doesn’t look like a reclining chair, made my house twice as homey and miraculously reversed an aneurysm suffered after looking at the four-figure price tags at Pilgrim House: $49

2. Bright red, brand new pizza warmer, still in the wrapper from restaurant supply store, not issued to civilians but unfailingly draws a conspiratorial smile every time I pick up a deep-dish at DeLuca’s: $2

3. 1,000-piece jigsaw puzzle depicting 100 exquisite species of beetle and without a single missing piece: $0.50

4. Cozy yet rugged Ernest Hemingway-ish hide-a-bed, brand new looking, decorated with caribou heads: $200

5. Vaguely oriental, square-paneled Frank Lloyd Wright-on-the-cheap floor lamp: $39 marked down to $29

6. Strangely comforting cartoon owl blankie: $5

7. Lead-pipe-heavy leather jacket with detachable fake fur collar, lined with satiny antique-looking world map (also detachable), i.e., the least cool leather jacket ever made: $49

8. 2XL, red and black vertically striped Mafia shirt, no top button, all synthetic material: $3.50

9. Soap bubble gun that lights up (a big hit at campfires): $0.50

10. Swooshy black ceramic fruit bowl that looked as if the late Zaha Hadid designed it so the tiniest grape would resist its embrace and roll onto the floor, but amazingly turned out to hold a lot of fruit: $7

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