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image A teenage girl put her sister's diary up for sale on eBay. The sale is an act of revenge, done to get back at her sister because she "told my boyfriend that I cheated on him! " Bidding has already ended, with the diary going for $66. Some of the secrets you could have been privy to had you been able to bid in time include that her sister "cheated on her boyfriend, but NOT with another guy... She got into a fight at a supermarket with this fat guy... There were a lot of parties that she went to  and the outcomes were shocking". Wow!

The thing that gets me is that the girl says that the diary was not stolen. She has to say this because it's illegal to sell stolen merchandise on eBay. But if it's not stolen, then she must be selling it with her sister's consent. If her sister has given her consent, then it's hardly a revenge sale. In other words, any way you approach this, there's something fishy about the sale. The girl probably doesn't have a sister at all.
Categories: eBay
Posted by Alex on Tue Mar 15, 2005
Comments (18)
image The latest 'spawn-of-Virgin-Mary-Grilled-Cheese-Sandwich' on eBay is the Virgin Mary with Baby Jesus Pretzel. This is a pretzel that may, if you're of the right frame of mind, look kind of like a Picasso-style rendition of the Virgin Mary holding the Baby Jesus. According to the description: "This totally unique and spiritual item was found by a 12 year old girl.  She was eating "Rold Gold" Honey Mustard flavored tiny twist pretzels, when she noticed the Virgin Mother holding Baby Jesus.  We all had a feeling of warmth and spirituality when holding the pretzel." The salty pretzel has been receiving news coverage, and bidding on it has already passed $1,000 with three days to go.
Categories: eBay, Food, Religion
Posted by Alex on Sun Mar 06, 2005
Comments (32)
image A guy on eBay, inspired by the forehead advertising auction, attempted to sell his will. The winner of the auction would, upon his death, receive everything he owns. Since the seller is a young guy, the winner could be waiting for a while before they get anything. Two other things occurred to me. First, if the guy dies heavily in debt, all you're going to inherit is a bunch of bills. He fails to mention this possibility (and he would have an incentive to die in debt). Second, I'm not sure how you would make this arrangement legally binding. Perhaps it can be done. I'm not sure. But it seems possible that the guy could change his will later and create a difficult situation. I've heard of universities that arrange for people to will their estates to them, and in return the university gives them a certain amount of money until they die. But that seems different from what this eBay guy is proposing (and probably involves better lawyers). Anyway, the auction closed yesterday with no bidders, so I guess it's all a moot point.
Categories: Death, eBay
Posted by Alex on Sun Feb 20, 2005
Comments (9)
image Here are two more curious auctions on eBay (people keep sending me this stuff... probably because I keep posting about it). The first is a tortilla shaped like the state of Texas (item# 5557639562). The auctioner swears that "I have not cut it, clipped it, chewed it or changed it in any way. What you see is what came out of the bag." And I've got to hand it to him. It really does look like Texas. The current bid is only $1.99.

What you're supposed to see in the other auction, however, isn't anywhere near as obvious, but the current bid on this is $3,100. It's supposed to be a photograph of 'The Face of the Lord' as seen in a cloud (item# 5557053951). The photo was taken 31 years ago. I think I can see some kind of face-like features in the cloud, but as one person has already commented on the auction, 'What if it's the devil?' I wonder if it would fetch even more money if it were a demonic photo.
Categories: eBay, Food, Photos/Videos
Posted by Alex on Mon Feb 14, 2005
Comments (22)
A guy selling nothing on eBay is promoting it as the dumbest eBay auction ever. Since the idea isn't new (nothing has been sold on eBay before, as even he admits), it may just live up to the claim. The seller writes:

Rather than put up some arbitrary item that's worthless and intangible, I figured I'd just put up something of equivalent value: nothing. You are bidding on absolutely nothing. I won't send you anything if you win the auction. Shipping on this particular item is free. I will send you exactly what is described here, including no item and no packaging.

What gets me is that he then becomes all fussy and uptight about possible hoax bids. As if he would actually have something to lose if a hoax bidder won the auction.
Categories: eBay
Posted by Alex on Mon Feb 07, 2005
Comments (16)
Adrants reports on an interesting rumor. The recent forehead-ad auction on eBay may have been a hoax. Andrew Fischer, the guy who successfully auctioned his forehead for $37,375, seems to have had connections to SnoreStop (the company that won the auction) long before the auction occurred. Apparently he went to college with the daughter of SnoreStop's CEO... and the two of them colluded to pull off this pr stunt. The rumor has the ring of truth to it, because as Adrants says:

This entire thing was very iffy and scammy and media savvy, they even had a PR firm ready to give out photos in a jiffy. Who arranged all this to happen with such magic speed?

Plus, the idea of selling ad space on your forehead was hardly new. It had been done before, even on eBay. So it puzzled me why this guy in particular received so much attention. If it were all a carefully organized pr stunt, that would explain why.
Categories: Advertising, eBay
Posted by Alex on Sun Jan 30, 2005
Comments (6)
Maybe I should just change the name of this site to the Museum of eBay Hoaxes. After all, there seems to be an endless supply of them. (actually, a weblog devoted to weird online auctions really might be interesting, though I'd be surprised if something like that doesn't already exist). Anyway, I've received a couple of emails giving me a heads up about even more eBay hoaxes. First, Lillian alerted me to a woman selling a 'schizophrenic's past'. But the auction had already been pulled by the time I checked. Then Steve emailed me about this auction in eBay motors of "Wonder Woman's Invisible Airplane". The accompanying picture is the best thing about it. Somewhat reminiscent of the New Stealth Bomber photo.
Categories: eBay
Posted by Alex on Fri Jan 28, 2005
Comments (6)
image So where will this trend end? We've had head-vertising, ass-vertising, and tadoos (okay, tadoos were a hoax). So it shouldn't be any surprise that one woman is pioneering pregnant-belly-vertising on eBay. Is there any part of the body that advertisers won't pay to plaster their message on? Probably not. But is this woman going to walk around with her belly showing? Even if it's cold outside? It is Winter, after all.
Categories: Advertising, eBay
Posted by Alex on Thu Jan 27, 2005
Comments (23)
image A guy from Texas is selling his left nut on eBay so that he can buy a tractor. Ha Ha. It's a peanut. But I think I see the face of Jesus on it.
Categories: eBay, Folklore/Tall Tales, Food
Posted by Alex on Thu Jan 20, 2005
Comments (13)
image Hot on the heels of the latest guy who was auctioning off advertising space on his forehead, comes this eBay entrepreneur who has invented Forehead Ad Blockers.

there is a new type of advertising that is rapidly gaining ground: forehead advertising. These ads will be inescapable, especially if you have to visually interact with that soulless human posing as a walking billboard. That is, unless you have: The Forehead Ad Blocker™
Portable! No heavier than a standard pair of safety glasses!
Adjustable! Blocks forehead ads regardless of their height! Just raise or lift your head!
Patent-pending technology!

(via Adrants)
Categories: Advertising, eBay
Posted by Alex on Fri Jan 14, 2005
Comments (4)
image Up for sale on eBay is a roll of toilet paper rejected by the Beatles. It supposedly once occupied the toilet in the E.M.I. Abbey Road Studios in 1962 when the Beatles were recording there, but it was removed because the Beatles found it to be too hard and shiny. Plus, it had E.M.I. printed on it, which the Fab Four thought to be a bit strange. Bidding has already reached over £5,000. If you're a Beatles fan it would be a pretty cool souvenir, but my question is how anyone can be sure that this is the actual roll removed from the bathroom? What if it's just an old roll of E.M.I. toilet paper?
Categories: eBay, Entertainment
Posted by Alex on Fri Jan 14, 2005
Comments (8)
The LA Times has just discovered something that I've been saying for ages: haunted stuff sells well on eBay. As they put it: "Having exhausted bad taste and banality, it appears EBay sellers have moved on to a new marketing strategy — the paranormal. Everything "haunted" is so hot, EBay could launch a new category." But still, the LA Times is only seeing half the story here. What's interesting is not just that people are selling lots of haunted things on eBay. After all, there's always been a market for the paranormal. What's interesting is the new market for haunted junk that eBay has created. Take any old crap that's been collecting dust around your house: an old jar, a Coke can, a broken toaster. Slap a haunted label on it, make up a story about it, and hey presto, sell it on eBay for hundreds, maybe even thousands of dollars.
Categories: eBay, Paranormal
Posted by Alex on Tue Jan 11, 2005
Comments (16)
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