Now I’ve spent a lot of my life selling stuff on eBay. There’ve been serious man-hours spent snapping old leather jackets and battered-in Marshall amps from every scrupulous angle: making sure my item was in the correct category, that I’d detailed every little scuff and wine stain, scouring Royal Mail’s postage costs for the perfect price and toying with keywords for the title. It’s a royal pain in the eButt.
For those, like me, rummaging round your wardrobes at the end of the month for that bit extra pocket money, I have fantastic tip for you – don’t bother.
Bottled thin air at an opening bid of £1.99? Bargain! It was probably more expensive than that sealed and full of water in London.
You also got some super unique exhibits thrown in with the town – human-sized prop aliens were planted around the property and in vehicles, as well as a real stunt plane smashed into the roof of a building (just what you’ve always wanted) and a Volkswagen Beetle in a tree. The tourist attraction has been the host of quick-draw gun shows with real cowboys from Abilene, Kansas, as well as magic shows and dance-hall girls.
One lucky eBay bidder hit the jackpot back in 2005, when he won a luxury sports car, worth £25,000… for 50p. The Lotus Espirit Turbo, owned by controversial Birmingham radio DJ Tim Shaw, was sold within minutes after being posted on the website.
Not long before the sale, Shaw had propositioned glamour model Jodie Marsh live on-air, announcing on Kerrang! FM show that he would happily leave his wife and two kids for the ‘I’m A Celebrity’ contestant. His wife, Hayley, was furious, calling it the ‘last straw’ of their relationship. The item description for the car on eBay read: “I need to get rid of this car immediately – ideally in the next two to three hours before my husband gets home to find it gone and all his belongings in the street.”
As you can see from the photo, Jon Malipieman is very much, imaginary. There’s no small print, no trickery here. In the official description of the product the seller made the following statement: “My imaginary friend Jon Malipieman is getting too old for me now. I am now 27 and I feel I am growing out of him. He is very friendly. Along with him, I will send you what he likes and dislikes along with his favorite things to do and his personal self portrait.”Incredibly, Jon Malipieman received 31 bids in total, and was posted in an envelope to the winning bidder
That’s exactly what ten-year-old Zoe Pemberton did when she put her grandmother up for auction, along with a frankly honest description of her faults. The selling points of 61-year-old Marian Goodall were that she was very cuddly and ‘loves word searches’ but she tended to be ‘annoying and moaning a lot’. The auction was meant as a cheeky joke, but that didn’t deter the throng of bidders offering more than £20,000 for Granny Goodall.
Diane Duyser, from Florida made a grilled cheese sandwich one day, and took a bite from it. Nothing to mess your pants over, of course. We’ve all made a sandwich, you say. But has the Virgin Mary Mother of God herself ever been in there? Duyser, 52, spotted the face, scared at first, but believes the sandwich brought her good luck and is truly convinced of its divinity. When she sold it a decade later, little did she realise how much bread she could buy from the takings. With over 1.7 million hits on the sandwich, GoldenPalace.com, an online casino, were the corporation of maniacs that hammered the winning bid: the company executives saying they were willing to spend “as much as it took” to own the toasty shrine. It was, they said, part of pop culture and instantly recognizable.
In July 2008, Ian Usher, a British man living in Perth, made international news when he put his entire life for sale on eBay. Heartbroken after up his wife left him, he wrote in his auction description: ‘I have had enough of my life! I don’t want it anymore! You can have it if you like!’
The package, including his house, job, car, motorbike and even an introduction to his friends, sold for £192,000, and Ian set off around the world to live out 100 goals in 100 weeks. The 48-year-old ticked off a list of dreams: running with bulls in Spain, skydiving nude (not a good image), meeting Richard Branson, cave diving with sharks in South Africa, learning French, joining the ‘mile high’ club (did he skydive nude before or after this one?), getting himself a six pack, riding the wall of death and nabbing a role in a Hollywood movie.
University fees are extortionate, there’s no escaping that fact. unless you’re lucky enough to come from well-off stock or suddenly win the lottery, student debt will follow you around for most of your life.
But not in Rosie Reid’s case, the 18-year-old student who auctioned her virginity on eBay to pay for her studies. Back in 2004, the lesbian university scholar from London had sex with the highest bidder, a 44-year old BT engineer, in a hotel room in Euston. He paid £8400.