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Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Sitting on the dock of eBay


I have developed a nasty little habit. An ebay habit. Not buying stuff on ebay, I mean selling stuff or more accurately attempting to sell. When I say stuff, I mean stuff – no one product or streamlined store here. I randomly scan the room and think – I could sell that book, or that toy, or those shoes I never wore. What I’ve become addicted to is not clearing the house or making space for the new things, nor is it making money…I’m addicted to trying to understand the process of the buyers out in the ether. I want to find the pattern of what sells. Currently I have absolutely no clue at all. I list ten books, 1 sells, the rest sit there. I list a beautiful dress that never sells but a less than perfect jacket goes first time. I list a broken toy that I explain is heavy and not worth the postage and I have over a dozen watchers and a number of people asking me how much the postage would be…
The only thing I have learned over the past three months, is to relist. What doesn’t sell this time may go the next, or the listing after that. That’s the bit that makes me so curious. I still can’t predict what will sell and what won’t. I started doing it just to get rid of some of the copious toys that no one played with. Then I started making space on the bookshelf. The deal I struck with myself was I wouldn’t buy anything online until I’d covered the costs (and made the space) by ebaying the old items. I’ll be honest, I’m a little lax on that end of the deal but my intentions were good! However, with this new obsession, I’m listing far more than I’m buying. I’m determined to crack this nut, even if it means we have no furniture left but the laptop!
I’m sure there are studies out there, or even books I could buy online to solve this riddle quickly, but  onion peeling has always been a hobby of mine, as has dogged determination and obstinance (and stupidity). So I currently feel like I’m sitting on the dock while gazing over the eBay at the nation of consumers I don’t comprehend. Their language and habits are foreign to me. Yet as I look at the Jackie Chan doll I refuse to part with, or the vintage Dakar Rally Service truck I purchased off eBay at vast expense, perhaps I’m not as remote as I think. Perhaps the woman in Germany was wondering who would spend a small fortune to post a plastic toy truck to Australia, or the guy in America watched in shock at the bidding war over an action doll…
Maybe it’s like the song says ‘I'm just sittin' on the dock of (e)bay
Wastin' time’


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