Friday, February 20, 2004


I've been selling a lot of items on eBay, with good success. It has given me a real appreciation for the virtues of salesmanship -- you can get a lot more for an item if you spend time describing its virtues carefully (such as "I bothered to test this item and guarantee it's not a useless hunk of metal") and compare it to other similar items that are up for auction ("unlike those other sellers, I am willing to guarantee that this item will not kill you the moment you open it").

But the most useful tool is to add extras that "add value" to the "main" item. Hell, Ron Popeil understands that better than anybody -- "But wait! There's more!" It is in that vein that I offer this auction as an exemplar of the perfect eBay seller. It's not so much the item, as the extras.

Edit (1:00 pm): CURSE YOU, EBAY! As soon as someone gets a good, funny auction going, you kill it! The auction was for three items: (1) A "Maxim" magazine with Christina Aguilera on the cover, wearing thong panties in a pool; (2) the panties from that cover, which the seller swears are the genuine panties unlike other fraudulent sales on eBay; and (3) a sealed container of the actual pool water that Aguilera wore the panties in. Poor grammar, resentful tone, and a high bid of over $150 before it was taken down.

 8:33 AM

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