Saturday, April 17, 2004

Entire Life's Possessions

Rummaging lives, but lives on at rummaging.org Check it out.(Near) daily updates.


I'm starting from scratch. Mid-life change in philosophy. I'm selling everything I own and starting over again"

Home, car, furniture, antique bottle collection.

There's something a bit sad about all this. The listing reads like a character in a Paul Auster book. And I'm not sure that those characters are ever happier once they've come through the other side of their supposedly deliberate and considered attempts to change their lives like that.

Part of me hopes he won't get any bids.

Part of me thinks that for $300,000, you'd be getting a bargain.

Wednesday, March 31, 2004

rummaging.org is live!

From today, rummaging is moving from the blogspot domain to it's own, funky, redesigned page at www.rummaging.org

All the archives from this site have been moved over, there are rss feeds, permalinks and a ton of other good stuff.

So please visit www.rummaging.org.

Tuesday, March 30, 2004

They distress Frank when he sees them

We've missed the boat on these. They sold for just 99p. Had I been Frank, I might have tried to buy them back. It's amazing what vets can do these days.

Do you really want to know what these are?


Monday, March 29, 2004

Cuban Refugee Boat for sale

That august journal of note, the West Palm Beach Florida Channel reports that a Cuban Refugee Boat has been put up for sale on eBay by a seller from Margaritaville, Florida.

Described as a "conversation piece", bidding starts at $750, with the buyer to collect.

The ad reads:

"On the boat was left behind personal belongings such as clothing, shoes, tools, with a  yo-yo, (old style spool & line for fishing), along with metal hooks we guess was used for retrieving fish & crudely made funnels used for the gas & oil.  The makeshift sails are made of a combination of vinyl, tarp & plastic sheeting tied together with rope."

When you read between the lines of the ad, it becomes pretty clear that the seller just found it on the beach. No connection to the four refugees who abandoned the boat at all. Someone found it, now they're going to sell it. Proper, old-fashioned seacombing combined with US immigration's "wet-foot dry-foot policy."

If selling this boat strikes you as distateful, don't worry. Part of the proceeds will be donated to the Key Largo Animal Shelter, which makes everything OK.

Sunday, March 28, 2004

Courtney Love:Proper Rock Star

Courtney Love's had a busy few weeks. She's been managing her new album/tour/court case/publicity campaign, whilst at the same time scaring half the life out of most of New York. But then, she is one of the few remaining Proper Rock Stars, and this is what Proper Rock Stars do.

A downside of Proper Rock Stardom involves sneaky members of your entourage nicking your stuff and selling it to fans. Had it been around in the 1970's, enterprising roadies would no doubt have been selling off Hendrix's headbands or Mama Cass's half-eaten ham sandwiches on eBay. Natali pointed out that the coffin from her new video "mono" has just gone up for grabs.

You might think you want Michael Jackon's glove for $3m, or Britney's "snake" costume for $25,000, but what you really want is Courtney's coffin, for just $520.

Thursday, March 25, 2004

jayandmarie - a cry for help???

So maybe I was right...in a way.

Described on Usenet (hello to all of you, by the way) as "a grandstand cry for attention", it seems that the jayandmarie auction may not be all it seems.

Reports suggest that the auction is driven by the couple's desire to make a statement regarding a number of eBay policies. However this plays out, such obvious tension between eBay and their number one seller can't be good news. eBay has a symbiotic relationship with its Power Sellers and if "music's big dog" (copyright:cd2u) bail out, this sends a pretty clear message to all the Power Sellers in that category.

Recent posts by jayandmarie on the eBay message boards bear out this theory, claiming that eBay thinks that the era of the traditional "semi-pro" power seller is over, making way for Walmart and Best Buy to list all their overstock crap. (I may have paraphrased a little).

In this thread, there is a long post by jay, criticising the elimination of sub-categories in the music section. He writes:

"...eBay is moving, I believe, toward a non-category system where everything on the site is found by searching, much like Amazon.com. You don't 'browse' Amazon, but you DO 'browse' eBay. Most of what I sell, I believe, is found by 'browsers' and not 'searchers'. I believe this is a short-sighted, disastrous decision. I have been hoping and praying for months that whoever's son-in-law is running this program within eBay will lose his job or give up on the project, but it hasn't yet happened."

He seems, to be fair, pretty pissed off.

"...I have repeatedly voiced my opinion that eBay is only as good as its sellers, and as sellers become alienated or frustrated and die off then the site is weakened."

And Marie seems lined up alongside him, writing "My husband and I are heartbroken over these changes" about changes to the books category.

More on this as I get it, though I stand by the fact that no-one will bid for it, but maybe that's the point.

Those links again:

jayandmarie auction
jayandmarie store
jayandmarie don't like the category changes on eBay

(note: at last look, eBay hosted discussions about jayandmarie were dropping like flies. Please email me if you find broken links or more news on this story.)

jayandmarie - rummaging does a little maths

eBay's most powerful power-sellers, jayandmarie are selling up. They are asking $5m for their well known eBay store, which sells CD's starting at one cent.

What do you get for $5m?

You get real property of about $100,000, an ongoing operation with sales of about $1m a year,a website and a massive feedback rating of 167,032.

You also get to be the best customer of the Sierra Madre Post Office.

For the accountants among you, this basically values the goodwill of "jayandmarie" at about $4.9m, largely attributable to the jayandmarie brand.

Now, if your only route to market is through eBay, your brand is inextricably linked to eBay and the trust, reputation and value of your brand is based on your feedback rating, then your brand, pretty much is your feedback rating.

So with a brand worth $4.9m and feedback of 167,032, jayandmarie are actually selling their feedback rating at $29 a point.

Seems a little steep when you're selling CD's for $12 a pop.

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Castle for sale on eBay

Last year, the owners of Castle Lee tried to auction their castle. They used their own site (warning:site plays Auld Lang Syne) so whilst they got a lot of publicity, they didn't get any bids.They seemed to have learned the same lesson as Rosie Reid/Harmen - unless the auction is on eBay, you might get the publicity, but no-one can ever find it to make bids.

The vendors claim that the castle is going back on the market due to the high number of hoax bidders first time round. They also claim that John Travolta was interested, but he must surely be focused on his Jumbolair ranch right now.

So this time, they're doing it all again, using a more traditional eBay listing. Which is obviously a better way to avoid fake bidders.

Like all good eBay sellers, they're starting with a low reserve of just £4m to get the bidding going, although they hope final offers will be in the £8-£9m range.

With the dollar in the toilet at the moment, it's likely that bidders from the US will be deterred. So it's likely that the new Baron Lee might be someone looking for a bolthole from the newly re-elected President Putin. Just a thought.

(As this post is all about Castles and Property Porn, I really should have posted this on Gaff.But seeing as all the traffic at the moment is coming here with people looking for the Lesbian Virgin Prostitute's homepage, I thought I'd put it here. Check out Gaff though. It's funny)

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