October 2nd, 2004


more eBay ramblings ...

Ah, tonight looks to be a good night for card gathering on eBay! I just "for the heck of it" pulled up eBay and punched up my Pokemon search ... I saw a card that was about to close for 1¢ ... upon quick reference, I found that it was something Daughter #1 didn't have and on my "cheap" reference retail site it was listed for $6.00! So, of course I jumped on it, and then hit the "view seller's other items" link ... YOW!

This guy was selling of dozens and dozens of "reverse holo" cards that are "worth" 2-10 bucks a pop at "retail" for opening bids of just a penny ... and for some reason (must be a hot Friday night), very few things were getting any traffic at all. Heck, I didn't even bother to bid on things that already had a bid in! I just got done bidding on all the cards that Daughter #1 didn't have, were starting at 1¢, and didn't have any bids as yet ... counting just now, that was 75 auctions in the next 20-some hours! So far I've won (at a penny) 15 of these, with another 8 closing in the next half hour.

I, frankly, anticipate that this will be pretty much it for my winnings, as the bulk of the rest close tomorrow (Saturday) afternoon, which is a time slot much more likely to have active bidders, and I pulled back my bid when I started to see how many there were to bid on (although I've not had to go over the minimum as yet). However, it is possible that the ones that close towards late-night tomorrow might still not get bid on. I'm still amazed that out of 75 auctions I put bids in on, there's only been two so far where I've been outbid!

Even with shipping (which will be about a quarter per card), I'm doing really well ... my "target zone" is 1/7th of "low retail" on the cards, and even on the cheapest cards I'm at about 1/8th, and doing much better on many of them ... I just LOVE IT when I can spend $10.00 and get a hundred bucks worth of cards ... especially the ones in this group tonight ... as the "reverse holos" only come one to a pack (which retail at anywhere from two-fifty to four bucks each), and replicate every regular card in the set (i.e., a 100-card set would require buying at least 100 packs, and that's assuming the highly unlikely scenario of getting no duplicates), so are a real bitch to collect.

Daughter #1 is going to freak when I tell her what we scored! I just checked again, and I'm up to 21 wins for 21¢ (well, $7.21 with shipping)! OK ... that whole first bacth has closed, and I'm 26/26, for a grand total of 26¢ (plus $8.25 shipping) ... WOOT! ... I love it when I stumble over a deal!

Yeah, I know ... "like you care" ... I should make an eBay/Pokemon icon so you'll know when to not bother reading this drivel (ah, but a guy's gotta have a hobby, right?)!

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We don't need no steenkin' PUNDITS!

Ah, yes, the other ways of judging how things are going to go ... somewhere along the line somebody noticed something about Presidential politics and Halloween costuming ... in each of the last six elections, sales of candidate masks accurately predicted the outcome of the election ... the guy that "the people were buying" won each time. Well, the good news (from my side of the aisle) is that GWB is clearly in the lead in this key indicator ... posting 57% to Kerry's 43%. Read all the goofy details in Masked revelers prefer Bush!

heh ...

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Ugh ...

Well ... the GeekSquad "Agent" was here for about 2 hours this morning. I'm still on dial-up. We are closer to having a wireless DSL network, but we're not there yet. It seems our apartment (as is the case in many high-rises) is not particularly "radio friendly" ... we at one point had a wireless phone, and if you weren't in line-of-site of the base, it was real iffy for the connection ... something similar is happening witth the DSL signal. It looks like I'm going to have to install the tower thing somewhere in the middle of the apartment and jury-rig the connections to it. Hopefully if it's in the middle, all the random corners of the apartment where we have computers will be able to "see" it. I just wish the damn thing was up and running. I suspect that I'm going to need to get a range extender to get the signal back into my office, but we'll see. Tomorrow I get to drill holes in the walls ... I thought that was what the whole "wireless" thing was supposed to avoid!

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Birthday loot ...

Sometimes things just seem to come together. My father-in-law sent me a check for $75 to get myself something for my birthday ... all too often these sorts of things get pissed away on a cab ride here, a sandwich there, etc. ... well, I remarkably (I almost never open and read their notices since going on non-shipment) discovered that one of the record clubs was having a "get anything for $4.99" sale which ended next week. So, I logged on to their web site and found that I could get an additional 10% off for it being my first on-line order, so even though they charge insane shipping, my total per CD was only like $7.50 with tax and all. Now, mind you, this was a record club, so there was a notable lack of "edgy" stuff, but I think I did OK, some old, some new, some stuff that I'd been meaning to get, etc. ... here's the list:

                    Black Rebel Motorcycle Club - Take Them On, On Your Own
                    Black Rebel Motorcycle Club - Black Rebel Motorcycle Club
                    PJ Harvey - Uh Huh Her
                    The Vines - Winning Days
                    Type O Negative - The Origin Of The Feces
                    Type O Negative - Slow, Deep And Hard
                    The Donnas - Spend The Night
                    Curve - Gift
                    The Smithereens - Blown To Smithereens: Best Of The Smithereens
                    Ottmar Liebert & Luna Negra - The Santa Fe Sessions

Not a bad haul ... I'd been meaning to pick up those early Type O Negative albums for ages, but I just couldn't bring myself to pay retail ... a pretty wide variety in there too ... I'm looking forward to getting them!

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eBay/Pokemon update ...

Oh, come on ... you know that on some level you were wondering how I did last night! Well, my suspicions were correct ... I got outbid on virtually everything this afternoon/evening ... I don't know where everybody else was last night when I won all 26 things I was bidding on!

As I noted, I bid on a total of 75 auctions ... won 26 of them last night, won 4 this afternoon, and then another 5 this evening ... so since my previous post on this I went 9/49, which actually surprised me, as when I last checked (about an hour out from the last group of closings) I was still winning on a couple of dozen auctions. Oh, well ... I won 35 cards, at a penny each. The total "retail" for these cards (which ranged from $2-7 on the "cheap site") was $122.00 and I'm anticipating the "damages" for this coming to a mere $10.85 (only 35¢ of which is the card costs, the rest being shipping!), which is easily comparable to having a beverage and a few games of pinball, so I don't feel so bad. Heck, even if all my bids had won (at their max levels, not at a penny each) I'd have only been on the hook for $29.00, so it was a lot of "play" for very little "pay"!

Geez ... can you imagine how obsessive-compulsive my posts would be if I actually gambled? Heh!

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Shark Tale ...

We went out to see the new Shark Tale movie tonight ... it was pretty good, but "lightweight", depending more on cultural cliches than much character development or backstory. Unfortunately, Daughter #2 was being "a problem" (throwing a fit about 1/4 into the movie that we didn't have any snacks) which escalated after the movie into being "a monster", resulting in us skipping on plans for going out to eat.

There is so much animation coming out of late that it's getting hard to really peg a film ... but this one seemed to be heavily focused on translating the facial features/gestures of the voice talent into their animated characters ... I suppose that if one is paying for a lot of "big names" that you want to point it out (sort of the opposite of the Garfield movie where Bill Murray was totally wasted as Garfield's voice), but there wasn't much "what can this star bring to this character?" (think Mike Meyers fleshing out Shrek) and more "gee, that's what Will Smith looks like as a fish!". This made for difficulties when you didn't know the actor involved ... for instance, I don't think I've ever seen anything with Renée Zellweger in it, so I was having a hard time figuring out who the fish character Angie "was" among the more familiar faces (voices). To go back to the Shrek comparison, Princess Fiona is a role that Cameron Diaz acts, not just an animated version of her ... almost every character in Shark Tale is a caricature of the actor voicing the character, and not a character developed by the actor

That said, it was an amusing movie with several quite endearing bits ... but it's no Shrek ... heck, it's not even a Treasure Planet, but it's not a bad film.

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