Now, a pack of Pokemon cards around here typically runs $4.49 (whcih is a hell of a lot to pay for 9 pieces of printed cardboard!), and on-line they can be had for around $3/pack. Daughter #1 really really likes opening up packs (for the excitement of finding high-value "ex" or other holographic cards), so I do try to keep an eye out for deals if I can find them.
Well, the other day I stumbled over a bunch of items up for bid from this one guy ... they were at quite the discount and had, strangely, drawn only minimal bid action (I think that this is because they were in shelf-hanging blister packs in various configurations so might not have shown up on some searches) ... and I bid on all the things he was selling, and won all but one. All in all I got 52 packs and four "decks", for a total price that worked out to about $0.75 per pack (even not figuring in the value of the decks, which retail for around $10/ea). Actually, I "won" the auction for a fraction of that, but the bid ended up as only 31% of the total, the rest being very high shipping (more than twice the actual postage) and mandatory insurance (which ended up costing more than half of the winning total!).
Anyway, why am I bothering to write about this now? Well, the package came in and Daughter #1 got into some of the packs yesterday. Six of the things in there were 3-packs, with a pack of the Expedition set, a pack of the Aquapolis set, and a random earlier pack in each. She first opened up the six Aquapolis packs and we found 10 cards that she needed from that set ... the value of those 10 cards (even on the "cheap reference site") came out to more that I'd paid for the whole deal! Nothing like "making your nut" on the investment right out of the gate ... whatever shows up in the remaining 46 packs is "gravy" at this point, which is quite a relief to me, since I was sort of kicking myself at spending $40.10 when most of my eBay buys are less than five bucks! If you figure it on a per-pack basis we're in my "sweet spot" of 1/7th of retail or better (and 6/52 is close to 1/9th), so I'm feeling real good about the deal (and, of course, Daughter #1 is very happy with her doting Father!).