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eBay.Com - Case VI - The Infinity Fortuna Spellkit!
Matt - 05/05/00

If you've gone through the X-E archives, you've probably seen my 'eBay cases', where I prove to the world the sheer stupidity of some of eBay's bidders. It's a world where you can call your empty bottle of Coca Cola a 'collectible' and cash in on it.

I've shown you how I could take an action figure not worth .20 cents, write a story about him, and make 20 bucks off him. I've showed you a giant plastic peanut defy all logic in retail sale. But nothing on Earth can prepare you for what I'm about to show you - the pinnacle, the ultimate...the biggest mockery of retailing you've ever seen in your life, period.

This was I guess about 14 or 15 months ago or so. At that point, eBay was already putting enough money in my pocket to warrant calling it a full time job, and I had a few tastes of the beauty of 'eBay marketing', where your item description sold your stuff more than the item itself.

I became obsessed with the idea that some of the people on eBay would buy anything. My mind reeled, looking around the house for the stupidest item I could find to hock. I was drawing a blank. Finally, it hit me. I was limiting myself. Why just search the house, when I had a full backyard to look through?

Now, unfortunately, I no longer have the hard copy of the ad I used saved. But I've got the pictures, which we'll get to in a moment. My stroke of genius was geared towards the metaphyiscal addicts on eBay. I noticed people selling 'good luck incense' and 'charmed bracelets', and figured this was my time to exploit them. I considered it poetic justice, having bought into those good luck Troll dolls several years prior.

So I got some dirt, rocks, and twigs from my backyard, and came up with this: The Infinity Fortuna Spellkit!

Looks pretty, doesn't it? Doesn't it just look magical? Well, apparently some bidders thought so. This trashpile from my backyard fetched 25 bucks. Let's examine it a little bit closer....

Firstly, you need to understand that what you see above is not what you actually get. I made it very clear in the ad that what you were getting were the rocks and sticks in a glass jar, with 'magical directions' to help you use the kit. All those accessories above were merely for show. But apparently they worked wonders.

Look at this mess. What we have here are some rocks and dirt mixed in with 'lucky clovers'. For added effect, I through in some shredded money that they give away at the Federal Reserve, citing that it had the power to make it's owner rich within a month. The total true value of everything you see here is $0.00. This was just awful. It took me 8 tries to get the picture right cuz I was laughing so hard while taking them.

This was my favorite. The use of props to insure the gullible would buy into it. Now, while I can understand one's desire to buy my magical backyard dirt, I felt the ad needed a bit more. So I took pictures of it next to candles and tarot cards. Surely, this was now officially an occult artifact. Note that this stuff was not included. Fortunately, people felt that the Infinity Fortuna Spellkit must've been greatly enhanced with power just by being next to tarot cards available at your nearest Spencer Gifts.

This was genius. I found a few twigs while getting the dirt and rocks, so I decided to put them in a glass of red wine and claim that they were 'charged' with mystical, magic powers. I went on this tirade about how these were wishing sticks, and urged the owners to use their wishes carefully.

At this point, anyone with half a brain would realize that bullshit was pouring from my mouth like water from a faucet. Yet, the bidding was fast and furious. People were e-mailing me after the auction was over to see if I had more kits. I could've easily gotten more dirt and put it into a jar, but I was so proud of my evil accomplishment that I took a two week vacation. By the time I got back, the other bidders were so involved in chain letter schemes that they had no interest in my silly 'spellkit'.

So what did the lucky bidder actually recieve? A little glass jar with a plastic lid filled with grass, dirt, rocks, and some shredded money. To make matters even worse, I poured cinnamon oil in the jar, causing the kit to smell worse than a room full of 80 year old grandmothers.

This was by far my greatest eBay accomplishment. Getting someone to literally pay for dirt. What's worse, I charged 5.00 for shipping! This guy spent THIRTY dollars on a glass jar of my backyard dirt saturated in cinnamon oil! Whoooo!

The point? You can make a living on eBay if you really tried. I've already had some people e-mail me after my past eBay cases to tell me that they've tried selling on eBay, and it works. You don't have to be this devious - there's a lot of legit things you can sell. The best way to view eBay is as a giant flea market, where your sales are only as good as your presentation. Write up a silly story or description, and cash in!

Go check out the X-E Archives Pages for more fabulous fun with eBay.

- Matt