Friday 2 November 2012

eBay - when it was cool. The year was 1999.

eBay, eBay, eBay...   

Once upon a time, Coder and I were high rollers on the eBay scene.  Ok, more medium rollers, but that is just not as dramatic.
Back in it's founding years, when you could actually make money from it, (which was before their fees became ridiculous) we used to sell vintage game consoles when we were living in Florida.  This is how I came to be living in Florida for those of you that missed the post on how we met

eBay was founded in 1995, we appeared on the scene in 1999, it was an established icon by then and was already used by millions of people.  We tapped into a niche need, the need for revisiting your youth with a trip down memory lane with your favourite game console and more importantly the same games you used to own. 

Mostly we would sell Atari's and the original NES (Nintendo Entertainment System), but we dabbled in pretty much any vintage system, even Apple computers! Sometimes we would get in a really rare game, like Congo Bongo (for Intellivision) or Glib (for Atari).

We would go to Flea Markets and yard sales in the search for old systems and games.  We even had a supplier for awhile there, his name was Walter.  He would ring us weekly (or more often) with his latest 'haul' from yard sales.  It was all very suspicious looking I am sure.  He lived in an apartment complex, and we would meet him in the car park where he would show us the goodies before we handed over a wad of cash and carried off a box or two of 'junk'. Back at the house we would test them, clean them and then bundle them in complete sets with games.  

Leading up to Christmas was the most lucrative time for our little business.  People would get into bidding wars over our systems, and the two highest 'lots' that we sold were $700 and $400.  Unfortunately the $700 was a dud cheque and we never recovered the money for that one.  On average though, they would sell easily for around $100.  Crazy huh!

Then more people started to sell them, it was apparent that there was quite a demand for these old systems.  It also became harder to source good quality second hand items, and Walter became sick and wasn't scouring the yard sales for us as much.  

But for awhile there it was awesome!  Although I did get mighty tired of having to box them all up and cart them off to the Post Office every few days.  Made worse by having to drive Coder's old Geo Storm (or as I affectionately like to call it, the Death Trap).  

 This is the little note we would include inside the box.

I'm linking up with Grace for Flog Your Blog Friday.

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