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I’ve just participated in my first Ebay auction.  I have to say, the process nearly killed me.  In those last few moments as the wicked, self-centered, anonymous woman competed from across the globe with me for the boots I’d been longing for for several years, I felt like a high strung gambler on crack.  Let me rewind for a bit.  But before I do, feast your eyes for a moment on these – my eventual prize – to slake your no-doubt growing thirst for this story:



These lovely things will tide you over as I collect my thoughts:



New cyber things loom large to feel intimidating to me.   I’m sure I was the last of my friends to try online shopping.  As my fingers hovered over the keyboard to enter in my credit card number for the first time, I was certain that some hacker somewhere waited with baited breath for me to do so.  I just knew in my bones that he would shortly clean out my bank account and leave our family bereft, and with an expensive SUV purchased on our now non-existant credit.  So far, I have adeptly eluded him and his ilk, but you can now perhaps understand why my most recent foray into the world of Ebay felt like a really big deal to me.  A really big, stressful deal.

The auction that drew me – strong and magnetic enough to counteract all my malevolent-hacker-guy concerns – was 10 days long.  It’s since been pointed out to me by one more in the proverbial Know that I was unwise to begin the bidding process so early on.  I only accomplished setting the wheels in motion for a bidding war to swirl taxingly about my ears.  And swirl it did. 

She and I batted our bids back and forth, no doubt to the tremendous unseen glee of the seller.  My competitor waged her war incrementally.  I waited hours and sometimes days between lobbing my bids her way, and upped the ante significantly each time, hoping that I’d stress her out in the process.  Wise?  I’m not sure.  In the end, my entire family (one of whom came accompanied by a friend, who seemed as enthusiastically traumatized as all the rest of us) gathered around the computer alongside me.  I love my people.  In the final ten seconds, I entered a new maximum bid, lurching the potential selling price up by a stomach-turning $50.  My moment of resounding triumph was all the sweeter because I didn’t end up paying that controversial $50.  A mere additional $2.50 was all that was required in the end.  The room erupted in a cacaphony of hoots and hollers, the noisiest of which – it must be confessed – came from my own vocal chords. 

It’s a brave new world, cyberfriends.  But I have some new boots to comfort me as I find my way through it’s circuitous paths.