I’m really terrible at buying gifts for people. A lot of times I’m just too spacey to remember to do this; but a lot of times I’m just terrible at getting gifts. Like, why buy something shitty that the person isn’t going to like?
But, when I DO have a great idea, I like to actually attempt to follow through on it.
For example, my friend Sonya collects Magic 8-balls. So the lightbulb went off in my head and I decided to get her one.
I ended up buying a promo 8-ball from the “Lemony Snicket” movie. I’ve never seen the movie, partially because I hate going to the movie theater and partially because I find Jim Carrey extremely annoying. But I figured that Sonya would find the randomness of this product amusing.
Bidding for this particular item started at 99 cents. So, I put in my bid for 99 cents, because, quite honestly, SHIPPING was listed at over $16, and I there is NO WAY in hell that a little Magic 8-ball box would cost $16 to be sent via USPS. My MOM sends me way bigger boxes of stuff for between $8 and $10.
Lo and behold, I win. Clearly there’s not a big rush on Lemony Snicket 8-balls. I was online as the little ebay clock counts down to 0 mins, 0 secs. I win! My total cost is $17 and some change, so I log in to my paypal account, and pay the man. This is literally MINUTES after I win the auction.
Then I wait. And wait. For DAYS.
I don’t buy from ebay a lot – maybe 10 times in the past 10 years or so. But in the vast majority of my transactions, I received a confirmation from the seller, saying thanks for the payment, here’s your shipping tracking number – within 24 hours of my payment. With this particular transaction…nothing.
Four days after I won the auction, I sent the following message:
“Good evening! I was just checking to see when the 8 ball was shipped out, or when it will be shipped out? Thanks so much!”
Sonya’s birthday is drawing nigh, and I’d like to not show up empty handed.
I get no response. So after 4 more days, I send another message. I’m actually kinda fed up. No communication, no item in the mailbox. So my second message explains that this is my second message attempting to contact him, my payment went through but I have not received the item. At this point, I’m asking that the purchase be canceled, and that a refund be credited to me.
THIS is the response I receive:
“o think it already shipped are u cwerain u want me to stop if it hasn’t?”
I respond that if he can confirm it was shipped and provide me with a tracking number, that’s fine. I mention that I’m already a little put off by the lack of confirmation and communication.
He then responds:
“u will have the racking number tom morning i apologize”
I’m clearly dealing with a true professional, as well as a local spelling bee champ.
I do actually get a tracking number the next morning. Clearly, he hadn’t sent it yet, and sent it out the morning I got the number. Regardless, I send him a message thanking him.
“no thank you for your patience Its a great toy too!”
By this time, we’re already 4 days past Sonya’s birthday – I have apologized to her and promised I would have a gift for her soon.
I finally get the Magic 8-ball. Over 2 weeks after I won it. After he actually shipped it, it got to me in a pretty timely manner. It was just getting to the point when he DID actually send it that was the problem. I ended up leaving feedback on the seller’s profile, as you are supposed to. I left a “Neutral” ranking (not Positive, not Negative), and I left this comment in the 140 characters allotted to me:
Slow on comm. & shipping. But, item in good condition. May buy from again.
The next day, I get a message from the guy (2 messages actually) saying that he is blacklisting me.
“I don’t really see what I did to deserve a “blacklisting” from you.
I gave you a NEUTRAL rating, not negative. I made my payment
to you almost IMMEDIATELY after winning the item. And yet it
took 2 emails from me and OVER A WEEK to hear back from you
about my purchase. Most other sellers I’ve dealt with have sent
me a tracking # within ONE DAY and I received the item shortly
thereafter. The 8 ball is as listed, in great condition and the
friend I got it for loved it. But this was definitely the slowest
transaction I’ve ever had on ebay, and I’ve never had to do the
kind of follow up I had to do with you. However, if you wish to
blacklist me, I suppose that is your prerogative. I wish you the
best in your future transactions.”
“anybody that pays .99 for a $15 item then makes demands I dont need”
I haven’t responded to this message. But it pissed me the fuck off. If you want $15 for an item, then you best better start your minimum bid at $15, not 99 cents. This was not a “Buy It Now” offer, this was an auction. So I started my bid at the minimum, and I won. I’m sorry that no one else wanted your Magic fucking 8-ball.
PLUS, with a shipping charge of over $16, so clearly, he’s making some cash on it.
So freakin’ ridiculous.