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Sunday, October 31, 2010

The 6 dollar printer

My friend MD asked me a query about my blog last night :

MD: "so when you say e-diary, (from my first post) does that mean you write about things that has happened to you today?"
me: "well anything interesting that's ever happened to me, really"
MD: "so all these stuff did not happen on the day you were writing the post?"
me: "yeah.. some of them happened a couple of months befo-
MD: "so even though you clearly said this was a diary, you still posted stuff that happened ages ago?"
me: "uhm. yeah?"
MD: "you fail at english."

well technically she was right. But if i'd posted only the stuff that had happened to me on the day, it would look something like this:
today i ate. and slept. and studied. and slept.

yesterday was pretty boring for me, so I posted something else that happened a while ago but was worth posting. It may be called an e-diary, but I have 18 years of my life that I haven't posted yet, so it should be completely reasonable to pull off funny and interesting moments of my life, even though it didn't happen on the day right?

well anyway, since people like MD were complaining about my lack of understanding of the english language, I shall post something about my day today, which happens to have actually been a bit interesting.

The day started with me fidgeting in bed because I have been having weird dreams. Why was I having weird dreams? Because I was worried. What was I worried about? I was worried about ebay.

Yesterday, after T sent me the picture of the MAXIMA logo he bought for me, I checked out ebay for interesting stuff that was on sale. I came across this printer that was on auction and was selling for 99 cents at the time. I was suspicious, but still I thought to myself, "hey that's really cheap". So I did a little investigation, whether the printer that was on sale was a good printer, whether the ink cartridges are economically efficient, whether the seller was trustworthy, and finding out why the seller was selling a decent looking printer at such a cheap price.

I spent almost half the day checking prices, comparing with other printers and literally stalking the seller's account, looking at his seller's ratings, costumer satisfaction, other items he was selling, real name, home address, telephone number, spouse's name, relationship status, whether he was a dog or a cat person. OK I'm not that stalkerish. But I came to this conclusion: he is moving out of his place and he's pretty much giving away his stuff (like his sofa and his coffee tables). I also think that he can be trusted, according to most people who have bought his items.

So the auction ended the morning after (which was this morning) at 10.50am and so I decided to go to sleep before bidding. I was thinking of doing what E calls 'sniping' - a move where you bid in the last couple of seconds, suddenly appearing out of the blue and unexpected so people cannot react quick enough to re-bid. like a ninja. I slept at 3 and was worried whether I was able to wake up early enough to bid. Last night dreams such as: me not waking up in time or the seller suddenly withdrawing the sale haunted me in my sleep. The dreams were so real that I was convinced that I had lost the bid already, even though it was still only 8.00. But luckily I figured out it was a dream and I woke up in time.

Only 15 minutes to go, I got bored of waiting for the timer to count to the last couple of seconds. So I looked around my laptop for things to do, and I found MONOPOLY, the board game in a video game format. I started playing.

After buying 'Broadwalk', one of the dark blue streets and losing horribly, I realized that I have been playing for a while. ALT+TAB to Google Chrome and the first thing I saw : "THE BIDDING HAS ENDED, PRINTER SOLD FOR $11"

at that time, my face was stuck for about 10 minutes in this expression:

After I cried for a while (did not actually happen) I was so determined on getting a new printer, I decided to find another one.

I looked around ebay, and found out that there are actually a lot of people trying to sell off their old junk for really cheap prices. I was pretty happy. I found this one printer that has not been used for 2 years and ran out of ink, but bidding expires in the next 3 hours. Starting price was 1 dollar and there was only one bidder : "chance" I thought.

So I returned to MONOPOLY and played around for an hour, helped my sister copy photos to my mum's digital photo album and before I realized, there was only 40 minutes left until the bidding ends, and there was still only 1 bidder. 

By the time 20 minutes was up, I was fully prepared. I showered, went to the toilet, drank a can of RedBull, fully awake, one hand on mouse ready to click 'bid' and the other hand in my pants I mean, on the keyboard to type in a value for bidding. 2 minutes to go. Still 1 bidder. 1 and a half minute. Still 1 bidder. Then suddenly I got distracted and ended up at Google searching for a timer app for my phone, but then I remembered about the auction and looked back, 45 seconds to go, I screamed out, "SH*T"

I suddenly clicked 'bid' and typed in 2 dollars. The screen went blank indicating a new page was opened, then something unexpected happened: I WAS NOT LOGGED IN TO EBAY! GAAAAAHHHHH

However, 2 years of having the same password for every login page I know had helped me out, I typed my password in as fast as I could, and returned back to the bidding page with 30 seconds to go. 2 bucks. bid.

"ANOTHER MEMBER HAD BID AT A HIGHER VALUE, YOUR BID WAS DISREGARDED" message came up, and I panicked. I put down 3 bucks. bid. the same message came up. it said the last bid was 5 dollars. I bid again, 5 seconds to go. 6 dollars, and with superhuman speed I reached for my mouse, aimed it at 'confirm' and clicked. Time felt like it was moving 10 times slower. blank page.

The page reloaded, and it says, "bidding has ended. printer sold for $6". At that second, I lifted my arms signalling victory and satisfaction. I felt pretty proud of myself.

So that was the story of how I bought myself a 10 year old printer that has not been used for 2 years for $6. Later on I told ET my marvelous and epic achievement: 

ET: "so.... do you know if it's still functioning?"
me: "well, no. but he did say it was still working 2 years ago"
ET: "to sum it up. you wasted $6 buying a printer that probably won't work anymore, without knowing whether it was compatible with your operating system, from some bloke you've never met before?"
me: "yup," I said in a tone that a person would use when he was in the proudest moment of his life.
ET: "you are such an idiot."

So I just sent the seller a message, and we are planning to meet up tomorrow at 1 outside Target. At least I get to meet him in public. That way he can't kidnap me, kill me and eat me for dinner.

Let's hope the printer still works. My $6 I've been saving up the last year will not go to waste!


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