17 Weird, Wacky and Downright Strange Things Sold on eBay
Where can you sell off your entire life, buy a whole town and populate it with ghosts? Why, eBay, of course! Since the site’s inception in 1995, eBay has been the middle man for countless listings. And while most of those listings are for something like a nostalgic toy from your childhood, or a custom cover for your smartphone, others are for some weird stuff. Some very, very weird stuff. Like these 17 items.
Fake Lint From Steph Curry’s Hair
Drake, the multi-millionaire rapper and Toronto Raptors ambassador, is known for his sideline antics at NBA games. But he really upped his troll game during Game 1 of the 2019 NBA Finals. He showed up to the court wearing a Dell Curry jersey and then surreptitiously picked a sliver of lint out of Warriors point guard Steph Curry’s hair while the two talked smack (Dell Curry is Steph Curry’s father, who played for the Raptors). Drake set the exchange to dramatic music and posted it on his Instagram, and said he would be auctioning off the curious Curry lint on eBay.
Alas, Drake never actually put the lint up for sale under his eBay profile draymondshouldntwear23, which was created the night of the hair picking. Instead, over 200 eBay users jumped on the chance to troll Curry and the Warriors by using Drake’s Instagram photo to profit. Some tried selling $100 shirts, a photo of Drake’s hand with the lint or just stuck the “draymondshouldntwear23” name into their listing for views.
But one user — presumably the first — managed to get 180 bids with a going price of $99,900 but was sure to add that the lint was just a “replica.” While we doubt anyone will actually pony up that money, this new piece of eBay history was just too entertaining to ignore.
The Crypt Above Marilyn Monroe
Decades ago, baseball legend Joe DiMaggio sold his crypt to a man named Richard Poncher. Poncher then made it one of his dying wishes to be buried face down, so he may gaze eternally at the plot below him, which belongs to Marilyn Monroe. Poncher passed away in 1986.
In 2009, his wife, Elsie Poncher, needed to pay off the mortgage, so she put her dead husband’s plot up for sale on eBay for $500,000. The bidding wars were ferocious, leaping into the seven figures, until they finally rested at $4.6 million. But the winning bidder never paid up. Nor did the next bidder, or anyone at all; no one even tried to purchase the plot for the starting bid. The whole thing fell through.
“They were all phony balonies,” Elsie told the Los Angeles Times.
Poncher is still buried above Monroe. Hugh Hefner moved in next door after he passed away in 2017; he had purchased the plot adjacent to Monroe in Pierce Brothers Westwood Village Memorial Park for $75,000 in 1992.
Ghost in a Jar
In 2003, a curious jar, which looks like something inspired by the “The Blair Witch Project,” appeared on eBay. The seller wrote that they were using a metal detector in an “old abandoned cemetery” and came upon a wooden box. Inside were two glass jars and a journal, but the seller broke one! And a “black mist or something seeped out.” Later that night, this poor seller was attacked by “The Black Thing,” a malevolent black spirit that occasionally appears when the jar is near.
Along with this sale, which started at $99, came a few black and white photos and their best recollection of what remained in the journal, because faking an old journal is more expensive than just printer paper. The ghost jar went viral, and received numerous fake bids which stretched up to eBay’s then-maximum rate of $99.99 million, until finally settling on the winning bid of $50,922. The buyer never paid up.
Take My Grandfather’s Ghost, Please
In 2004, a 6-year-old boy was convinced that his grandfather’s ghost was haunting him, so his mother placed his walking cane on eBay, assuring the young boy that his grandfather’s spirit would follow the cane to the winning bidder. The haunted cane did come with one stipulation — that the new owner write a letter to the boy, telling him that his grandfather “is there with you and you’re getting along great.”
The cane sold for $65,000 (about $84,000 today). The winning bidder? None other than GoldenPalace.com, the gambling site notorious for buying up oddities in exchange for free press.
One Man’s Entire Life
After getting a divorce, Ian Usher decided he was going to sell almost everything at auction. Usher, a Briton living in Australia, cast his Jet Ski, car, motorcycle and home (and everything inside it) on eBay in 2008.
It might sound depressing, but this story has a happy ending.
The entire lot sold for $305,000, and Usher embarked on a journey to tour the world and complete his 100-item bucket list, which included skydiving, seeing the Northern Lights, mountain climbing, riding an ostrich and running with bulls. Ten years later, he found a new love and achieved 94 out of 100 of those goals. And, of course, he has a TEDx Talk.
The Meaning of Life
In 2000, someone claimed to have found the meaning of life and put it up for sale. “I have discovered the reason for our existence and will be happy to share this information with the highest bidder,” wrote the seller. The item went up for one cent (a missed opportunity to list it for $42), and the winning bid was only $3.26. The seller has great feedback, so we assume the buyer was satisfied.
Guinea Pig Battle Armor
We love our pets, but a surprising number of people do not outfit them in scale mail armor before sending them out to explore the scintillating mysteries of the world. This eBay seller decided to take a stance for Guinea pig pet battle protection and created a full-body scale armor for their friendly rodent. This armor sold for $24,300 on eBay in 2013, and all proceeds went to benefit the Metropolitan Guinea Pig Rescue in the Virginia and Washington D.C. area.
If you want to outfit your dog or cat for a trip to the Renaissance faire or before a walk through a tough (or should we say, ‘ruff’) neighborhood, Etsy has some honest-to-goodness pet armor for sale.
A three-month investigation by MSNBC in 2005 uncovered an online steroid-selling ring using eBay as a front. Sellers simply disguised their bids as “books about steroids,” but the listing clearly showed pictures of anabolic steroids and were priced accordingly. Since then, eBay has beefed up security.
The Personal Details of Terrorists
An MI6 agent forgot to wipe his memory card before selling his Nikon digital camera on eBay in 2005. The unsuspecting buyer, who won the Nikon for only $30, discovered a bunch of odd documents after transferring the photos he took to his computer. Imagine his surprise when the faces of al Qaeda members, finger prints, academic records and photos of rockets launchers and missiles appeared alongside his vacation photos. The camera also contained top-secret information about MI6’s computer system. Oops.
Good thing the buyer didn’t go and flip it to the Russians for a hefty profit.
Want your own Chucky? Head on over to eBay’s long list of haunted dolls from sellers claiming their spooky porcelain and plastic figurines are occupied spirit vessels. It’s apparently a whole market on eBay and Etsy — each of these dolls comes with a named spirit and a bio detailing their origin story, personality and powers (and perhaps reasons for their future homicidal rampage). Prices range from $25 to several hundred and even thousands of dollars.
This Guy’s Facebook Data
After the Cambridge Analytical scandal of 2018, one man decided to take control over who could buy access to his personal Facebook data. Oliver Frost of London downloaded his Facebook data, stuck it on a thumb drive and put it up for sale on eBay. Within a few days, the 26-year-old’s data reached a high bid of $393 before eBay pulled the listing and accused him of selling a Facebook account, which is against eBay UK’s terms and conditions.
You can still buy Frost’s data from his website. You can do just about anything with his data, although he denies the permission to “steal my identity and open a sweatshop.” Well, what good is it then, Frost?
A Ghost Town
Houses are routinely put up for sale on eBay. But entire towns? Not so much. In 2007, the town of Albert, Texas, popped up on eBay for a reserve price of $2.5 million. While that listing drummed up headlines and curious onlookers, it didn’t actually sell until 2009. By then the price had been reduced to $883,000, but the final sale price remains undisclosed. The Easley family, who bought the town, has since turned it into a wedding venue. Albert also has a bar which is open five days a week — but no one actually lives there.
Britney Spears’ Gum
In 2004, someone came up with a minty fresh idea: to put post some leftover chewing gum on eBay and attribute it to Britney Spears. Of course, it could have been genuine, but there is no way of knowing — according to CBS, there were over two dozen of these auctions on eBay, most selling for $5 to $100. One of the sticky items reached $14,000, but that was only because the price was inflated by someone bidding against themselves. Because, honestly, who would spend over a thousand dollars on some celebrity’s leftovers?
Justin Timberlake’s Leftovers
In 2000, rising *NSYNC star Justin Timberlake left behind two pieces of French toast after a radio interview for the New York-area station Z-100. The DJ, in a pretty brilliant buzz-generating move, put the leftovers up for grabs on eBay. A few enthusiastic fans got into a bidding war over the scraps, with one 19-year-old girl dishing out $1,025 for JT’s discarded breakfast.
“I’ll probably freeze-dry it, then seal it…then put it on my dresser,” the winning bidder told Entertainment Weekly. Do you think she still has it?
Virgin Mary, à La Carte
It’s arguably the most famous eBay auction of them all. Diana Duyser of Southern Florida, served herself a grilled cheese sandwich and took a bite. But as she withdrew the cheese goodness away from her teeth, she noticed something astonishing on the toasted exterior: the visage of the Virgin Mary.
If Duyser is to be believed, the lunchtime apparition occurred in 1994, 10 years before she placed the item for sale on eBay in 2004. Heavens-high bids caused the listing to be removed temporarily, but the auction site re-listed the faithful meal after GoldenPalace.com convinced eBay that it would deliver a kingly sum. The gambling site won the auction with a $28,000 bid (about $37,700 today).
William Shatner’s Kidney Stone
After the endlessly entertaining William Shatner passed a kidney stone, he put the intestinal rock up for sale on eBay in 2006. Once again, GoldenPalace.com came in with a bid, offering $15,000 for some of Captain Kirk’s internal memorabilia. Shatner contended that other “Star Trek” relics had fetched far more and countered with $25,000. GoldenPalace.com accepted; the money was donated to Habitat for Humanity.
A Human Kidney
Human organs are in high demand — if you can’t get to the top of the transplant wait list, why can’t you just buy one on eBay? Unfortunately (or fortunately), it’s a federal crime, which can lead up to five-years and/or up to a $50,000 fine. But that didn’t stop this 1999 eBay auction from taking off.
"Fully functional kidney for sale,” read the listing. “You can choose either kidney. Buyer pays all transplant and medical costs. Of course only one for sale, as I need the other one to live. Serious bids only.”
The kidney, which was likely a hoax, hit a high bid of $5.7 million before eBay delisted the organ. Besides, the price was ridiculous — black market kidneys only go for $150,000 in most major metro areas.