In the 10 + years I've been a member of eBay, I've seen my fair share of bat-shit crazy, but the story I'm about to tell you takes the cake...
So I have a gazillion winter coats -- long, short, cashmere, fleece...you name the style and fabric, and it is probably hanging in one of the bulging closets in this house. I need another one like I need a hole in my head. But because every other day brings with it "winter vortex" temperatures or three feet of snow, it was easy to convince myself that I needed this Lands' End long puffer coat:
The quick and dirty is that the coat wasn't my size, it was, in fact three sizes too big. But it was a beautiful brown color, NWT, and was listed for a rock-bottom BIN price of $39. How in the hell was I supposed to pass this up?
I couldn't. And I didn't. I bought the coat immediately.
But this listing wasn't without a few shortcomings: The seller had only two transactions to her name -- this may not have necessarily been a bad thing, but I'm just saying, it's not a good thing either. Regardless, I threw caution to the wind, because this coat was just too damn good to let go.
So I encounter the first speed bump right off the bat when I click the BIN button, agree to the purchase, and am led to PayPal...
...and immediately an error message pops up that says that the seller isn't set up to receive payment through PayPal.
I have never heard of such of thing.
So I e-mail the seller through the eBay messaging system to inform her of this problem, which is clearly on her end.
Before she can even respond, an eBay rep leaves me a voicemail on my cell phone. (Of course DD has an epic blowout, which I'm busy responding to, and thus can't answer my phone.) I play back the message more times than I can count because the rep's accent is so thick, all I can verifiably understand is the word Hello. Through straining my ears I am able to hear that the gist of her explanation involves informing me that the seller must send me a manual invoice via PayPal and needs my PayPal e-mail to do so.
There's only one problem: the eBay messaging system prohibits the exchange of personal e-mail addresses over their system in an effort to prevent fraudulent acts.
This shit is about to get interesting, I think to myself.
An hour goes by. Then two. Still no word from the seller. I prod her again through eBay messenger. Her problem? She can't figure out how to send a manual invoice. I tell her to call PayPal.
The third hour goes by. And then, the forth. I reach out to her again. Her response in written form? I don't...I don't understand any of this...I wish I knew what was wrong on my end...
Dear, Lord, Lady! Stop trying to build the clock, when all you need to know is the time. Just follow the directions from PayPal and send me the damn manual invoice!
Then...nothing. Communication with the seller comes to a screeching halt. I'm beginning to wonder if this is all a sham. I message her yet again. Get a load of her latest response: I can't figure this out. I don't know what else to do. I'm giving up.
Um, you can't, bey-otch, I want to say. Were you going to tell me about your latest bright idea had I not messaged you? Ugh. I seriously want to choke her at this point. Her next reply:
I'll just go ahead and send you the coat for free.
I don't know what to think at this point. Is there an adult behind all of this brain matter? Or is it a four-year-old playing around on her mommy's computer? I tell her that I can't accept her offer to send me the coat for free, although it is tempting. She then says I can just mail her a check...but she will send me the coat first to ensure that I even want to keep it. I agree to this.
Two days later, the coat arrives. It's in pristine condition, but larger than a tent. I call my tailor and ask if he can work his magic. He promises he can. I mail off the check.
So that's where we are. I'm taking the coat in tomorrow. I sure hope all this craziness wasn't for naught.
And I sure hope that, for the sake of other poor, unsuspecting souls on eBay, that this seller never again lists anything else on eBay.