Weird News: Unbelievable Junk Sold on eBay

The Strangest Items Found on eBay

By Buck Wolf

Aug. 20, 2002 --   I thought I was doing well when I put a molar under my pillow and got a dollar from the tooth fairy.

Imagine my profound sadness when I heard someone sold used dentures last year on eBay for $38.99. Another guy sold his wisdom teeth for $20.

After leafing through all the unbelievable junk in Marc Hartzman's Found on Ebay (Universe), I may never look at a trashcan the same way again.

I may even sell my trash can. I'll even throw in all the contents. Anyone care to make an opening bid?

Even if you look beyond the "genuine" dinosaur poop, the Enron ethics manuals, and garden gnomes shaped like John F. Kennedy, you wouldn't believe what can be found on eBay. And what sells.

Look at these eBay specials: two "rare" mutant M&Ms that are joined like Siamese twins (final selling price: $1); a monkey-shaped peach pit ($5.55); a penis-shaped Cheeto ($1.25) and a "real" hornet's nest (hornets not included, $2.55).

Hartzman's book beautifully illustrates all these treasures. But perhaps it'd be more interesting to see pictures of the buyers.

Key Word: Gross

"People sell all these things, not just because they can, but because it's fun," said Hartzman, a 27-year-old advertising copywriter who collects circus and sideshow memorabilia.

"As for buyers, I think each one has his own story."

To find weird eBay merchandise, all you have to do is go to the Web site's search engine and plug in random words, like "gross" or "disgusting."

Pop in the right word and you might find a "used but clean" Speedo style swimsuit ($20.50) that a middle-aged man wore in the early 1990s, when he "was younger and had a body."

Bidding for that swimsuit started at $4. Not bad.

The Yard-Sale Mentality

If eBay and other Internet auction sites have energized America's yard-sale mentality, they have also given rise to a new form of self-expression: The joke sale.

When a piece of French toast partially eaten by Justin Timberlake sells for $1,025, there's a simple explanation. He's Justin Timberlake. He's in 'N Sync. Anything he touches is gold.