The other night, I got it in my head that I was going to try to find a vinyl copy of Crowded House’s 1991 album Woodface. It’s one of those albums, like so many 90s albums, that is not easy to find on vinyl since by that point, most labels weren’t bothering to produce vinyl copies of albums any longer. It’s insanely expensive on Amazon ($125) and only slightly less expensive on Discogs ($68, but you have to pay to ship it from Spain, which practically doubles the price of the album.) So I went looking where I hardly ever look – eBay.
I used to be a big eBay guy back in the late 90s, back when it was loaded with bootleg CDs by my favorite artists. But then along came Napster and the bottom fell out of the bootleg market and I mostly abandoned eBay. Even if it hadn’t been that, I was pretty close to quitting eBay altogether because I hate the concept of an auction. The bidding war frenzy of an auction’s final moments drove me to drink and really, how many of those times was it the seller’s friends trying to artificially drive the price up? I lost so many auctions in the last seconds that I found myself more frustrated than anything. I’d actually rather pay a little bit more for something and buy it outright rather than dealing with that foolishness.
When I went to eBay, I saw Woodface for $8.99, and only $4 shipping. I couldn’t resist.
I originally put in a max bid of $30, but then Heidi told me that I should go with what you’d be willing to pay + about $5 so that when it sailed past that point, you didn’t feel the need to go and rebid over and over until you’re so much higher than you ever expected to be. You have to balance what you’re willing to pay with paying just slightly more than what would make you sick. So I upped my max bid to $45.
It only took about a half hour for this to happen.
It was at this point that I was reminded all over again why I hate eBay.
I just checked and it’s still stuck at $46, but I’m not going to bid anymore. There’s a buy-it-now copy for about $49, but it’s in the UK, so it’ll cost around $22 to ship.
Buying vinyl online is easy for the most part, but nothing beats digging through crates trying to find stuff. And I almost hope that’s how I find Woodface – some random afternoon when I’m totally not expecting to find it.