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August 10, 2003: Bookish

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I think that after last night, I should probably ban myself from going back to eBay for a rather long time. I have probably reserved far too much money in the last 24 hours, even though it's my personal money and I've very carefully avoided touching the joint account out of which we have to do important things like pay mortgage and insurance and other bills. And what am I spending all this money on, you ask? Books. Or rather, more specifically, Nancy Drew books.

To be fair, there are a few devil duckies in the mix, since every once in a while I go poking around on eBay when I get really bored, and devil duckies are one of those things I look for. I found a hot pink one and a purple one and best of all, one done entirely in camouflage and how, I ask you, was I supposed to just walk away from any of those without bidding? It was probably for the best that the one book of sheet music I really wanted was up to about $50 and there is just no way I am willing to pay more than $20 for it because that's about what I paid for all the others, and then for whatever reason I decided to see what was available for Nancy Drew books and oh my god there were pages and pages of them up for auction and it was really late at night and I was a little wired for some reason and unable to sleep so before I knew it I had suddenly acquired a rather impressive list of auctions in which I was actively bidding.

I know how cheesy these books are, and yet I still went on this bidding binge for more of them. There are always two completely separate mysteries that somehow end up linked together and interspersed amid the discussion of clues and shifty characters are the inevitable comments about the matronly housekeeper, and Nancy's cousins, and of course the lengthy descriptions of the smart and oh-so-stylish outfits Nancy and her pals wore while fending off bad guys. I started getting them when I was a little girl and then once I was older I started actively looking for the ones I was missing, and actually managed to score some of the really old prints, back when they came with book jackets and Nancy had a 50's hairstyle on the cover and still referred to Ned Nickerson as her "favorite date", before they went and updated the pictures and the language to more 'modern' standards. And for whatever reason, I have always had this little secret desire to finish up the collection, as long as I could find the earlier versions.

I did drag the laptop into the guest room where all the kids' and young adults' books are stashed, and I did a really quick spreadsheet listing all the books I currently have plus their numbers and then I went poking around on Google until I found a site that lists all the old series and figured out the names of the ones I was missing and then hit eBay with a vengeance.

So far I've won about twelve or so and I think I have another five or six pending (plus the devil duckies. One cannot ever forget the devil duckies. And actually, the word 'won' isn't exactly the most appropriate, since if we go by the usual assumption that winning means getting something for free, technically I really didn't win squat (except perhaps the chance to fork out some cash)). I also keep logging into eBay to check on the time remaining on all the rest, and the ping of arriving email sends me scrambing for the inbox to see if maybe another one finally closed and maybe I won. But the main point here is that I am well on my way to finishing off that collection. There are a still a few I haven't been able to find, and it's possible I may not be the top bidder on some of the still-pending auctions, but that's okay for now. I think my eBay binge has been accomplished for this half of the year and perhaps it's actually better to leave a few left to aspire to, months down the road when I finally release myself from eBay probation.

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