With a swift hand and a cooperating credit card, you can find some pretty incredible steals on eBay. This online auction and shopping website, which has been around since the early 2000s, allows users to comfortably purchase an unending variety of items and services in the comfort of their own home. You can bid to purchase anything from clothing to furniture to animals. And this article will prove that it’s easy to find some pretty strange things for sale online, as well. Whether you’re looking to purchase someone’s entire life, a grilled cheese that looks like the Virgin Mary, or a small town in California, you can most likely find it on eBay. We bet you’ll be in a shopping mood when you’re done reading this, so make sure you have both your credit card and humor ready because eBay can prove to be one very strange place.
15 Virgin Mary French Toast
We can’t imagine what thoughts would go through our mind if we stumbled across food that looks like the Virgin Mary, but our first thought probably wouldn’t be to sell it on eBay. But, if we did decide to do that, it might prove incredibly lucrative. In 2004, Florida-native Diane Duyser finally decided to auction off her unique grilled cheese, which still hadn’t began to mold since she made it 10 years before that.
Duyser told the Chicago Tribune when she discovered the special sandwich back in 1994, "I went to take a bite out of it, and then I saw this lady looking back at me.” She also claims the grilled cheese has brought luck to her family throughout the years, such as helping them to win $70,000 from the lottery. By the time the auction ended, the infamous grilled cheese had attracted over 1.7 million hits on the website. It was eventually purchased for $28,000 by GoldenPalace.com, an online casino that claimed to have bought it to be a “part of pop culture”.
14 Justin Timberlake's French Toast
If you love your favorite celebrity enough, then you’ll be willing to pay crazy amounts for some crazy items related to them. That’s what happened when someone was willing to pay over a grand for former N’Sync member Justin Timberlake. Back in 2000, the musician/ actor had left behind a plate of half-eaten French toast after wrapping up an interview at a radio station in New York. The DJ at the radio station thought he might be able to make a profit from the Justin’s unfinished breakfast, so he posted it to Ebay.
A 19-year-old fan with some serious cash ended up purchasing the food for a whopping $1,025 – that has the most expensive plate of French Toast we’ve ever heard of. What we’re curious about is what this fan did with their purchase. Did they eat what was left of the French toast? Did they keep it in the fridge forever? Did they have it on display in their room, although mold would be a problem? We want answers now!
13 Advertising Space on a Forehead
Advertising anything is never cheap and that’s especially true in this case. But this form of advertising is truly one of a kind. In 2005, 20-year-old Andrew Fisher thought he had a great idea when he used he listed his forehead on eBay as advertising space. Fisher’s idea was that he would advertise whatever the purchaser wanted by temporarily tattooing his forehead. Though the idea sounds strange and impractical, it actual ended up paying extremely well for Fisher – and we mean literally. Fisher’s forehead sold for an incredible $37,375 to the company behind SnoreStop, a remedy that is supposed to help you curb your snoring woes.
It’s hard to believe a company would actually think someone’s forehead is a good way to advertise. But, that’s exactly what SnoreStop seems to think. SnoreStop CEO Christian de Rivel is quoted as saying, “I look forward to an enjoyable association with Andrew – a man who clearly has a head for business in every sense of the word”. SnoreStop probably got more publicity from the media surrounding this eBay purchase rather than the actual advertisement itself. But, with that hefty paycheck, Fisher probably isn’t complaining.
12 A Single Cornflake
We don’t know why you’d buy a single cornflake when you can go to the grocery store and buy an entire box of them for nearly the same price. But 19-year-old Bill Bennett decided someone in the world would want a single cornflake, so he began his experiment. The teen listed the single cornflake on eBay and eventually sold is for 1.20 euros, which is roughly $1.67.
Of his interesting eBay listing, Bennett said, “There were no takers at first, but then someone offered 1p and it great from there. After a couple days I agreed to sell it for £1.20." Bennett’s sell came at exactly the perfect moment, since eBay had just told him he’d have to remove the listing since he’d not included a “Best Before” date. The teen shared (unsurprisingly) that he had a lot of strange inquiries about the flake, but he’s glad it’s gone to a good home. We’re not sure what home would want a single cornflake, but we guess this story has a happy ending?
11 A Liver
Um, isn’t this illegal? There really isn’t anything you can’t buy on eBay and internal organs are included. One time, a Florida man was in such a desperate financial situation, he was willing to sell his liver through online auction. There are an increasing number of individuals who desperately need an organ transplant, yet the waitlists are insanely long and impractical. Thus, a lot of people turn to back channels in order to secure an organ for themselves. But, these ways often prove illegal, just like the liver for sale on eBay did.
The auction ended up ranking in a whopping $5.7 million before it was shut down by eBay, as you can’t legally sell internal organs or body parts. This crazy price tag shows just how desperate some people are to get their hands on a liver – often, it can be a matter of life or death. Hopefully the man and his liver are doing better finance-wise and that he has found a more reliable way to earn money than selling his organs.
10 The Meaning of Life
If the meaning of life could carry a price tag we’re sure it’d be a huge one, but we’re not sure a seller on eBay could really be selling this secret we’ve chased after for centuries. But, back in 2000, one seller from North Carolina really thought they had the answer. Of the meaning of life, the seller explained, “I have discovered the reason for our existence and will be happy to share this information with the highest bidder.” They were offering to share it with you for only $3.26. Evidently eight people were interested enough to place bids on this vague item – I mean, is this even an item you can actually hold?
Now, if someone is actually offering to share the meaning of life with you for less than a five dollar bill, then you should consider yourself very lucky. However, we’re skeptical about this particular eBay purchase. We wish we could find out what secret the seller would reveal once you pay, but none of the purchasers have yet to come forward with any shocking revelations. It’s safe to say this was another dud of a purchase on eBay.
9 A Dorito Shaped Like the Pope's Hat
When we find a cool looking chip in our bag, we admire it for a second before stuffing it directly into our mouths. But, evidently, that’s not what everyone does. Some people actually list the chip on eBay in hopes someone will be crazy enough to purchase the relatively useless item. In 2005, this happened to one seller who listed a Dorito that was shaped like the Pope’s hat. The chip ended up raking in an impressive $1,209 – a nice paycheck for someone who probably only spent $1.25 on the original bag of chips.
The unique Dorito received over 34 bids before GoldenPalace.com put up over a grand. GoldenPalace.com is the Internet casino that had previously been in the news for purchasing the Virgin Mary Grilled Cheese. Of their unique purchase, CEO Richard Rowe commented, “We believe that this chip, like the Virgin Mary Grilled Cheese Sandwich, is another perfect example of American pop culture.” Okay, whatever floats your boat.
8 William Shatner's Kidney Stone
Kidney stones are a pretty disgusting thing, so we’re not sure why anyone would be willing to spend money on one, regardless if it belongs to a celebrity or not. But that didn’t stop someone from purchasing the kidney stone of famed actor William Shatner, who put it up for sale in 2006 to raise money for the housing charity Habitat for Humanity. The 74-year-old actor’s kidney stone ended up selling for a ridiculous $25,000 to GoldenPalace.com, the same wacky online casino that bought the Dorito shaped like the Pope’s hat and the Virgin Mary Grilled Cheese.
Before the kidney stone sold, Shatner remarked, "This takes organ donors to a new height, to a new low, maybe. How much is a piece of me worth?" And he has a good point. We can’t imagine wanting a physical piece of a person so much that we’d spend such huge amounts of money on a kidney stone. The buyer must have been a huge fan of Star Trek or else we don’t know what prompted this big splurge.
7 Someone's Life
Breakups can be truly heartbreaking, but we’re not sure if they can be disastrous enough to make us want to sell our life away. But that is literally what Ian Usher did back in 2008 after his wife left him. After the finalization of his divorce, Usher posted his famous “life for sale ad” on eBay. He was offering to sell all of his material possession, including his house, friends, and potentially his job as a sales associate, assuming the buyer passes the interview.
Usher eventually sold his “life” for just over $300,000. Since then, things have seemed to go pretty well for him. Usher used the money to start his life of adventure, in which he wanted to fulfill his 100 life goals in only 100 weeks. He has also written a number of books, his most famous being A Life Sold, which Disney is considering making into a full-length movie. If everyone’s life was guaranteed to go this smoothly after selling all of your worldly possessions, we bet a lot more people would be doing what Usher did.
6 Bridgeville, California
This is one real estate purchase that you don’t need a real estate agent for. In 2002, a small town in California named Bridgeville was put up for auction on eBay. Bridgeville became the world’s first town to be auctioned off on the popular website. Until this point, it seemed no one wanted the little town, as it had gone through two different owners in five years. However, shortly after it was listed Bridgeville was sold for a modest $700,000, even though the original highest bidder had backed out. Oddly enough, the town went back up for sale on eBay in 2006 once again, this time selling for double what it had original at $1.25 million.
While it would be cool to have a town all to ourselves, we’re not sure what we’d do with it (besides name it after ourselves, duh). This could be a great strategy business wise, but if you don’t know how to care for a floundering town, then we can’t imagine things turning out very well. Perhaps that’s why this town keeps being re-sold and bough by different people. At this rate, Bridgeville will go back on the market soon and you can have the chance to buy your very own Californian town
5 The Original Hollywood Sign
This purchase may have been the fastest way to ensure you’re a part of Hollywood history forever. In 2005, someone bought the original Hollywood sign for a little over $450,400 through eBay. The famous sign was first built by a real estate company to be a famous landmark in 1923. Since then, the sign (and, later on, its replacements) has become synonymous with the glitzy and glamorous lifestyles of those living in Hollywood.
When the original sign was eventually replaced, it was first bought by a nightclub promoter from the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce and put in storage. Fast forward to 2003 and the sign was sold once again. The new owner, who had paid a price in the six figures for the landmark, began selling pieces of the sign on picture frames and jewelry. Eventually, that same owner listed the sign on eBay for $300,000 where it then sold for over $400,000. Maybe this new purchaser will be a permanent owner for the sign, or else we might be seeing this landmark back for sale sooner rather than later.
4 A Letter from Einstein
We’ll all admit that Einstein was a pretty important guy and his work helped inspire centuries of new scientific discoveries and technologies afterwards. However, we’re unsure that we’d pay over $3 million just to own a handwritten note from the famous physicist. But, in 2012, someone believed this would be a worthwhile purchase. That’s right: a 1954 letter from Einstein to philosopher Erik Gutkin questioning the existence of God sold for $3 million. Someone had some serious cash to spare.
In all seriousness, the auction house that was selling the letter believed the original bidding price would be triple what it was. In the end, the letter sold for only a small amount over the original asking price. But, that’s a serious profit when you consider what the letter was originally bought for. The auction house purchase the letter for a meet $404,000 in 2008, proving this letter could be a worthwhile investment if you use your resources right.
3 An Air Guitar
You might be asking yourself why there’s no item featured in the picture. And that’s because these eBay seller is offering an air guitar – “air” being the important word here. Yes, someone was actually trying to sell an “autographed airguitar” for $15. You’d literally be paying for the box the item came in and the air inside instead of an actual physical product. The mystery still remains who exactly signed this one-of-a-kind instrument, and we might never know.
This isn’t the only “air” product to appear on eBay during its years online. People have tried to sell all sorts of imaginary products- and sometimes people are weird enough to even bid on them. Don’t confuse an “air” product with an actual one, because there’s not too much music you can play on an airguitar. With that being said, if you’re actually in the market and willing to spend money on an imaginary item, then all the power to you. eBay is one of those places you can shop for whatever with zero judgment, so don’t be ashamed if all that’s on your wish list is an airguitar and a set of airdrums.
2 A Ghost in a Jar
If you’re a filmmaker, this purchase could be the inspiration used for your upcoming movie. Or else we don’t know what you’d do with it. An Arkansas seller put sold their ghost-in-a-jar for just under $56,000 – a huge price tag for basically a jar of air. The seller reportedly found the jar in an abandoned cemetery, but they wanted to sell it after claiming the ghoul in the jar had been terrorizing them. The owner even warned potential buyers that they couldn’t be held responsible for anything that happened to them after the transaction.
This whole story is alarmingly unnerving, so we can’t imagine who was enticed to buy such a haunted item. While we doubt there’s an actual ghost living in the jar, having something with such a spooky history in our home is enough to give us nightmares. Whether the new buyer bought the ghost for a joke or because they’re intrigued by the paranormal, we hope they had better luck with their new ghoul friend than the past owner did.
1 The Right to Name a Baby
Being given the right to name someone is a great honor, whether you’re the parent of the child or someone they’ve chosen to have an important role in the child’s life. However, this is one right you can also buy on eBay, evidently. It was 2009 when 36-year old Lavonne Drummond was pregnant with her 7th child as well as in a moderate financial crisis. Unemployed with no steady income coming in and an increasing pile of bills, the Arkansas-native decided to take a creative route to earning some cash. She decided to give up the right to naming her unborn son and instead offered to let someone do it for money over eBay.
Unfortunately, this is one strange item that didn’t do very well in the online auction. eBay was initially unreceptive to Drummond’s idea, so it shut her auction down the first four times, even though it reached a bid of $41,000. He fifth auction came to a close at the end of August, but only reached $6,800. Even worse, the bidder then revealed he had no intention of paying the money or naming Drummond’s baby, and had instead only been trying to help the auction gain traction. As she was due that September, Drummond finally ended the auction. We hope Drummond’s family is in a better place financially nowadays. But, seriously, we want to know the name of that child!
We don’t know about you, but this has given us some ideas about everyday things we can make a decent profit off of by selling it on eBay. Seriously, you could become a millionaire just by selling an internal organ or you can completely transform your life by selling a jar that you claim is haunted by a ghost. eBay has proven to be more than just an online auction where you can by ordinary items. Instead, this website has proved to change lives (and make for some very real headlines). While some of the sellers of these strange items may have been in financial trouble at the time, we hope they resolved their difficulties. And to those who bought any of these weird products, we hope they didn’t just aimlessly spend their change (yeah, we’re slightly judging all of you) and actually found their purchases useful. Now, if you’ll excuse us, we have some browsing on eBay to do.