November 10th, 2004

abstract butterfly

swap shop

Someone wrote a response to my Craig's list ad which sought aquariums and aquarium supplies. The respondent had an aquarium for sale between 30 and 50 gallons. I like the indeterminancy of that phrase "30 to 50 gallons". The person who answered my ad said "make an offer". I think that making an offer on something in response to an e mail is a tricky thing. One wishes to substantially discount one's offer, because there is no point to buying used and paying real prices. But one wishes to ensure one is at least in the ballpark, so as to gain either acceptance or a nearby counter-offer. I sent off my offer into the ether. The ether is silent. My offer descended into a black hole. I suppose I have yet to master the art of aquarium negotiation. Overall, the response to my Craig's List ad has been disappointing--only two replies. I know in some cities, Craig's List is as useful as an old-time newspaper classified ads. I remember when such ads were free or cost very little money, depending on the paper.

The best day I ever had in locating used aquarium supplies came when I was a teenager. I called the local radio program "Swap Shop" to try to locate aquariums. Someone responded, and sold me a couple of tanks and all the supplies I could want for five dollars. I should try to figure out who in Dallas runs one of those radio "swap" programs. I could put on my best theatrical voice, and intone "ummm....thanks for, uh, taking my call. I'm looking for....a good, used, aquarium.....and um, you know, in 5, 10, 20 or 30 gallons,, I guess, that's it....and the number to call is GU 5-1111", except, sadly, they got rid of those letters at the beginning of phone numbers and put numbers in instead.

Do you remember the phone number from when you were a kid? Mine was 501-353-2422.