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An eBay for the broken-hearted
January 29, 2012 5:20 PM   Subscribe

Never liked it anyway: A website to get rid of unwanted/left-over gifts from bad relationships. There are tales, and tips on moving on.
posted by vidur (41 comments total) 8 users marked this as a favorite

 
Well, this caps off a super depressing weekend for me. Mazeltov. I'll be in a bottle.
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 5:29 PM on January 29, 2012 [4 favorites]


Wow. Can't really figure out what I think about it, but it's a pretty good idea for a business. I read one of the stories (I think the author's name was "Wouldn'tKnowaLineBreakIfItBitMe"), and at the end was this disturbing little comment:
Wow! You have a great story. Being nosy is a good thing. There should be spy classes for girls in school.
And I was a little disturbed.
posted by Glinn at 5:29 PM on January 29, 2012


hugs LastCastle. remember, this too shall pass
posted by supermedusa at 5:33 PM on January 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


"new wedding dress never been worn" except by the person wearing it in the photos.
posted by Gator at 5:38 PM on January 29, 2012


The first thing I thought of when I read this was this deleted scene from High Fidelity which was one of the best scenes from the book.
posted by martinX's bellbottoms at 5:47 PM on January 29, 2012 [4 favorites]


I've been spending too much time on the internet; I thought that said "gifs" when I read the headline ten minutes ago and it took me that long to think "wait, is that right?"

That having been said, a lot of people will tell you to delete all of your gifs when a relationship ends, even the "private" ones, but I'm a sentimentalist.
posted by Earthtopus at 5:50 PM on January 29, 2012


Because nothing truly says "I love you, spend the rest of your life with me," like the second-hand sparkle of dead love.
posted by Skygazer at 6:00 PM on January 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


Back before the Internet, we had bonfires.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 6:02 PM on January 29, 2012 [6 favorites]


If nothing else, this site underlines what a scam jewelery is.

(Wonder how many of these trinkets are destined to reappear again and again, especially when the next person in line finds out the giver got it from FailedRelationshipTokens.com.)
posted by maxwelton at 6:02 PM on January 29, 2012


Ok, ok. Just in case some of you don't get to "tips on moving on" here are some highlights:

*My grandma told me the best way to get over a man is to get under another! It may be true, but so gross to hear from nan.
*Lychee martinis cure all. And the more you have, the greater your daily fruit intake. Win. Win.
*Watch Arrested Development from start to finish. By the time you're done you would have forgotten everything...
*Go outside without a jacket. The physical discomfort will exceed your emotional distress.

(By the way, does one attribute quotes from commenters on blogs? Is it wrong to copy them? Is etiquette involved? Pls send memail if long explanation.)

posted by Glinn at 6:04 PM on January 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Yeah I have nothing against the site in principle, but a lot of the stories (which granted come from confused, frustrated or angry authors) have some pretty ick stuff in them ("Beware those bisexual liars!") and also some pretty ick advice/responses at the end of them.
posted by six-or-six-thirty at 6:08 PM on January 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


This is why I seldom give jewelry. Instead, I give gifts like giant pits dug in the backyard that can easily be filled in or forgotten about.

As for gifts given to me, you'd better believe I've sold all that shit. All of it.
posted by item at 6:15 PM on January 29, 2012


If you don't want to sell it, you can give it to the Museum of Broken Relationships, in Zagreb, Croatia. It's a display of these artifacts, each with a story. Gifts, quotidian objects, sex toys -- there was some sort of fake papier mache breasts donated by the woman whose boyfriend had her wear them during sex. The one I remember the best was a prosthetic leg; the soldier who needed it fell in love with the hospital worker who helped him get the supplies needed to make it during the Balkan wars. The caption concluded with words to the effect that "the leg lasted longer than the relationship. I guess it was made of stronger material." Some more pictures.
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 6:17 PM on January 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


*Watch Arrested Development from start to finish. By the time you're done you would have forgotten everything...

"... I've made a huge mistake."









"Marry me!"
posted by Elsa at 6:17 PM on January 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Glinn - I think one would argue that, unless you are misrepresenting the comments as your own, copying comments for critique/discussion is fair use.
posted by muddgirl at 6:24 PM on January 29, 2012


K-, if you're reading this, I still want my coffee maker back.
posted by ducky l'orange at 6:24 PM on January 29, 2012


I wish I were attractive enough even to have bad relationships.
posted by planet at 6:24 PM on January 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


E____ sang me Richard Strauss' "Wasserrose" for Valentine's Day. With piano accompaniment. In Paris. Some things aren't exactly flammable, donateable, sellable, or returnable.
posted by the painkiller at 6:29 PM on January 29, 2012


The categories are telling. For example:

- Boy stuff: 0
- Jewelry: 33

My take-home conclusion from this is that men who get boy stuff are happy in their relationships, so their partners don't have to leave & sell their jewelry.
posted by UbuRoivas at 6:31 PM on January 29, 2012


Men who get boy stuff are happy with their boy stuff.
posted by Gator at 6:36 PM on January 29, 2012


If nothing else, this site underlines what a scam jewelery is.
posted by maxwelton


Absolutely agree, maxwelton. That was my immediate reaction as well.

"Oh look, the front page is plastered with diamonds. Wow. People still buy those things?"

Is there anyone left alive who hasn't read that Atlantic article by now? In case you missed it : Have You Ever Tried to Sell a Diamond.
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 6:38 PM on January 29, 2012 [8 favorites]


Meanwhile, the red cotton (garage sale gift from his sister) sweater I, um, borrowed from a boyfriend in 1986 and still wear every week? Cold dead hands, pal.
posted by FelliniBlank at 6:39 PM on January 29, 2012


When I was at uni I earned pocket money as a stocktaker; we used to go to people's warehouses, shops, businesses, and count/value their stock, mostly for tax purposes, but also when businesses were being sold or put into receivership. It was boring but varied work, we got to see all kinds of different places. Because I was one of the workers for that company at that time least likely to turn up drunk or high, I often got to do the high-value counts---cigarettes, alcohol, cosmetics, and so on.

One weekend we did a stocktake of a Cash Converters (a franchise pawnshop and moneylender) and after we'd done the power tools and musical instruments and amplifiers and golf clubs and miscellaneous stuff, sure enough, I got the job of going into the back room and making a count of the contents of the safe. This safe was full, absolutely full, of jewellery ranging from cheap thin stuff to the really quite nice antiques even I could see were valuable.

There were wedding rings, engagement rings, rings of all different shapes, bracelets, necklaces, everything. A good proportion of them were engraved, from one partner to another, to husbands from wives, for engagements, special cryptic messages there was no way to tell about. It got to the point I just started staring at the weight of old possessions from other people's relationships, and then one of the workers at the pawnshop noticed me, and said:

"If you think that looks depressing, you don't want me to tell you how much money they all got to hock them".
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 6:55 PM on January 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


Some things aren't exactly flammable, donateable, sellable, or returnable.

That's when you call Lacuna, Inc and have the memory erased!
posted by hippybear at 7:01 PM on January 29, 2012


That's when you call Lacuna, Inc and have the memory erased!

Would any of us actually do this?

I think I might if I was drunk.
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 7:05 PM on January 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Would any of us actually do this?

Oh I dunno. I have at least two people and a small handful of events outside of those relationships I think I'd be better without having them come unbidden back into my mind and wreaking havoc with my mood...

Whether I'd actually do it? I'll wait until the technology is invented and then decide.
posted by hippybear at 7:14 PM on January 29, 2012


PareidoliaticBoy, I hadn't come across that article before. I was fascinated and a little excited, up until I realised that it was written in the 80s and that its predictions of diamond collapse haven't come to pass.
posted by twirlypen at 7:16 PM on January 29, 2012


it was written in the 80s

Early 1981 it seems, since it refers to the upcoming British royal wedding in July, which would have been Charles & Diana.

It's a fascinating history up until that point, though.
posted by UbuRoivas at 7:34 PM on January 29, 2012


Whether I'd actually do it? I'll wait until the technology is invented and then decide.
posted by hippybear


That technology has been around for a year now, you know that. I heard about it from an FPP right here on MeFi. In fact, I remember reading a comment in that post from you, Hippybear. You were going to go in and get a bunch of memories erased, including the one where you decided to have it done. Shame that FPP got erased, cortex said it was "Lacuna Blue".
posted by 445supermag at 7:47 PM on January 29, 2012 [4 favorites]


I hadn't noticed the year of the diamond article until nearly reaching the end and realizing that there were 30 years of history that were going to go unmentioned.

It's interesting: because of the relative newness of the internet, it's easy to tacitly assume that any article you're reading is from some time after, say, 1997. The cognitive dissonance involved in realizing this article was from 1982 (especially after reading 60 or so paragraphs completely unaware) was surprisingly strong.

Also realized: I would like to see de Beers crumble as strongly as I would like the same for Facebook.
posted by nobody at 7:52 PM on January 29, 2012


I heard about it from an FPP right here on MeFi. In fact, I remember reading a comment in that post from you, Hippybear. You were going to go in and get a bunch of memories erased, including the one where you decided to have it done.

I said this?

Hrm. Either I was joking and it had no relationship to my real life, or else it has actually happened and I also had the memory of making that comment erased.
posted by hippybear at 7:53 PM on January 29, 2012


I had a person with whom I bought what we called The Divorce Tandem. A great bicycle built for two people which didn't save the relationship as it was intended to, and subsequently ended up on craigslist for $400. I would drop off my partner at school every day and then ride solo across town to work; after a couple months of this, there was a great little side-note in the Weekly about the upsurge in single guys on tandems, apparently out cruising for dates. But we rode the bike all over the place, a kind of rolling argument ourselves: "Why are you stopping at this stop sign? Just roll through it! You know how hard it is to get restarted from a stop!" At some point we rode up to the Northwest Tandem Rally, and met with piles of ridiculously happy couples and sometimes whole families who cohabited on two wheeled contraptions - we were the only people there under 40. We got a hell of a lot of good use out of that bike, but eventually split up ourselves due to a move and long distance. I'm not actually sure what happened to the bike; I can only imagine it wound up back on craigslist...
posted by kaibutsu at 8:03 PM on January 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


We men are constantly giving the gift of putting up with your female bullshit! Am I right or what, guys?

Guys?
posted by tumid dahlia at 8:04 PM on January 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


daisy daisy give me your answer true
i'm half crazy all for the love of you
it won't be a stylish marriage
i can't afford a carriage
but you'll look sweet
upon the seat of a bicycle built for two!

herbert herbert here is your answer true
you are crazy if you think i'd marry you
you can't afford a carriage
there won't be any marriage
for i'll be twix'd if i'll be hitched
on a bicycle built for two!
posted by bukvich at 8:14 PM on January 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


So, I’m obviously not getting this. Why not put it on ebay or craigslist? Is this just so you can air you personal life in public?
posted by bongo_x at 8:20 PM on January 29, 2012


It's a great idea, except when someone is selling an item that she admits her husband was having sex on when she caught him cheating. Erm. Good luck with selling that.

Also, the used wedding dress thing seems a little creepy to know the details of. If I'm buying a used wedding dress, my imagination can suffice, thanks.
posted by zinful at 8:21 PM on January 29, 2012


Failed relationships can change you in powerful and life affirming ways.

For example, I've grown into a cynical misanthrope with serious trust issues.

I'm a beautiful flower that way.
posted by bardic at 8:21 PM on January 29, 2012 [9 favorites]


Cool Papa Bell: "Back before the Internet, we had bonfires."

Which, thanks to his ex-wife, is why I never got to see a picture of my dad in his army uniform until my 93-year-old grandma finally came across one she had. Thanks for destroying sentimental photographs for any of his future children, dad's ex.
posted by IndigoRain at 3:37 AM on January 30, 2012


I'm totally doing this. Ka-ching.
posted by thinkpiece at 4:04 AM on January 30, 2012


I was fascinated and a little excited, up until I realized that it was written in the 80s and that its predictions of diamond collapse haven't come to pass.
posted by twirlypen


I think that much of the value of that article lies in how it exposes the sordid history of an artificially created and manipulated market, and not necessarily in any special prognostication capability of the writer, twirlypen. Predicting the future is a notoriously difficult task, and not many then foresaw the complete collapse of the Soviet Union within just a few years, either.

While it's true that, as other sources of diamonds have come on-stream since the article was written, DeBeers no longer has the monopoly they once enjoyed; and the Oppenheimer family only sold their 40% interest in De Beers just last year.

Currently, in the U.S, an antitrust settlement of 1/3 of a Billion dollars which was reached only 3 years ago is under appeal. However, many of the key points about the illusion of value attached to diamonds remain true still. I believe that one would be hard-pressed to find any real market for a diamond engagement ring today, which perhaps explains why the first page of that site is mostly diamonds. Certainly that Atlantic article still comes up in the top five results for a search for "diamond market" and the like. I haven't tested this is some time, but in the nineties (at least) it was pretty easy to purchase diamonds for 10% of their "appraised value" at pawn shops and auctions. (Pro tip: customs auctions of seized goods was our best source, in those days.)

Still a major eye-opener for many readers is the truly sordid history behind the diamond trade. Built on the backs of the subjugated blacks, the fortune wrested from the ground so miserably allowed one man to basically buy his own country, and effectively rule a large chunk of the continent.

The techniques applied in the very sophisticated marketing approach to create inflated values for something not intrinsically all that rare are still used today, and (if anything) the diamond scam is even more invidious. The evolution of the model to market new products such as anniversary bands continues unabated, even as artificial diamonds and other options encroach on a once secure and docile market.

Having indoctrinated North American consumers so spectacularly, the rock hawker's slimy tentacles have begun to encompass ever broader market segments. They've also fooled the Japanese, and now have moved onto the Chinese, convincing gullible consumers in Asia into buying their grossly over-priced products.
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 4:23 AM on January 30, 2012 [2 favorites]


to create inflated values for something not intrinsically all that rare

And which, in the process, gave rise to a secondary black market in "blood diamonds". Quite sickening, really.
posted by UbuRoivas at 2:35 PM on January 31, 2012


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