Jewish World Review Feb. 11, 2004 / 19 Shevat, 5764

David Grimes

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Consumer Reports

Pleeze by sum stuph frum me | I read in the paper that people are picking up great bargains on eBay by looking around for misspelled words.

Few of the millions of people who visit this giant online auction site bid on items that are misspelled or accompanied by a vague description, according to a New York Times News Service story.

As a result, one guy was able to pick up a set of pocket watch gears -- spelled "gers" -- for $2 and resell them for $200. Others have gotten great buys on antiks (antiques), bycicles and telefones.

While some may see this as simply another example of the decline of civilization, or at least that segment of civilization that is too lazy to punch the button of its computerized spell checker, I look at it as a way to turn a modest profit.

Since I have nothing of any value to sell, but do own an enormous amount of junk, this could be a good way to unload some of my trash and clutter onto some poor soul who thinks he's getting a bargain.

One possible eBay ad might read: "Asordid collidge textbooks, nevir red, including 'Keenzeyun Economick Theery As It Purrtains To The Pryce Of Widjuts,' 'Logrhythms, Al Gore Rhythms and Quaderratic Equayjuns Explaned Sew Even An Inglish Majer Can Unnerstand It' and 'The Auge of Enlitenmint For Dummeys.' In addishun, vareious 900-paje Roosian novuls, also nevir red, inclewding 'The Dawn Floes Down Two The See and Leeves Beehind a Lot of Silt,' 'Won Day in the Lyfe of Eyevun Denisovichsolzhenitsyn That Seams to Last Longer Than Most Prezidental Administrashuns' and 'Wore and Peas' witch I think yule find makes an egg selling dorestop."

A second ad would seek bids for less valuable stuff:

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"Vareous vinul wreckurds that have bin sitting in my attack fore at lease 10 years and are now probibubly nuthing moor than a big pudul of black goo becuz the avridge simmertime temporature up thair is wot yewd norm lee ass sousa ate wid the serfus of Venus knot that I've bean thair off course butt buy the same toucan ids hard two imajun how any of this wood make Joe Cocker sownd any less intelligibible and in fack id mide evun hep."

And finally some items that might be hard to move, even on eBay:

"Slitely uzd cowch that is nough pritty much eggs sklusively aukupied buy are too pugs bee cuss know hew man or hew woman wid any cents wood tuch the thing wid any port of his or her booty bee cuss their are things larking underbeneeth the seet kushins that I will nut describble two yew in da tail becuz I no childrun and the elder lee sumtimes vizit this sight and its all sew posse bill that your eating brekfust now witch wood not be good. Machine threw pillows inklooded free at know egg straw charge bud I wooden take um if I wore you."

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JWR contributor David Grimes is a columnist for The Sarasota Herald Tribune. Comment by clicking here.


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01/28/04: Warning: Labels on products are getting wackier and wackier
01/21/04: It's a computer! No, it's a side dish! Skeptical? Look under the hood
01/07/04: Nursery rhymes to scare the kids by
12/30/03: Ear-scratcher fingered by police
12/24/03: Gifts for that not-so-special someone
12/18/03: Things we hate to do
12/09/03: Keep your name out of this book
12/03/03: When tots control the world
11/18/03: Danger: TVs falling from above
11/11/03: Songs that won't go away
11/04/03: Keep technology away from the monkeys
10/29/03: A career of sensational regrets
10/22/03: Ig Nobels reward weird science
10/16/03: TV golf needs a kick in the pants
10/08/03: That's geek to me
09/30/03: A man, a woman and a cat
09/22/03: A tale of two spams
09/16/03: Librarian action figure will be taking no guff
09/10/03: Slackers need to remain invisible
09/02/03: No fun in the summertime
08/26/03: The algebra of love
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08/06/03: Word dominance by U.S. appears a fait accompli
07/28/03: Ads that are hard to swallow
07/09/03: Keep cows out of the classroom
07/03/03: Little-appreciated facts about unshaven men
06/24/03: Brother, can you paradigm?
06/18/03: Cats, TV not a good mix
06/10/03: In defense of grumpiness
06/04/03: Do we really need keyboards in our Port-A-Johns?
05/29/03: Always a dull men's moment
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05/12/03:Army mops up; Tony Blair doesn't
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04/23/03: Too much money? Tax me more!
04/14/03: When good gourds go bad
04/11/03: One fish-tale that isn't --- and that's no lie!
04/02/03: Do you really want to know what your dog's thinking?
03/26/03: Pajamas make high school less stressful
03/21/03: It's time to be nice to the French
03/03/03: The ultimate clean and constructive sport
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01/28/03: Signs our economy is on upswing
01/22/03: There may be cash in your old underwear
01/15/03: Banish these words, now more than ever
01/07/03: Coughing as an art form
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12/17/02: French government says no to @ symbol
12/11/02: A latecomer joins fellowship of the DVD
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11/18/02: Intrigued by a German invention that could get teens out of bed before the crack of noon
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10/29/02: Iranian dogs on notice
10/22/02: Talk about a job that stinks --- literally!
10/15/02: The official world's funniest joke
10/02/02: Japanese turn eyes to computer haikus
09/27/02: Oh, no! Bosses want to know what's on your mind
09/24/02: An airbag, humanity's salvation?
09/06/02: Come listen to a story about a man named ... Bill
09/03/02: You're not in preschool anymore!
08/30/02: A charming idea from a brutal, whacked-out, megalomaniacal dictator-for-life
08/26/02: Blubber water? How to put on the pounds by gulping H20
08/21/02: The latest evidence that Mother Nature is out to kill us
08/13/02: Computers, airplanes and Canada don't mix
08/06/02: The sky's not falling? Dang it!
08/02/02: Some fond memories of worst TV shows
07/30/02: Pay my credit-card bill, please?
07/25/02: Something to celebrate
07/22/02: Baseball needs to ban the fans
07/16/02: Hasbro should consider new inaction figure
07/11/02: Decline in trash-talking is harming our mental health? Well, #@%&!
07/08/02 Americans retain right to fork tongues
07/01/02 These laws were made to be broken
06/18/02 Watching enough commercials?
06/03/02 Throwing your vote to the dogs
05/08/02 Hey, Mom, could you spare a dime?: Parents' obligations unending

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