Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Adventures in Craigslisting, Part 1: Difficult Questions

In a vain attempt to sell my car, I put an ad up on Craigslist. Within minutes I got replies. I was a bit confused, though, when several of the replies were simply phone numbers. A couple were literally just the numbers, but a few tried to spruce up their messages with actual words:

Please call me at [redacted]
I want to try and buy your car u can call me at [redacted] or [redacted]
i'm interested in your car could you give me a call @ [redacted]

These were honest inquiries, mind you. They were emailed to me, not texted, so I can assume that the writers had access to a full, standard QWERTY keyboard. I can also assume, with some reservation, that these messages were not written by elementary school children. These messages came from people of legal driving age (and most likely, old enough to vote), and they could not even form enough of a coherent thought, let alone express that thought with proper English, to ask any relevant question about the car itself or how they could go about obtaining said car.

I decide to give these people the benefit of the doubt, though. I hoped that perhaps they were busy and hurriedly firing off emails, and, despite having utilized the internet to find and contact me regarding my item for sale, they chose to disregard this medium of communication because their questions were so detailed and intricate that they were incapable of being translated into the written word.

This was false hope.

When I called some of these people, the most detailed questions I received from any of them were one, if not all three, of the following:

What color is it?
How many doors does it have?
What was wrong with it?
These seem like reasonable questions when you don't take into account that there were four color pictures -- one, a full-length side-view depicting two doors (so one could assume that there is an equal amount on the other side) -- at the bottom of the Craigslist ad that explained, in detail, that there is a major leak in the coolant system. In short, they only wanted to ask me questions to which adequate answers were already available.

As it turned out, not one of them was interested in buying my car. Just wasting my time and cell phone minutes.

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