March 18, 2009
Reselling a couple of $60,000 classroom trailers should bring in a nice chunk of change, right? So thought district officials in East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania. Enter anonymous district bureaucrat, charged with selling the costly portable learning spaces on eBay. Confident he (or she) could make such a transaction with no assistance from eBay's own help pages, his own colleagues, or perhaps even his own brain, this smarty pants drew up an advertisement minus one key bit of information: a minimum bid. Enter anonymous eBay browser, who happens to think one of these metal boxes would be a nice accoutrement to his lawn-strewn pink flamingos (and cost the same, too), and enters a bid of $1--and wins. Too bad for East Stroudsburg, eBay sales are final and subject to legally binding contract law, which means the district just sold a $60,000 trailer for the price of a quarter pounder off the dollar menu (or at least before it became the dollar or a little bit more menu). One can only assume the next asset being liquidated in Eastern PA is the job of the (ir)responsible bloke.
"Online boo-boo costs eastern Pa. school district thousands in sale of used classroom trailer," Associated Press, March 5, 2009