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6:13 p.m. - Thursday, Feb. 01, 2007
When I was in college the first time, I tried to become an alcoholic. Couldn't do it. When I was in my twenties, I tried to get addicted to cigarettes. Couldn't do it.

This thing I've got going with eBay is the closest I've ever been to addiction.

I keep checking the antique diaries. I keep bidding even though, really, I have no justification for buying these things. I'm not an antique dealer and I'm not rich enough to be a collector.

I've never before understood the lure of gambling. Now I'm finding myself bidding on diaries in the hope that I'll be outbid so I don't actually have to pay for it. Sometimes when I do get outbid, my first reaction is, "Oh, yeah? I'll show you, you bastard!" and then I bid higher for something I don't really want. %Then sometimes I realize I'm bidding against someone who's put in a very high maximum bid, and I'll try to get as close to his limit as I dare without surpassing it. Because I don't want to pay $100 for that diary, but if this bastard going to buy it out from under me, I want to make him pay as much as possible — so I'll submit a bid, and as soon as I've clicked on the "Submit" button, I'm watching the screen desperately hoping the "You have been outbid" message will pop up, meaning that my gamble has paid off.

That's sick. I almost feel normal for finally being able to be addicted to something.

Anyway, now I've bid $150 max on a diary that's up for sale. This one I'm serious about, because of the time and place in which it was written.

At the same time, I have no rational basis for being serious about it. Yes, it touches on my family history, but so what? Who cares? I do, and when I die, who then? Nobody. My niece doesn't care; she doesn't have any emotional connection to the relative I knew in my childhood, anymore than I have much of an emotional connection to my relatives who died before I was born — except for that mysterious aunt who, everyone told me when I was a kid, looked and talked and moved just like me.

So, anyway ... where the hell was I? ... Oh, yes, I was congratulating myself because I've finally found a way to lose money to an irrational, compulsive behavior. Just like a normal person!


Dog#2 and I went for a walk in Surprise Park in the afternoon, and without too much difficulty I found the mysterious farming implement that had been abandoned deep in the woods. Or rather, abandoned in a field that subsequently, over the years, turned into the woods.

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You can see how the wheel on the right was crushed by a falling tree.

It looks somewhat like an old cultivator.


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