The Craigslist Find That Got Away

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A friend just sent this email and said I could share the story, since so many of us in the Apartment Therapy community are fans of Craigslist. She wrote, I happen to be slightly addicted to craigslist - I'm always looking for furniture for our new (mostly empty) home. Last night I found a post that was posted either by a scam artist getting their kicks by getting mid-century nerds like me all excited or by a legitimate seller who was too ignorant to know what they had. Here was the ad:

Vintage easy chair, comfortable - $175 (GTA)

I have for sale an upholstered easy chair with wooden legs and wood accent on the end of the arms. I don't know the wood, but my wife thinks that it is teak. It is such an unusual chair, it is hard to explain.It has stamped information which says it is made in Denmark and was designed by Hank Wegner. I will borrow a camera and have pictures ready for tomorrow.

I hope to get $175 for the chair. I am very sorry but I am not able to deliver.

I thought it was strange that the guy was savvy enough to look for a stamp but then couldn't be bothered to type "wegner chair" into google and discover what he had on his hands. I didn't know what kind of chair he was talking about but looked it up and decided it was probably the papa bear chair - reportedly worth around $5000.

I didn't know how to proceed. Should I reply immediately, without seeing any pictures (or even knowing the color), and say that I was coming to get it for the price asked and risk the seller cueing onto the fact that they may have something really valuable on their hands? Do I wait until the pictures are up and then respond? Either way, other craigslist hawks like myself might've already tipped the guy off. Also, if it was legitimate and I did get the chair, wouldn't I feel horrible about making a massive profit off of the sellers' ignorance?

Anyways, I did write an email - trying not to sound too excited - and fell asleep last night dreaming about what other furniture I would buy with the thousands of dollars profit I would make (it's too rich for my blood!!). I checked my email this morning and then craigslist and discovered that it probably had been a legitimate post but that I didn't "win" the chair. Someone else beat me to it. Aggghh!!!

In the world of online finds, I guess it is easy come, easy go...anyone else have a similar story of "the hunt" to share?

(Thanks, Abby!)

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