Postmodern fun zone
! Allmylifeforsale.com featured University of Iowa
graduate student and pack rat
John Freyer selling everything he owned, including his own birthday party
, on eBay
. He remarked to the Washington Post
, "Why is it I have an entire apartment filled with stuff? Maybe I don't need all of this. If my house burned down
, I would still exist." Each of his auctions on eBay included information about the memories
behind his possessions.
The University of Iowa's Museum of Art bought his two false front teeth and decided to build a whole exhibit about him; the museum director explained that "John is doing what great art does, which is explore the world around us and help us think differently about it."
Some eBay fan in New York bought his birthday party and made lots of new friends.
His stepmother engaged in bidding battles for the family's Christmas presents.
Ironically, several of the buyers rhapsodized about trends in material renunciation and letting go of possessions, while being interviewed for buying another person's cast-off pinking shears and ashtrays.
The experience of the auction, as well as of visiting all the buyers around the world, will be part of John Freyer's dissertation, written up at www.temporama.com.