100% Positive Feedback

One day, a forklift truck driver called Martin Cameron found a perfectly round egg in a box of eggs he bought in a supermarket. The other eggs were normal, egg shaped eggs. He decided not to eat the perfectly round egg, which meant that the omelette he made for himself, his wife and his daughter that evening was a five egg omelette rather than a six egg omelette. This omelette, served with chips and beans - though lately his daughter had demanded salad or peas - was a Cameron family tradition. Martin's shift pattern meant that he was either home early on Mondays, or not working until late in the evening. And so, he would do the shopping for the week, and make omelette and chips for the evening meal.

While they ate the slightly smaller than normal omelette, Martin told them about the egg. He said he had found a perfectly round egg and that he was going to sell it on ebay. He went to the cupboard in the kitchen where he had placed the egg (they normally kept their eggs in the fridge), wrapped in toilet paper, in the box of a spare lightbulb, with ROUND EGG written on the box. Here, he said, showing them the egg. His daughter said that she felt sick and couldn't eat her omelette and her mother said don't be so silly Charlotte and then she said who is going to buy an egg on the internet Martin? Martin was surprised that his family weren't as excited about his plan as he was.

Martin got in touch with the local newspaper and they ran a story about him on page seven. The headline read “Hatching my plan to make cash from egg” which Martin didn't think was very good. A national newspaper picked up on the story and ran it with the headline “What a cracking find!” Martin thought that was better. When he showed the story to his colleagues they all laughed and one of them said oi Martin your head is as round as that egg and they all laughed but Martin didn't think it was that funny.

Martin put the egg up on ebay. He called it Round Chicken Egg 100% Real. It was listed under Collectables > Weird Stuff > Unusual. Other things listed in that section were Russian dolls that looked like ninjas, a bell with SEX written on it listed as Sex Bell Perfect Novelty Gift, and a set of pens that looked like syringes which made Martin feel sick but he didn't know why.

He received a lot of ebay messages, more than he had ever received than for any other item he had ever sold on ebay. Most of them were well meaning but silly questions – about postage and packaging or authenticity and Martin just pointed them politely back to the listing where the information could be found. He was frustrated that people didn't believe that his egg was round. I haven't even got Photoshop! he thought when people asked him if it had been photoshopped. But he was careful not to sound angry in the replies he sent. He didn't want to jeopardise his 100% positive feedback rating. He also received some very strange messages. He thought it was probably because the national newspaper had provided a link to the listing on their website. He had several death threats, which he reported to ebay's moderators. He also had a few overtly sexual messages which he didn't report to ebay's moderators, but instead read them again and again and printed them out and took them to the toilets at work and masturbated whilst holding the print outs in his hand.

The egg received no bids on the first day, but because of the newspaper coverage, by the second day the bidding shot up to £155. He was on the computer in the dining room and shouted to his wife. She came in and said what's going on Martin? and he showed her the screen and she laughed and said god people are so strange aren't they? His daughter was less impressed and said that it was embarrassing and that everyone at school was taking the piss out of her and Martin said oi don't swear and she rolled her eyes and went back to her room.

By the third day the bidding was up to £350. Martin couldn't believe it and when he showed it to his work mates on his phone, even the one who had said that Martin had a round head nodded and said fucking hell mate good work. Martin said he would buy them all a pint when he got the money and one of them said a pint? Tight bastard, make it two! Martin laughed and said you'll be lucky mate.

After the third day bidding slowed down and Martin was certain that it was the newspaper coverage that had helped him out.

That night in bed Martin was telling his wife about the egg and she said Martin all you ever talk about is that bloody egg I wish you'd never found it and then turned over. Martin said well then I guess I won't be taking us away for a weekend with the money then and she tried to stay angry but then he tickled her and she laughed and then they had sex but not for long as they were both very tired. Though later, he woke up with an erection and, half asleep, masturbated while thinking about putting the egg inside his wife's mouth and making her hold it there whilst he took photos on his phone and when he came, the image in his head was of him sending these photos to the person who made the highest bid and him not caring that he would receive negative feedback.

The highest bid didn't change until right at the end of the auction, a few minutes before it closed, it was pushed up to £391 by two bidders trying to get the egg. Martin watched it happen on his computer and when the bidding finished he shouted yes! and went into the living room and picked his wife up from her chair and carried her around and sang a made up song to her about the perfectly round egg. She laughed and said put me down Martin you idiot! His daughter came downstairs and said oh my god what are you doing? and Martin put his wife down and took his daughter's hands and made her dance around the room whilst he sang the egg song. She said oh my god but then laughed and said dad you are such a freak.

He received the money, and sent the egg packaged as carefully as he could by special delivery. He was worried that the egg would break and he bought official looking stickers that said FRAGILE in red letters and stuck them all over the padded envelope that held the egg.

The next day at work he was worried that the egg had broken and kept checking his phone, waiting for the positive feedback that would confirm that the egg had reached the buyer safe and sound. When he finally got the message that evening, he was relieved but also sad. He drank three cans of beer from the garage, which he normally only did if there was a football match on tv. He looked at his other listings on ebay, for a guitar tuner, a guitar cable and a usb hub, but they were just about reaching their reserve price and it made him feel bored and boring to be looking at them. He went into the living room where he had danced around with his wife only a few days before. The couch looked pathetic and worn out. Maybe we should get a new couch he said and his wife said what? He walked out of the living room, went upstairs and knocked on his daughter's door. She opened it a small amount and said what? and he said what are you doing and she said homework obviously and he said maybe I'll buy you a new computer and she said really? With the egg money? And he said yeah and she smiled and said dad that's amazing that would be really amazing. And he smiled and they hugged and he said you find one and tell me where to get it and I'll pick it up on Monday ok?

He went back downstairs and into the living room and said I've said I'll buy Charlotte a new computer with the egg money and his wife said oh that's nice Martin we can go on holiday any time can't we? and he said yeah, we'll go away in the new year maybe and then he went back to his computer and checked on his ebay listings but no one had made any more bids.