Ode to Buddies
By R. Jeffrey Hankins
Vicki is the name of my ebay friend.
We met in the heat of a bid.
If not for my message the story would end,
But my name was the same as her kid.
Aggressive and persistent she did prevail,
On a Chevron truck auction that day.
So a message to her I did send by email:
"Congrat's and what fun on ebay".
With apologies for winning she did reply,
And I countered for her not to worry.
For my collection of trucks was great in supply,
And to complete it there is not a hurry.
For awhile we spent sharing our joys of selling,
And buying, and collecting all that (our c---).
We both had our stories and both enjoyed telling
News 'bout Chevron and bubble wrap.
Then one day off the top of her head
Came a question of personal measure.
And so I responded that we stick instead
To discussions 'bout ebay for pleasure.
But that put her off and into a huff,
And I couldn't communicate with her.
My admission of guilt wasn't even enough
To bring back my friend Vicki Fisher.
Upon us then was the holiday season,
And the New Year preoccupied us all.
I made lots of buys but for some reason
I missed someone I met that Fall.
Those winter weeks went on and on,
It seemed forever and a day.
The fun was over and the spark was gone
Between two pals hooked on ebay.
Then it came to my delight,
An email, just out of the blue.
My pal Vicki, a little contrite,
But she had been lonely too.
We proceeded to share our news once again,
Our stories of buyer and seller.
But personal questions I resolved not to refrain
From answering - I would just tell her.
She wanted a truck for Jeffrey 2's boy.
Then, our emails were not very heavy.
But a Chevron truck isn't considered a toy,
So I sent her a reissued Chevy.
In the dog house again I was gratefully not.
So we went on with our lightened emails.
But then did I bid and alas I had bought
Her "Ships and Narrow Gauge Rails".
A very good price it was so indeed
A nice book to give to my dad
But Vicki did think that she was in need
Of a way to offset it a tad.
The cost without postage she then provided
And promptly I paid her the price
But business is business and so I decided
To send one more check to be nice.
To Vicki that action just wasn't right,
For she wished to reciprocate
The gesture that I had made one night,
While working at home so darn late.
Back in the dog house there I was,
But that would soon be stopping.
Redeemed I had a chance because
Her photos needed cropping.
'Twas a pic she had, it needed mending -
Just a slight correction.
How grateful she was, for me sending
Her train in the right direction.
Yes, Vicki needed some help with shrinking
Her photos to keep her files small.
So within just a minute and without even thinking
I had shrunk not just one but them all.
And then unto me a new job on my platter,
Shrinking and cropping her pics.
Day in and day out it didn't matter,
I liked helping and teaching her tricks.
Then low and behold one fine early morning
A package from Vicki was found.
A private surprise though not without warning,
But my colleague kept hanging around.
Trucks or toys it did not yield,
I was glad to find the news -
A special treat from Bakersfield -
A sack of Dewar's Chews.
Still Vicki yearned to learn the ropes,
Frustration soon set in.
I wrote a 'script all in the hopes
Comprehension could begin.
Shrinking pics and making wine,
Unrelated you might think.
You wouldn't believe that story of mine
Just tickled her ever so pink.
Of trucks and trains and books and bidding,
We wrote and played a fun game.
Of jams and jellies, cameras and kidding -
She tried to guess my first name.
Of CIA agents and postage scales,
We talked of many things -
Of guessing URL details
For my ranch in Dripping Springs.
Ranch and jam? Quite a spread!
For awhile we chewed the fat.
Then a thought came to her head,
"How did he get into that?"
"My tomato jam is second to none"
A statement she proudly did share.
"Maybe I'll give you a recipe that won
First place at the Kern County Fair."
"Vicki's the name, bribery's my game.
The recipe I will confess.
I'll give you the jam, but please, in God's Name
Give me that web site address!"
While shrinking more pics another book I did find
A Charles Russell it was this time.
But she'd stop the auction - she didn't mind,
It would not even cost me a dime.
No, I couldn't do that so the minimum I paid,
And I added some postage in too.
But that was too much for guess what she said:
"There's a surprise in the package for you!"
More chews, maybe seeds, what might it be?
Until Thursday I'd just have to wait.
No, I couldn't stand it, Hmmm, let me see,
On Wednesday, I would stay late.
Sneaking into a desk I did find the key
To that mailbox sized 18 by 9.
Oh what did that Vicki bestow unto me?
A book 'bout California Wine.
Under pressure she yielded, couldn't take anymore.
That recipe finally would come.
Oh no, I was tricked, with the recipe for
Vicki's old time Hot Buttered Rum!
Well, finally with hints, she discovered my site.
Relieved were we both I might say.
For I needed a jam, it just would be right
To introduce at our town Founder's Day.
Then of Armanis we did have a chat
And of photos that looked so much better.
An ebay buddy - simple as that.
I was so lucky to have met her.
Oh the jam was a hit. It was the best.
On my anniversary it was a thrill.
That pretty red jar stood out from the rest
On that special sixteenth day in April.
Now it was my turn to give her a treat,
And for Vicki it would be free - Oh,
And it was my turn to give something sweet,
So I sent her our new Tex-Zen Trio™.
Vicki's not timid, she's got her views,
And so happy to do her good deeds.
Then there it was, another box full of chews,
And for Loretta a bag full of seeds.
I shake my head. I can't compete
With this woman oh so kind,
For if I do the slightest feat,
A gift from her I'll find.
I've told my secrets too, and how
Her pics deserve much praising.
My shrinking jobs are over now.
Her pics are just amazing.
Surprised again, what am I to do?
For she asked if I had seen
The gift of a subscription to
The E-bay Magazine.
Thanks for everything it was signed,
And Given With Best Wishes.
More bribery must be on her mind,
But I couldn't use her dishes!
Her scale was what I really needed.
She offered "such a deal".
"Bid high to win" was what she pleaded,
But I ignored her wise appeal.
The scale was lost that night so late.
A sniper did me in.
But Vicki did not hesitate
To offer yet again.
"I'll just order one direct"
A favor she would do.
Soon she said I could expect
A scale brand-spanking new.
My chews were running low, you see,
And subscriptions needed paying.
But Vicki had a job for me
To help with her Ebaying
See Vicki tried to add some text
To annotate her pics.
But couldn’t figure what came next -
She didn’t know the tricks.
Her off-brand program wasn’t good -
The text it wouldn’t set.
But that’s my call, for now I could
Help pay my rising debt.
We’re buddies long it seems.
Friends we’ll always be.
For photo help from Jhdreams
And gifts from Mamavee.
No, this verse is not the last,
Surely there's something left out.
Please think hard into the past,
And you'll add a rhyme, no doubt!
By Vicki Fisher
Jeff thought Vicki was mad at him,
And Vicki asked Jeff not to mention that again.
But Jeff, without thinking, brought it up one more time
That is the reason for this addendum to his epic rhyme.
The e-mails began just for fun,
Congratulations from Jeff for an auction won.
A single fire truck was Vicki's desire,
But Jeff was accumulating his Chevron Empire.
Vicki offered to sell part of her win,
Jeff said, "no thanks", I already have 210.
They shared a few laughs and talked about eBay,
Nothing personal - just a note every few days.
Questions about Chevron were an excuse to write,
Jeff always answered and was always polite.
The e-mails were impersonal and on an even keel,
Talks about eBay and Lledo trucks made of steel.
Then Vicki began wondering about Jeff's Texas life,
What was his profession, did he have kids and a wife?
One morning while reflecting on the death of a child,
Vicki sent Jeff an e-mail that was anything but mild.
An impending trip had Vicki filled with dread,
She wrote down her thoughts - didn't care what she said.
The letter, though well written, became a scary e-mail
Jeff would be shocked and would say, "What the h---?"
With a touch of a finger the message was sent,
No time for retraction as the e-mail on its way went.
Embarrassed and ashamed of the message Jeff would receive,
Vicki knew the words could not be retrieved.
Frustrated, uncomfortable, wondering if she was nuts,
Vicki stopped writing because she had spilled her guts.
Too proud to write and simply say,
"I'm sorry Jeff, I knew our relationship was strictly eBay"
So Vicki stopped writing shortly after that
But she knew she would miss their eBay chats.
How could Vicki apologize with her pride in the way?
But she missed her eBay buddy and so one-day...
Vicki noticed on that Jeff was still buying,
So she sent him a note,
Nothing personal or prying.
He sent a reply and that's where we'll end,
This story of a librarian and her engineer friend.
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