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  1. You were right on the money Too bad it's my money, but I'm now confident I'll get it back.
  2. Seeing as the Swiss are getting involved as well, it's maybe prudent to write a follow-up. So I contacted Paypal at 9 AM this morning, less than 5 minutes on hold and the nice gentleman on the phone insisted that A) The payments didn't go through B) My bank was wrong. Took me a while to convince him that my bank was not lying to me and I got kicked up to his supervisor. He also told me that my bank "might" be wrong and what they were seeing was probably "payment pending" (it was not) and that the fault was with my bank as they had declined the payment from my credit card. I managed to keep a cool head, mainly due to my training of playing " Rock Paper Scissors Lizard Spock " and told him his logic was wrong as not only was my Visa card denied from bank A, but also my Mastercard from bank B. And the odds of both happening at the same time would clear out a Vegas casino in minutes. Confronted with the logic he took the only action he was trained for...and put me on hold. A few minutes later I spoke to a third person who told me that Paypal had been having issues with all credit card companies for the past day or so and they were taking steps with the various CCCs to "put things right" and he advised me not to use Paypal with a credit card until things got sorted someone actually admitted it was their fault. Of course he couldn't tell me when the issue would be fixed but told me that yes, my money had been processed from my Visa account but it would never be accepted by Paypal and it would be automatically reimbursed to me. So right after this (yes I skipped work this morning) I called my bank again. Had to tell the whole story from top to bottom again and was told again that they could see that both Visa payments went through (so not "pending") on their side and told me to download a form to contest the payments and send it back to them as "Paypal isn't to be trusted". He then tried to get rid of me, but I felt like ditching work some more so I asked him why he was seeing the payments on his side but I couldn't see them when I logged into my Visa (bank) account...oh boy this was a whole new ball of wax. He asked me if I was sure I couldn't see the transactions and then..put me on hold. When he came back he told me that if they could see the transactions and I couldn't that it meant that the transactions either hadn't reached Paypal or would never reach Paypal, or were not "accepted by Paypal" and if this was still the case on Friday my card wouldn't be charged and the phantom charges would magically disappear from their end as well. So I asked him if it wouldn't be a better idea to wait it out for 5 days before I used the nuclear option ? It took him a while but in the end he agreed that if the charges do not show up on my online account before next Monday, all would be well and there would be no need to start contesting the charges. So there you have it, I've switched from playing "Rock Paper Scissors Lizard Spock" to Patience and hopefully all will turn out well without a single bit of human interaction.
  3. Yeah that’s the plan. Give PP the chance to put it right, if not then I’m calling my bank again, ask them to send me the form to submit to Visa and then let Visa get me my money back which I know they will. I don’t need the bank drafts reimbursed as they show up in my PP account and reached their destination. Only thing that bothers me is that PayPal could close my account once I sick Visa on them. Still very strange that these two payments just disappeared into thin air and I am now weary to pay anything through PP, last two times I got a warning my cc was no good and the purchase couldn’t be completed but the money was taken from my card anyway without me knowing it.
  4. Ok this is a strange one, even for Paypal, after dealing with them for ever... I'm now totally clueless. Maybe some enlightened soul here has had the same misfortune and can give me some advice or at least a comforting pat on the shoulder. I'm afraid due to a technical error I made two payments twice. I tried to pay $345 to a boardie using my Visa card. I got an error message from Paypal that I couldn't pay using this card and had to try another source of payment. So I tried with my Mastercard (both cards have been on file for years and all info is up to date) and that one was denied as well. I was forced to make the payment using my bank account...and that went through without a hitch. Ten minutes later I needed to pay a cell phone bill and again went through paypal and tried my Visa card again, this time for €15. Again the card wouldn't take and again I paid using my bank account. Payment now went through. I got a mail from paypal telling me "Your card issuer declined your 15,00 EUR; please contact your card issuer). I did not get this email for my payment of $345 a few minutes earlier. So I phone my bank and they tell me that both payments from my Visa card have gone through to Paypal...and then a second time from my bank account. They also tell me they can't put a stop on the Visa payments. When I go to my paypal account there is no trace at all of the payments I made using the Visa card, only the ones I did using my bank account. But my bank tells me that the Visa payments indeed were paid and will be deducted from my account...and that there is nothing wrong with my card. I also used two different machines for the two payments, so it can't be a browser/cookie/computer issue on my end. So this puzzles me.. 1) Why was I unable to pay using two seperate credit cards (Visa and Mastercard) when both are fine according to the bank. 2) How come the payments with the Visa card did go through, paypal told me they were unable to process the card and there is no trace of them to be found in my paypal account. 3) Why did I get a "card declined" email for one of the payments and not for the other, even though both went through. I checked with the parties I paid and both only got paid once, even though according to my bank I paid twice. And of course How do I get my $345 and my €15 back, as they don't appear on my paypal account as being paid, but my bank assures me that the payments using the Visa card have gone through. Oh and Paypal helpdesk here stops at 5 PM...and I made the transactions after that. If nobody here has a clue, I'll hopefully be able to contact them tomorrow, even though they are only open during the hours that I'm at work.
  5. I've had it happen to me, alas more than once. And most recently on a 20K+ book. I bought it slabbed, blue label over 10 years ago, cracked it and resubbed it this year. Got it back as C-1 restored : " tear seal to cover" WTH ? So either they missed it the first time over a decade ago, or by sheer magic a tear seal grew and nurtured in the slab. I was more shocked than unhappy...but contacted CCS for restoration removal and they had me send the slab back to them and told me it was possible. Ended up paying around $700 to get it graded, then $500 for the removal of the magical tear seal and then another $700 to get it graded again. Was lucky and happy to get it back in a blue label and without the grade having dropped...but it did cost me $1900 (plus shipping X4) , $1200 of which shouldn't really have happened.
  6. I read a lot of good points and counter arguments, here is my take. I’m a member of a few Facebook groups consisting of local, Belgian, Dutch, French and other European collectors. Most groups have a few 100 members, and they tend to infect and educate each other, a few weeks ago someone posted a couple of 70s Intantino Flash books and now half a dozen of the members are buying and showing off these books. This happens with a lot of titles, as long as they are cheap enough. Most are between 20 and 40 years old With the average being around 30. A lot of them have come into the hobby due to the Marvel cinematic universe and most of them but not all get their fix from TPBs and HCs but about a quarter of them buy cheap 60s 70s and 80s comics. Almost none of them have pull lists or buy monthly new comics. Most have no major keys, I think the most expensive book I’ve ever seen posted was a plod cgc Hulk 181 4.0 and everybody went gaga over it. So these people are true readers and collectors, the most positive thing is even if they are not spending a lot of money right now, most of them have a plan to someday own one or more of the super keys (AF15 IH181 Xmen1, TOS39, JIM83...) when they own their own house, when the kids are grown up, when they’ll have more disposable income or a better paying job. For most it will take 20 years, but I do believe most of them will try and obtain them, even if they lose interest ( and their current collection) along the way.
  7. Dude, look at what Storm is wearing...or should I say, not wearing.
  8. Prime Byrne has been very hot for a while now, a few weeks ago I sold this page for a little more than any of those three pages went for, of course, I sold to another collector so I didn't need to add any fees and he paid about what it would have cost for the most expensive of the three without all the juice. Both of us were very happy...and I think Byrne still has a lot of growth. And judging from the X-men #129 page that sold for $33,600.00 (and which I don't really care for)...a LOT more growth than I could have imagined, I thought that was a $20K piece. So I'm very happy the buyer passed on another Byrne page that I had priced too low, and would be kicking myself had I sold this gem, not only because I would have been way below market but also because I really like it
  9. For the life of me I can't remember where I signed it (yes I know above the beak of the cello-bird, but where physically), it didn't travel halfway around the world did it ?
  10. Jebus 10 years...:( In 2009 Nik invited me to his place in Boston, he still had a European soul and we had always gotten along well on the boards, so in July 2009 I finally flew to the US, had a BBQ with his wife and kids and a bunch of boardies that were from the area but also Doc Watson and Arex that drove for 8 hours to get there. The next day we all spent geeking out over books in Nik's basement, where he had something that looked like a stripper pole installed, I still don't know what it was and I seem to remember someone walking into it, which had Nik laughing so hard I remember he drove like a madman when he took us all down-town for Oysters, scared the bejeebus out of me, I only have this very badly lit pic of that restaurant...all boardies, I'm not naming names, you all know who you are. So many great things happened that weekend, I met boardies I had known for years (online) for the first time and most of them became very good friends. I'll always remember Nik with a smile and remember a lot of his stories, he would get so animated while telling them and then after he got it all out he was the sweetest guy you could imagine. I got back to Belgium around the 20th and received a PM that Nik had been hospitalised a day or so after I came back...and alas he passed away a few days later. Rest in peace buddy, You were quite the character, the world is a poorer place without you.
  11. No customs fees, as like you said the art stays in the EU, but we pay 21% tax on everything bar the essentials, except electricity which is also 21%. Water is still 6%
  12. Lies ! Blatant Lies ! I work 20 hours a week (average is 41, but I'm a fast worker) and get 15 weeks of vacation, retirement age has been raised from 58 to 67 though and medical house-calls have gone up to €8 ! rains a lot over here.