Updated 10am ET to reflect that Contractor is going after the seller

Gizmodo today runs a post by the guy who tried to sell one of Apple’s 5th Avenue Store Stairs on eBay. The eBay posting was taken down one day into bidding without a word about the circumstances.  Until now.

A year and a half ago, I was an Apple employee at the Fifth Ave flagship store. In that time, there was a silly, unfortunate accident. A woman came down the magnificent spiral staircase, and dropped a Snapple bottle…After bouncing once or twice, the bottle severely cracked one of the steps. Since these steps are so well engineered, the structural integrity of the step wasn’t compromised, but it was certainly a cosmetic problem. Later that month, four or five very big men came to replace the step with a new one. After they were finished, and the steps that were replaced were out on the curb, I left the store. Off the clock and in civilian clothes, I asked the contractors who were there on behalf of Seele, the manufacturer, if I could have a step. “It could be a collectible some day,” I said. They, of course, saw no problem with it, and even collectively helped me lift it into a vehicle. That is the story of how I came to be in possession of a step from the spiral staircase at Apple Fifth Ave.

First of all, a $10,000 stair that can be destroyed (as in needs to be replaced) by a Snapple bottle dropped from waist height may need some re-thinking.  That might be why Apple and the contractor would like this stair to be swept from existence.

Apple, who is obviously putting pressure on the contractor to get the stair (which is patented) back, could have just bought the thing at the “Buy-it-now” price of $2500.  The contractor also could have made the purchase and cut their losses.

Now, they’ve gathered more publicity and therefore bidders to the new auction, which by the way is at $6300 as we speak, much more than double the “Buy-it-now” price of the original auction.  

If Apple wants it back now, they are going to have to pony up

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