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Recession makes cave-dwellers sell on eBay

Curt Sleeper and his family live in a Missouri cave. His mortgage has come due and he's trying to refinance. Because of the recession, they've put the cave on eBay.

Curt Sleeper is a man ahead of the curve. The curve that begins the downward spiral.

Understanding that humanity is regressing to its cave-dweller roots, he and his wife Deborah bought their own cave in Festus, Mo., back when most people were tossing their home equity down a cavernous hole.

The Sleepers even sold their DVD collection to buy the 17,000 square foot cave. I don't even want to think what their heating bills must be. However, I know they are now experiencing a deep chill.

The cave cost $160,000, of which the Sleepers put down half. The other half they borrowed from the people who sold them the cave. (No, they were not called the Crusoes or the Robinsons from Switzerland.) It was a five-year loan with one so-called balloon payment at the end, which would be this May.

This, apparently, is a bedroom. Curt Sleeper

Sadly, with the banks in a self-induced coma of convenience, the Sleepers are unable to refinance. Mr. Sleeper, a computer consultant, told ABC News: "Right now, banks are not interested in anything odd." There is, indeed, nothing odd about taking taxpayers' money to cover for decisions made in large echoing heads.

So Mr. Sleeper has gone Web 2.0 to achieve his required zeros. He has requested bids on eBay.

He and his family have spent five years turning the cave, which was once an ice rink and also a concert venue (Yes, Bob Seger played there. Ted Nugent's hair performed there, too.), into something Ali Baba and his 40 thieves would have loved.

"The goal is not notoriety," he said. "The goal is either to finance or sell my house."

10,000 people have already shown some interest in cave-dwelling. 70 have declared their pre-registered interest in bidding.

The delight of it all is that the Sleepers actually found their cavernous dream on eBay too. So I am sure there must be someone who appreciates that cave-dwelling is the future. Just think of the number of hairy roommates you could fit into 17,000 square feet.