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Pre-eBay, I played solitaire at work while on the phone with boring people. Now I cruise the auctions. And I’ve discovered costume jewelry. OK, maybe for the long term I’d rather own a “Rare Platinum Diamond Bangle Bracelet NICE” (appraised at $8,568.30, reserve not yet met), but I can almost afford a “1920-30 Odium faux DIAMOND/

EMERALD Bracelet” (currently $50, six days to go) or a “c.1930 Art Deco Paste Bracelet NoReserve” (currently $1, eight days to go). And if I ever got up the courage to actually buy something, I’d be able to wear it proudly to Jina Ames’ presentation on vintage costume jewelry—where she could tell me all about art-deco silver, the rhinestones of the Ziegfeld Follies, and present-day department-store stuff, as well as whether “OI YOU, YES YOU! LOOK AT THIS CHARM BRACELET!” is indeed a bargain (currently $26.01, five days to go). The past president of the Northern Virginia Antique and Art Association will speak at 1 p.m. at Green Spring Gardens Park’s Manor House, 4603 Green Spring Road, Alexandria. $18. For reservations call (703) 941-7987. (Caroline Schweiter)