Notice that two of the three retracting bidders (27.5K and 40K, I believe) have a history of retracting bids. One has retracted 9 bids and the other 25 bids in the last 6 months. To me, this indicates, not collusion, but people "playing". How many of those other bids (not retracted) at lower money were people doing the same thing, knowing the price would rise above the amount they bid. I have been on ebay since 1997 and have never retracted a bid. I have put an entry level bid in on an item that I knew I wasn't going to win in order to see who won it once ebay started changing years ago. Other than that, this is not a game, it is commerce. I agree about airing the drama-it may have made a serious bidder skittish.
Collecting the Mississippi companies:
Billups, Southland, Rose Oil,Crystal Oil, Barq's