I think it's also useful to remember that getting an agent is not the final goal. It's just a step on the way to the final goal (being well-published and, presumably, building a writing career or sideline). Just getting an agent does you no good if that agent isn't going to be a good partner for you, and starting a partnership with deception and manipulation probably isn't a great way to go. Also... if an agent doesn't think she can sell your work, she's not going to agree to represent you regardless of whether some other agent may (or may not) have shown interest. It really does come down to writing something people think will sell.