Tuesday, January 16, 2007

The Auction....

While we were in Tennessee I wasn't feeling very well so we really didn't go out and do much. On Saturday evening my parents mentioned going to the auction that they like to go to. I thought it sounded cool and I've always wanted to go to one. My dad advised that we not take the kids so my mom offered to spend the evening with them. Jake, My Dad and I headed off to the Auction. It was set to start at 7 P.M. I knew where the auction was but I guess I hadn't really ever paid much attention to the building. We get there and it is in this old convenient store. The parking lot is FULL of pick up trucks. My dad commented that it is a busy night. As we walk up I see tons of junk on the outside of the building. It must be retired auction items or you could call it plain old trash. We walk in and are immediately hit by a thick wall of smoke. There is STUFF everywhere. Boxes, bins, furniture, books, junk, junk, junk..... There are chairs set up in an audience type fashion. Most of them are folding chairs but there are a few old recliners. As we grabbed a seat I could not help but notice a few very obvious things. One was - almost everyone was smoking. Seriously, out of about 50 people (kids included) probably 30 were smoking. The other thing was that almost every southern/hillbilly stereotype was represented in that room. It was as if Jeff Foxworthy had written the scene himself. I am not making fun. I am serious. I am going to tell you exactly what I saw - no judgement or tone implied. I was just sitting there looking around. They had a little concession stand that sold hot dogs and Frito pies. There was people of all ages sitting around. Before the actual Auction started they sold raffle tickets. They were a dollar a ticket or 6 for $5. People were snatching them up. When they picked the winning ticket it belonged to this little kid, who was probably 6 or 7 years old. He was so excited. He went up to collect his $72 prize. He took that wad of money (mostly ones) and rolled it up and stuffed it into his pants pocket. He was set for the auction. His dad (who was missing one of his front teeth) seemed pretty proud of his son.

The auctioneer grabs the microphone and he is ready to go. This is how this auction works. People offer to bring their stuff to be auctioned off. It is set up ahead of time. They agree to give the auction house a percentage of their earnings. This particular night there were 3 different people showing their stuff. The auctioneer did the typical auction banter. I thought that was pretty cool. The first guys didn't really have anything all that great. It was mostly stuff you could buy at the flea market for $1. I did bid on this cast iron butterfly candle holder thing. I bid $1. It went up to $3 - out of my price range for something that would probably end up in my next garage sale. My Dad did get some hack saw blades. He said it was a good deal. The second guy came up and he was something else. He had tattoo's all over his arms. His arms, down to his second knuckles were black. You really couldn't tell where one tattoo stopped and the others started. He was a BIG man and had his eyebrow pierced. He had a woman helping him, who was wearing camouflage pants, work boots and was pregnant. He had some serious junk. I think he had cleaned out an old garage or something. I bid on a boomerang and won! Yeah...only $1. I don't know if it works yet or not. I did let a few things go that I should have snatched up but by time Jake and I discussed it- well, it was too late. Jake is far to contemplative for the auction scene. The third guy had more junk. Old, old stuff that no one would possibly want. He had three ironing boards. No one was even bidding on them. He was frustrated so he put a dollar bill on the ironing boards. Someone did bid on them. They went for $1! I saw him pulling stuff out of a junk box and there were 3 telephone books it the box! Who would want that. Believe it or not people were snatching stuff up like crazy. I asked my dad why and he said they take the stuff and sell it at the flea market or at other auctions. Crazy! Remember the little boy, who won the money? He left with 4 trash bags full of stuffed animals and 2 boxes of toys. He was in heaven. He also had a pair of old army boots that were way too big. He was wearing them.

Here are some things that sold at the auction.....
  • Norman Rockwell collector plate (sold for $4.50)
  • Military Stretcher (sold for $1) - I wanted to bid on it...Jake said no.
  • Numb Chucks
  • Food Processor from the 80's.
  • Toilet Auger & Drain Snake ($1.50 for the pair)
  • old love seat
  • a glider
  • lamps
  • old dishes
  • box of religious books
  • Bible on tape, KJV, missing two tapes
So, overall it was fun. At least it was entertaining. I'd like to go to more auctions and I'll even go back to that one when I am visiting Scott County.


Anonymous said...

I was talking with some Amish relatives about the auctions they have when someone dies. They said to never consider anything junk until the auction is over! Example: they were carting stuff away they considered junk. A rusty lantern fell off the wagon and broke on the way. So they thought, well, if it won't cooperate in going to the junk pile, we'll take it back for auction. It sold for a little under $100. Garden art, or some such thing.
Aunt Nancy

Anonymous said...

I love auctions - but I tend to get carried away. Once I decide to start bidding on something my competitive side kicks in and I don't want to stop!! There is an auction close to our house - every Friday night. And on Monday's they auction off groceries - I haven't gone on Monday's but Friday's have been interesting. My favorite though are estate auctions.