Thursday, January 6, 2011

Atlanta: The Auction Houses

My wonderful husband, The Canadian, and I had such a wonderful trip to Atlanta. Before we left we decided to do "touristy" activities throughout our ten day trip. One of those activities was visiting an auction house, Gallery 63. We're familiar with Gallery 63 because it is the home of one of our favorite TV shows, Auction Kings, featured on the Discovery Channel. The owner, Paul, is a charismatic Southern guy. He runs the show along with three other employees. The show tells the stories of items that come in, the item's history, and the final bidding war at auction.

That's Paul walking out the door. We met him...he complimented my sunglasses.

As it turns out, Paul is the son of the owner of another famous auction house, The Red Barron. I've driven by the Red Barron at least eight million times. I had no idea it was an auction house. I simply thought it was a place that sold tacky lawn ornaments and statues. After all, that is what the parking lot is packed with. If I had known, I would have been a regular customer years ago. Okay, maybe not - here's why.

1. I have absolutely no need for a 20 foot tall chest that retails for $45,000. You heard me.

2. If The Canadian knew he could buy a ship's cannon windows, he would.

3. I am not strong enough to move a 400 pound meteor.

4. Nor am I tough enough to lift a piece of quartz that weighs in at one ton.

5. If I owned this old jewelry chest then I would be forced to fill it with precious gems. Then we would be poor.

6. If I owned this grape crusher then I would need to plant a vineyard. Then I would need to enroll in AA. Immediately.

7. But if I did have a grape crusher and a vineyard then I could serve my wine on the ship I would have to buy to hold this bar that originally came from a ship.

8. But if I did have that ship, then I would have a bored sailor with too much time on his hands...thus the ugly, yet intricate, frame. I just hope that sailor wasn't at the helm.

9. If I owned this airplane I would be forced to fly it and most likely meet an untimely death.

10. While this garden thing would look lovely in my front yard, it's full of snow. Sorry.

11. No one needs an alligator. Especially those of us from Tennessee. Note: The Canadian did stick his head in the gator's mouth and made me take a photo. He just wouldn't let me post it.

12. This is an exception. I want approximately 90% of these chandeliers.

13. I can't play guitar but I should not own this anyway as it would do nothing but encourage my already undying urge to listen to non-stop 80s. Don Henley, Madonna, Bon Jovi....whew!

14. I do not need a phone booth. I don't care how awesome it is. I have an iPhone, thank you very much.

15. No one. I repeat, no one. Needs massive horses.

Anyway, these two auction houses were packed with treasures and deals. We could have spent hours wandering around. Looking. Not buying.

Oh yeah. When we were at the Red Barron and Gallery 63 there were no auctions going on. The Red Barron only auctions three times a year and Gallery 63 hosts once a month. Neither would be going on during our visit. However, another local auction house, Kings, was having an auction. So we went just to check it out. As luck would have it they all share the same auctioneer, John, who we've seen on Auction Kings so many times. John was getting the bidding started on a mahogany bench while the workers were setting up a lamp behind him. I love lamps and got all excited. As I pointed at the lamp in my excitement I accidentally bid on the bench. Oops. I would have been out $1250 and the proud owner of a new piece of furniture. Thankfully, I was quickly out bid. I'm not sure how we would have gotten that bench home.

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