TV Guide: Going, going, gone!

2012-09-21 13:15

A reality TV show about auctioning off weird stuff shows that one person’s junk is another’s treasure

I love watching people.

I find their bizarre habits intriguing, especially when stuck in traffic or waiting to board a flight at an airport.

So when I came across reality show Auction Kings on the Discovery World channel, it captivated me.

I have sentimental value in a lot of things lying around my place, whether it’s an old birthday card, key ring or collectible toy.

I’ve owned up to my hoarder behaviour before, but my biggest collection of absolute rubbish is probably my memory stick stash.

And I’ve often thought about selling it.

Auction Kings is a show about people who find rare items and auction them off for substantial amounts.

The people who pay top dollar for peculiar items enthral me as much as what I love learning about the items themselves.

I’ve never been to such auctions before, but watching it on TV is exciting – I always want to know just how far someone might go to put in a winning bid.

People sell the strangest things.

The show focuses on the crew at Gallery 63, which is basically a de luxe version of local stores Cash Crusaders and Cash Converters – or the dodgy pawn shops that lurk in obscure, quiet, street corners.

Gallery 63 is one of the US’ most popular auction houses, owned by Paul Brown.

The show explores their world of unique items, from used caskets to robots or star-spangled roadsters.

They sell everything from expensive oriental rugs to posters or old dolls.

Season 3’s episodes include one of Gallery 63 auctioning off a Confederate sword and a rare thousand-dollar bill.

The Garrett Brothers have high hopes for a motorised stool they’ve found and think it will bring in some cash, but the crowds aren’t always as excited as the sellers.

There’s a vintage soft-drink dispenser machine, a headhunter’s axe and a rare Vespa scooter.

Thing is, I can understand why people would want to get rid of weird items just collecting dust, but sometimes I can’t grasp why anyone would buy someone else’s junk.

Yes we all have our own little obsessions, but most of these items are completely useless and will serve no function and, in the end, just end up sitting pretty somewhere.

The show makes one realise how much money some lucky people can afford to waste.

I watched one episode in which a couple bid for a stunning, yellow diamond ring against another buyer bidding over the phone.

The caller bought the antique ring for about R250 000, for his fiancée to be.

While that has obvious value, it baffled me that another man paid R24 000 for a horse-head statue.

Whatever, though.

I’m addicted to the show.

» Follow me on Twitter @SpeedQueen
» Auction Kings is on Discovery World DStv channel 250 daily at 9pm

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