Thursday, March 31, 2011

Picking in The Old Days Part 5

My grandmother genuinely loved that I wanted to tag along with her . . . I believe she enjoyed
 having her eldest grandchild enjoy her passion.
It's only now, with my own little grandchild wanting to tag along with me, that I have some understanding of how wonderful that feels.  Your grandchild believes you're the smartest person in the world, and everything you teach them is incredible evidence of your wisdom!


We attended auctions on occasion, where she instructed me on the fine points of the
pre-sale inspection.  

Check furniture for worm holes 
examine joints
check the slide of drawers
look at the back to see if it's original
has the piece been "married"
(a top and bottom that weren't originally made for one another)
check depth of mirrors for quality
evaluate warping
the list was endless.

I was bored with the inspection process -
  I wanted to 
 on something!
We continued to "examine" for hours.  

She always carried a bag of necessities : 
magnifying glass
tape measure
(to detect various metals)
a silver cleaning cloth
a paper fan from the Methodist church
a thermos of coffee
peanut butter crackers
her notebook
Crystalmint Lifesavers!

Finally, the auction would begin!

I learned the fine art of appearing disinterested in an item until the time came to surreptitiously 
move the bid card . . . ever so slightly . . . to notify the auctioneer of my bid.  
(No one but the auctioneer should ever know that you were bidding.)

I learned to predetermine the exact amount I would be willing to spend on an item, before the auction began.  This would keep me from getting caught up in the frenzy and from over bidding.

Mostly, I learned that auctions were not my cup of tea . . . too long and drawn out a process for me.
I didn't like the competition, or the losing.

I did like the peanut butter crackers, and watching other people's faces and their bidding techniques.
That was where I created my poker face.

To be continued in tomorrow's post.

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