Thursday, May 22, 2008

On things you have done for a very short time

On things you have done for a very short time

A couple of years ago, I was visiting my dad Professor J.C. Duck down in Truro, that well-known roadkill-eating capital of the world.

On a spare day, we went into the City Centre for a bit of sight-seeing and shopping. Wandering in and out of shops that were exactly the same as those in every other town in the UK, we stumbled across a crumbling building in a backstreet behind the cathedral with a large, hand-written sign outside.

"AUCTION: TODAY" it said.

Neither I nor my charming wife had ever been to an auction before, and spurred on by a world of orange-skinned David Dickinson and cheap-as-chips bargains, we decided to give it a go.

So, we squeezed into a packed auction room and found a couple of seats near the back just in time to hear the auctioneer's hammer and the words:

"SOLD! To the gentleman in the green baseball hat. And that concludes today's sale..."

I have, then, spent a total of three seconds of my life in auctions.

Of course, I could say that I was that gentleman in the hat just for comic effect, but that would be 100% of lie.

OK, I WAS that gentleman in the hat, and I'd just bought a piston engine. Happy?

What, he asks, shamelessly stealing the idea from Danny Baker's BBC London show, have you done for short periods of time? Premature ejaculators need not apply.

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