I found out something about myself.  I have a deep, dark place inside I never knew existed that cannot be let loose, cannot be let out alone, and cannot be handed a checkbook.

I have auction sickness. And it’s bad.

Real bad.

My in-laws are antiquers.  I think that’s the word for it.  I’d call them “pickers” but I might get slapped, that might be the new trendy faux-reality TV word, I’m not sure.  Whatever they are, they are good at it, and occasionally they come across some neat things, and Mr. Who and I go to an auction to check them out.  We rarely buy anything because we have no idea the value of things.  What I think is worth $5 goes for $500 or $300 goes for $1, so, in essence, I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing.

Recently, a man who lived in his mom’s basement was selling a plethora of instruments.  CarrieLouWho kinds of instruments; wooden recorders, Japanese stringed instruments, snake charmer instruments, Native American flutes, you name it.

I wanted them. For the right price, which wasn’t much. I wasn’t going there to spend a lot of money.

I really wasn’t.

But then, something terrible happened.

I was given a number.

They started holding up things I needed, and they weren’t even at the instruments yet!  A box of crystal? Well, darn it, that’s pretty, and what a bargain! I might need that! I excitedly hold up my arm to point, while Mr. Who, and Mr. and Mrs. Who-in-Law tackle me and throw me to the ground reminding me to NEVER raise my hand in an auction house unless I want to buy something.

I dust off my coat, put my hair back in place, and sit back down with an ice bag on my jaw from Mrs. Who-in-Law’s right uppercut and sit there like a good girl.

But oh man, there was a wicker corner table, and a box of rocket pieces, and huge wicker giraffe that Twin A the Burly would love to tackle and break into tiny pieces and OH MY LORD I NEED THAT!

Mr. Who’s hand gripped my shoulder tightly, and he gently moved in to give me what I thought was a kiss and instead I hear: “CarrieLou, don’t make me take that number off of you.”

Defeated, I sit back and finish my auction house nachos, looking excitedly at all the things I couldn’t have but desperately needed.  Kites that flew YOU, velvet paintings, guitars, and glass pieces I always thought were ugly when my grandma collected them (R.I.P. grandma).

Then my instruments were up.  It was my turn, I finally got to hold up my number.  I had a set price in my head and was ready.  I had a straight poker face, and held up my number like a good girl.

But, what was this?  I was being bid against?  What?? Oh HELL NO! I bid again, and again, and again.  Mr. Who is trying to hold my arm down, and my head is screaming: “FORGET THE BUDGET!!!!” but the first instrument had to be let go or else I’d be tackled again.

I stop, use my inhaler, and wait. Next instrument, and I am ready, and OH! OH! OH! OH!….I WIN!!! YES!!!!!

It’s all I can do to not run up and down the aisles Rocky style.  Mr. and Mrs. Who-in-Law are whispering to themselves, most likely reminding each other to never, ever, ever bring me along again.

I win the next few sets of instruments, get into a few more battles, but I got most of what I wanted. I am drained, exhausted, and a little bit broke.

It’s been decided that I shouldn’t go to another auction for a while.  I get the sickness too easily.  “Want-itis” comes on faster than normal, and it’s hard to contain. I’d probably buy someone’s granny for the right price if I got too excited.

“Hey now, folks, we have here an elderly woman with one broken hip, a walker, mostly white hair, and dentures.  She bakes a mean chocolate walnut cookie, and smells like Red Door. Let’s start the bidding at ONE HUNDRED!”

OHHHH ME ME ME!!! You never know, we might need one!

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