Earlier this month, I went to the Mecum Auction at the Dallas Convention Center to check out the scene. For those of you unfamiliar, Mecum Auction Company has been doing collector car auctions for the last 25 years. On a lonely weekend night, or early weekend morning, you might have also seen these auctions on Discovery’s Velocity Network.
I’m a car nerd, so it’s fun for me to go check out the classic cars and see millions of dollars of automobiles auctioned off right in front of me. Even though Barry Obama, and many others, will tell us we’re in the midst of a recession, the money that flies around at these auctions will make you think that we’re going to be just fine. Or it tells us that the 1% is going to be just fine and maybe the rest of us should try investing in old Detroit Iron.
While most people attend the auction with the goal of bidding on a car, after a few beers my buddy and I decided it was our goal to try to get on TV. After a little bit of recon, we determined the best way to get on TV was by feigning interest in cars right before they cross the stage. By watching the regulars, we determined there were three key moves that we needed to execute as we got close to the stage, and the cameras, to look like we belonged there:
1. Fake a phone call – Say things like, “Now is the time!” and “we gotta act fast on this one,” like you are on the phone with a prospective buyer with vast sums of money who is preferably from the Middle East.
2. Get your face close to the paint – Seriously, take a good long look, and then talk about the orange peel or lack thereof. (Trust me.)
3. Get under the car – Serious bidders get under the car and look at stuff. The important stuff. So get under there, take your time, and soak it all up.
By far, #3 is the most fun. The cars are always moving and it’s kinda nice to slow down traffic a little bit while you stare up at the under carriage saying things like, “looks really clean,” or, “I don’t know man, there obviously used to be rust here.” Like most of you, I had very little idea of what I was looking at, or looking for, under those cars, but lying under them proved to be surprisingly empowering. In fact, it was so empowering that I’d like to encourage you to get unnecessarily under a car sometime soon. It might be at an auto auction, or maybe just an interesting car down the street, but if you do it, take a photo and hashtag it with #unnecessarilyundercars. Have fun out there, and please make sure the cars aren’t rolling.