As I walked to my truck from the Historical Society, I returned to, and here remind that, I am right now at the starting of the antiquarian gauntlet of: Late fall, ‘the holidays’, Thanksgiving weekend, the first weeks in December, Christmas, New Years and... January. January is a month filled with antiques trade ‘shows’, ‘sales’, ‘auctions’ and ... ‘antiques weeks’... that follow upon the November-December ‘to a lesser degree’ same and... all of this time stretch is additionally full of... all of the behind the scenes in-trade string pulling upon those titled mannequins (‘shows’, et al).
I found that Charles’ home was ‘emptied’? That the desk found there had ‘gone to auction’ ‘out of state’? That Mr. Simon’s summer place was ‘emptied’ and ‘sold’? That the Captain Merritt Kimball estate was closed up until its ‘summer people’ return to this their ‘summer place’... next summer? Therefore we are finally running out of tale?
I knew that all the JUNK that would be coming from Charles’ home to the Historical Society sale would be a ‘just that’; the residue of the picked over, internet researched and greedy purloinments of the H&W trio. THEY would “keep” the they designated ‘good stuff’... EXCEPT for the DESK... in their, each, domestic storage rituals.... JUST THE SAME as the heirs of my grandmother’s estate had kept their graspings... ‘each’ too... for decades (Part Sixteen). From that mental clean OUT I moved to the mental clean UP of ‘the desk’.
As a peanut... under its walnut shell... I could presume that by now the desk had been ‘showed’, therefore “SEEN” by ...at least... THREE ‘out of state’ auction companies. That is, the desk... and its sale... by auction... had been “SHOPPED” by the trio just about the same way they would “SHOP” for the “BEST DEAL” (for them) on, for example, ‘new kitchen flooring’, etc. Best deal for them... and in addition to the core concern of “HOW MUCH WOULD IT BRING FIFTEEN THOUSAND RIGHT?”... would consider factors like ‘how much (sale percentage) commission THEY would have to PAY the auction company for “SELLING” ‘the desk’. This would be a stated ...and... auction house to auction house, item to item, sale to sale... variable... negotiable... argue about able and ...line in the sand type demandable... figure. That figure, from the trio’s vantage; an ‘all of this is new to us’ vantage, would be ‘considered’ and ‘acted on’ using ... THEIR VANTAGE skill. So, for example, MY vantage skill statement to them of “it would have to be done right. Sold properly to get that much” ($15,000.) (Part Twenty-Eight). AND the answering their “WOULD YOU AUCTION IT?” with “Maybe. But carefully” (Part Twenty-Nine)... were never even recalled by them on the desk’s out of state journey. Probably, I could presume.
This would mean that they ‘dickered’ a solution with an auction house and did consign the desk on some unknown exactly ‘terms’? That I could speculate on... myself... with both mind and WALLET? Yes.
They would have bargained for a high selling price “reserve” ($15,000), low commission rate (10%) and... not much else. Therefore the auction company would have had to “guarantee” a high selling price while accepting the smallest commission to successfully have the desk ‘in their auction’. THAT means... ‘no incentive - no money’ for... the desk will not sell for $15,000 ‘disclosed reserve’ without the “done right sold properly” and TO DO THAT the one DOING THAT would want to get PAID... A.... LOT... to “DO THAT”. For specific example, I, to “do that” would ‘charge’ five thousand dollars. Leaving them with ten thousand dollars. And, all considered, that’s ‘not bad’ unless they are ‘we know better than YOU ...are trying to screw us.” “Ok. I accept your terms, good luck”. This last option never came up either. The whole of this is in the “not much else” of their bargain. THERE was the room for things like “history, advertising, promotions, presentation, elegance, desire, love and... ‘extending credit to the purchaser’... to note A FEW... ‘you get what you pay for services’. From professionals. “In the business”.
Soooo... what happened is that the desk WAS consigned to a “OK WE’LL DO IT” auction house that simply... due to the no-money-in-it-for-us... pushed the desk against the side wall of their “JANUARY SALE”, took ONE photograph of it, used THREE words to describe and promote it (‘a tambour desk’) and ...that’s it?
NO: The desk was STILL RIGHT THERE after the sale and, by late January one of the trio had to come “BACK” with their SUV and ...reload the desk and ...drive it “BACK” (?). They; the H&W trio. had ‘no check’ and STILL HAVE.... HAVE... ‘the desk... as I write.
As I write this in August of 2013 I know... that they still have the desk? That one of the trio couples is storing that desk? (For me?) That the others of the trio ‘know this’? That known is all; the trio has no ‘any (bright) ideas’ of ‘what to do’? That they will not have any for a while? That they will take an action after a while? That they will not contact me when they do? That they will not contact me at all? That as much as a decade could pass by and I’ve seen that happen plenty of times before? That there is nothing wrong with the desk it is just as good as it has ever been? This includes the desk ‘being in auction’ where NO ONE, including the auction house, remembers TODAY that it was ‘there then’? That even the trio couldn’t identify the desk out of THEIR context? That no further ‘anything’ (research, history, promotion, etc. including photographs... will be done? That the desk is... in fact therefore... being stored for me for no expense and with I NOT having to extend ANY venture capital into my speculation upon it? That, in further fact, NO ONE knows ANYTHING about this desk at all... except me?
These all have to be questions because... ‘anything can happen’.