Orrery-orrey-orrey-o… it’s off to work I go!

Nice turnings!

Nice turnings!

One of the many interesting things I do to cobble together a living is writing, usually about really old things… I mean antiques. On occasion I write articles for antiques trade newspapers and magazines, sometimes interviewing collectors or dealers, but mostly covering shows and auctions. My work reads a bit like the illegitimate offspring of the sports page and the stock market report, living in sin with the Arts pages. There really ain’t nothin’ like the antiques biz.

Last weekend I was covering an auction, which is normal because if it’s Holly birthday, I am almost always hitting a deadline of one kind or another, or off in some hall somewhere in an uncomfortable seat, watching other people buy really expensive and really quite beautiful things. Hey, it’s better than most TV and almost all movies right now. But I haven’t been around for many of Holly’s birthdays. This time, however, thanks to the miracle of modern technology, I was able to cover the auction – even from a rather remote wilderness location – and still be home for cake.

The Albright auction, held by Anderson Auctions this past weekend in Elora, Ontario, had simultaneous on-line bidding, so I was able to monitor the action and get a record of all the prices realized. (Getting reliable sell prices is trickier than you might think). So, check in on the action, then head to the studio to build a slip case for a trilogy of books. Refresh the browser, then meander into the village to buy a birthday card for Holly. Back to the computer, save the web pages as PDFs, and so on. Gotta love it! Of course, that’s just the foundation. I’m in the midst of follow-up interviews, some analysis, then it will be time to sit down and write the thing.

Normally I wouldn’t pull a spoiler on any work that I do, but this is more of a teaser. The Albright Sale was a fine old Canadiana collection, from the home of long-time collectors and dealers, and folks who really seemed to know their stuff. Canadiana Eclectic, is the best way to describe it. In keeping with this idea, one very cool item in the auction was this vintage rather primitive orrery, in working order apparently, that tracks the motion of the planets as it swings about. My inner twelve-year-old thought it was the coolest thing in the sale. My outer 40-something-too-too-close-to-50 will probably examine more significant pieces in the coverage, but there you go.

The article will come out in The Upper Canadian Antiques Showcase at some point in the not-to-distant future, in a galaxy near you.

And happy birthday Holly. Glad I could be here for it!

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One Comment on “Orrery-orrey-orrey-o… it’s off to work I go!”

  1. Deb Says:

    Happy birthday for Holly, indeed!


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