I was clicking around on my television early Sunday afternoon, trying to find the rerun of “Meet the Press.”
I grew up with five or six channels on the television, and my modern cable feed — with hundreds of channels — sometimes takes me down some wild rabbit holes.
I was rowing away through the channel listings when “Mecum Main Attractions” popped into view on NBC.
I immediately hit the watch button, and a 1969 Dodge Charger resto mod in custom neon green paint glowed on the screen. I love high-definition television!
This was Mecum’s 2021 Kissimmee Auction, and I realized this show was a highlight reel of sorts. The announcers breathlessly told me that this car was a unique resto mod, as it was really a 2016 Dodge Hellcat SRT with a custom 1969 Dodge Charger body.
The car, Lot F232, hammered at $335,000, which told me two things:
Resto mods are still hot, and the right build will bring in the bucks.
The car world is hungry for auctions.
I also realized that I was puppy-dog eager for in-person auctions again. Many places still can’t hold in-person auctions, but there’s hope that will change fast as vaccines go into arms.
I kept watching, and I loved Lot S146, the 1957 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Roadster with the red leather interior. Mecum’s Hollywood-style lighting made the fabulous car look even more fabulous. These cars are always in fashion, and in my mind, they’re blue-chip market indicators.
The car hammered at $1,100,000.
I wanted to be in that highlight reel so badly!
I’ve gone to dozens of car auctions over the past 11 years, and I miss the excitement, the people watching and the invisible — but tangible — electric charge that ripples through the crowd when an exceptional car arrives on the block.
All too soon, “Mecum Main Attractions” ended — for a figure-skating championship, of all things.
By the end of 2021, I may well be tired of going to collector-car auctions. I sincerely hope so.
But I will never again take for granted the marvelous experience of being in the middle of many interesting cars — and fascinating people.
I miss auctions.