Upon hearing the term ‘auction’, words like expensive, rare, collectors, great deals, and bidding are usually those that come to mind. There are preconceived notions and cartoonish stereotypes that items being sold in auctions are strictly for those of classy taste, high-priced antiques, and prime products. Well, there are exceptions to that. Not only are auction sites a great means to acquire practical items, but a lot of bizarre and borderline bonkers stuff as well. Auctions all around the world have some pretty bizarre stuff that actually sells for big bucks. Let’s get into some of the weird items at auctions:
Yes, you read that right. Toilets. You’ll be stunned by the price that some toilets sell for in auctions. There’s a chance that you might stumble across a toilet with a six-digit price range. That’s an outrageous price tag for something that you just do your business on. The reason for the massive numbers? Toilets that usually hold such a high price are usually once owned by celebrities and iconic figures. Famous people and their toilets rising to fame. I wonder what the people that buy these do with them.
You can buy alcoholic drinks at your local brewery or liquor store. But at an auction, there is liquor that has some hefty price tags. Most aren’t even special while others come with an insane history. Imagine acquiring aged wine from pirate shipwrecks. Some museums even acquire different wines from auctions. Who would’ve thought that alcoholic beverages being sold at auctions would contain such a rich history? The 17th-century man probably would’ve never expected his regular booze to sell for hundreds of thousands in the future.
Apart from the toilets mentioned earlier, there are other strange celebrity items that sell for skyrocket price tags. From underwear, handkerchiefs, and gift cards, all these items for much MORE than what they’re worth. Probably the most common items being sold at auctions with some celebrity significance are signed items. It’s amazing how a signature can increase the value of a common item. There are other radical items found at auctions that actually sell. Can you imagine, some people bid for more than P500,000 for a pair of underwear that was worn by a significant figure in history.
We all know that paintings are one of the most expensive pieces of furniture you can acquire. Paintings are a common sight at auctions, artwork by Rembrandt, Picasso, Van Gogh, are exceeding expensive and are desired by many. But imagine a painting of a cat or a dog by an unknown artist reeling in millions. It’s amazing how these paintings can sell for so much. What’s even more interesting is that people actually want them. Art is subjective, and there are a lot more people than you’d expected who consider these paintings immensely valuable.
We know that pets can sell for a lot of money, but a lifeless animal, who would’ve guessed that taxidermy would be of high demand. You probably would expect, historians, biologists, or museums to be interested in and purchase such things. But to anyone’s surprise, there are actually people who collect dead animals. These people would spend tens of thousands for something that looks as close to how it looks if it were alive. The extensive process of preserving the animal would justify the price, but to see them at an auction is something you would never really expect.
In the Philippines, buying and selling cars is a huge source of income for many. Most of these buy-and-sell businessmen use auctions as a way of finding the best prices for pristine automobiles. You’ll see several classic cars and modified pre-loved vehicles. A rare find at an auction that sometimes sells more than the second-hand market dictates, taxis. Yes, once in a blue moon, there is a taxi being sold at auctions. Surprisingly, these taxis are well maintained and in good shape. You’ll be surprised that there are pristine taxis that exist. Who would’ve thought that taxis could be sold at auctions for much more than they’re worth?
This has got to be the most bizarre of all items sold at auctions, specifically at online auctions, air. Yes, people actually sell zip-lock bags of air and make thousands from it. You’re probably wondering why people would sell air and what’s more questionable is who would buy them. You’re not alone with that thought. But there are those that sell bags of air that came from events, concerts, or parties.
Baseball and other sports memorabilia, (especially from the 1960s and earlier)
Cards like a Michael Jordan 1986-87 Fleer rookie card or a 1979 Wayne Gretzky can command high values. But cards from the 1960s and earlier are scarcer, because many got thrown out or weren’t taken care of properly. Items predating World War II often fetch the most at auction. Baseball cards aren’t the only type of baseball memorabilia collectors want. Old display pieces like advertising signs, posters, programs, pennants, stadium seats, and equipment are always in demand. Of course, golf, football, basketball, hockey, boxing and racing all have avid fans and collectors.
117-Year-Old Cadbury Chocolate Bar
While not as expensive as some of this other items on this list, it’s not less valuable. This more than 100-year-old Cadbury’s chocolate bar accompanied Capt. Robert Scott’s first expedition to the Antarctic from 1901 through 1904. The 4-inch bar, wrapped and uneaten in a cigarette tin, was part of 3,306 pounds of cocoa and chocolate Scott took on the trip.
A Bunch of Grapes
This price is for a bunch, mind you: 30 grapes, at $360 apiece. Ruby Roman grapes were developed over 14 years and bred for minimal acidity and maximum sweetness. The supermarket owner who bought them gave customers a taste of his prize; in a previous grape auction in 2011, the purchasing chef threw them right into a dessert.
Hand-cut Jigsaw Puzzle
Rachel Page Elliott hand-cut this wooden puzzle to benefit the The Golden Retriever Foundation and sold it during a charity event at the Eisenhower Conference Center in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. The author of a book and video on canine anatomical structure and movement, Elliott created a work consisting of 467 interlocking pieces, with many cut in her unique designs of birds, cats, horses, and golden retrievers. Elliott died in 2009, and this puzzle has since resurfaced on eBay for a more manageable $6,000.