I’ve been in bed with the flu and after three days of continuous sleeping I found myself awake, weak and needing television at 6 in the morning. Imagine my delight to find an episode of Cash In The Attic just starting. It was a Christmas week miracle. No, really! Here was a show I would have gladly watched in prime time available at 6 in the a.m. when only re-runs of Full House or Family Matters were on. It’s like finding an old episode of Antiques Roadshow in the middle of the night.
The host of C.I.T.A has those eyes that are a little too out there and a little too wide but his enthusiasm is boundless. The premise of the show is to create some needed cash for the homeowner by auctioning their unwanted tchotchkes. The family is always deserving: either the father doesn’t have work or someone’s been ill or is in Iraq. Each participant needs a modest sum usually under $2000 to fulfill a decorating dream. In the episode I watched the mother wants to buy a new bedroom set for her daughter. The C.I.T.A team begins to scavenge the house room by room. They pick up items, pause, and ask the owner: Are you sure you want to part with this? The owner, caught up in the moment, nods yes in a stupor. This would be my dream team. Are you kidding me? They come to my house, take all the “stuff” and put it in their truck! What’s wrong with this picture? NOTHING!
When the house, garage and attic are picked clean, the team estimates what the treasures will yield at the auction. Secretly the audience (me) is rooting that the figure will grow and the deserving contestant will double or triple the money needed.
Fast forward to the auction. The C.I.T.A. team and the contestant are in the front row cheering and crying and carrying on. Here’s how the auction went: Four Louisa May Alcott dolls (Jo was missing) that had been bought from a neighbor for five dollars each sold for $30 each. The husband’s antique six pack metal coke holder went for $30. An old wooden tube radio went for $30. An etched coffee table top with (I think) the map of the U. S. went for $40. An old Bausch and Lomb microscope went for over $100. Then they sold off the girl’s old bedroom set that looked perfect - good mahogany with a bowfront dresser and fourposter bed, etc. it brought in a few hundred dollars.
The auctioned items realized not the $1100 they needed for the new bedroom set but $1180. I always think that Oprah is watching and will help them in a much better way. And speaking of Oprah, did you see her on the Kennedy Center Honors program? In back of the honorees were all the companions. Yes, there was Stedman and Gayle in back of Oprah and Sir Paul’s new girlfriend in back of him. At one point while Sir Paul was mouthing the words to one of his songs as Steven Tyler sang it, the girlfriend rested her chin on Sir Paul’s shoulder.
When Alec Baldwin was introducing Paul’s segment and began the sentence: “Paul married. . . “ I thought he was going to say Paul married a neurotic gold digger named Heather but instead he said Paul married rock and roll to beauty.
Anyway, I’m better today. and I lost four pounds.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!