Props from The Office up for auction

You can own the reception desk from Dunder Mifflin's Scranton branch! Hundreds of props from The Office are now up for auction. Items include the likes of Angela's stuffed cat, Dwight's wolf art, and myriad desk items like calculators, computer screens, desk lamps, files, keyboards, beets, bears, Battlestar Galactica.

The Office auction (Screenbid)

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David Bowie's first recording, thought lost, now headed to auction

In 1963, David Bowie (then David Jones), age 16, recorded a demo song “I Never Dreamed” with his band The Konrads. Long thought lost, Konrads drummer David Hadfield found it in the 1990s in an old breadbox. Until now he's kept quiet about the find but has decided to auction it off. It's expected to sell for £10,000. Above is a short clip of the tune. From Omega Auctions:

Hadfield recalls ‘Our agent, Eric Easton, who also managed The Rolling Stones, asked us to do a demo so he could try and get us an auction at Decca. So in early 1963 I booked into R.G.Jones small studio in Morden. In preparation for the demo David and our guitarist Neville Wills wrote 2/3 songs. We had decided that we would do a couple of guitar instrumentals and one original song. I chose “I Never Dreamed” as it was the strongest, the other two were a bit weak! I also decided that David was the best person to sing it and give the right interpretation. So this became the very first recording of David Jones (Bowie) singing 55 years ago! There is no other recording featuring David as lead in existence. Decca initially turned us down, but when they eventually gave us an auction later that year, vocalist Roger Ferris was the lead voice and David sang backing harmonies.’

(Thanks, Bob Pescovitz!)

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The red sports car from Ferris Bueller's Day Off is going to auction

The 1961 Ferrari 250GT California. Less than 100 were made. In Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Cameron's father spent three years restoring this car. It is his love. It is his passion... It is actually a Modena GT Spyder, and it's currently being put up for auction in California:

From Mecum Auctions:

The three cars used in the film were not Ferraris at all, but rather three Modena GT Spyder Californias built by Modena Design and Development in El Cajon, California, were utilized. This is one of those cars used in the movie, complete with documents from Modena Design attesting to such. Modena incorporated a number of Ferrari-style elements, such as the windshield, turn signals, grille, hood scoops, fender vents and a custom fiberglass body that was supposedly modeled after an MG, creating a close profile to the original Ferrari. The chassis was of the rectangular steel-tube frame design, built by Bob Webb, who worked on Roger Penske’s Zerex Special. After nine months of refreshing and updating by one of the founders of Modena Design, Neil Glassmoyer, this car emerged looking stunning. Chassis No. 0003 of the 3 cars built, it is powered by a 5.0L V-8 engine fed by four downdraft carburetors, and the attention to detail throughout largely sets the Modena GT Spyder California apart from its competition. The engine uses black crinkle-finished valve coves, retina-searing red paint on the exterior, and the interior reflects all too well the timeless beauty of this machine with rich tan upholstery, exquisite gauges, inspiring switchgear, a period-looking radio and wooden steering wheel.

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Guillotine watch

Zeigeisty-ist auction ever: Marie Antoinette’s Jewelry to Be Auctioned in Geneva This November. (Image: Mosiac36, CC-BY) (Thanks, Peter!) Read the rest

Umbrella-camera and other Soviet spy cams up for auction

Next Thursday, Aston's auctioneers will sell off a private collection of cameras including some fantastic Soviet-era spy cams. According to the auction house's camera specialist, the most curious item is a camera containing a second camera (image below):

At first glance this appears to be a normal Zenith E camera it it's case, but opening it reveals a hidden miniature F-21 AJAX-12 camera. The camera is mounted so the f2.8 28mm lens is pointing out of the side edge of the case. On pressing a small button on the bottom of the case the internal mechanism cleverly raises a hidden internal flap, the camera shutters fires and the flap immediately closes shut. The user simply carries the camera over their shoulder in the normal way, but can take pictures at 90 degrees without raising any suspicion as it looks like the camera is in it's case and not being used. The camera uses 21mm film and has a clockwork drive for multiple shots without detection.

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Vintage IBM lab coveralls on eBay

One of my eBay alerts finally pinged! A Boing Boing reader will surely become the lucky owner of these splendid IBM lab coveralls, dated to the late 1980s or thereabouts, which have a buy-it-now price of $170 and ship out of California. Read the rest

Beethoven original musical manuscript up for auction

Two pages of Ludwig Van Beethoven's original musical manuscript for his Emperor Concerto (Piano Concerto No. 5) are up for auction. The 1809 document is expected to go for US$250,000-$350,000. The Emperor Concerto was the last piano concerto Beethoven completed. From Bonham's:

The first page is a sketch for the second theme of the first movement. Orchestral exposition, beginning with bar 3 in E flat minor with the following major version in B flat major. The further course is noted in a very shortened form (partly within the bar line division no entries, partly pauses, partly obviously only bass tones). The second page contains ideas for the second and third movements. The material of the second movement (found on staves 1-7) is the earlier version of this movement which Beethoven wrote in theme and variations form. Time signature of 2/4 and in B major (but with only four sharps in the key signature). Including the autograph markings "pizz," "tutti" and "minore" (most likely referring to the envisaged minor-mode variation) and twice the notes "Solo" and "una corda." Staves 8-11 are a sketch for the transition to the 3rd movement, with a notation of the final theme - with a different rhythm and different metric at the end "dopo presto."

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An auction for Rolly Crump's "Museum of the Weird" art from the Haunted Mansion that never was

Rolly Crump (previously) was one of the weirdest, most bohemian of the original group of Imagineers; when he was tasked with developing concepts for the oft-stalled and perennially beleaguered Disneyland Haunted Mansion, he came up with the Museum of the Weird, a guided walkthrough spook house filled with mystical illusions, and psychedelic, daemonic imagery. Read the rest

You can own the actual furniture from Mad Men

Screenbid is holding an online auction for furniture, props, and other items seen on Mad Men. The high ticket items are Don's 1964 Chrysler Imperial (asking bid $40,000), Don's box of secrets from Adam Whitman (asking bid $2100), and the SCDP office sign (asking bid $1,900.) Don's office TV is pretty sharp though but apparently doesn't actually work.

Mad Men 2018 Auction

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Buy Steve McQueen's auto racing suit from Le Mans

You will never be as cool as Steve McQueen, but for around $500,000, you could win the actual Hinchman race suit and Bell helmet he sported in Le Mans, the classic 1971 auto racing film. It's up for bid at Sotheby's on December 6 as part of the New York - Icons auction. Of course you'll still need to save your pennies for the blue #20 Gulf-Porsche 917K that last sold at auction for $14 million.

(via Uncrate)

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Own a decommissioned lighthouse with bids starting at $10K

Psst, wanna buy a lighthouse? As more and more are decommissioned thanks to GPS, the market has seen an influx of lighthouses for sale. Read the rest

You could live in a lighthouse auctioned off by the US government

The United States General Services Administration is auctioning off six lighthouses, one on in Chesapeake Bay, Maryland and five Michigan's Great Lakes. Bidding starts at around $15,000 and there isn't much action yet! From Mental Floss:

Prospective bidders must agree to put down a $5,000 to $10,000 deposit on the lighthouse they’re interested in. They must also be prepared to renovate the house’s interior so it will meet the legal standards for public habitation. The actual property each lighthouse stands on will still belong to the government, but with the building no longer needed for its original purpose, the new owner will be free to transform it into a bed and breakfast, a summer home, or anything else they envision.

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Autographed photo of Einstein sticking out his tongue sells for big bucks

This photo of Albert Einstein has been an old favorite of geeks-of-all-stripes for years. I remember my much older brother Mark, a scientist and surgeon, had a huge poster of it on his wall in college. An original print of the photo, taken by UPI photog Arthur Sasse on March 14, 1951 at Einstein's 72nd birthday party, just sold at auction for $125,000. The print is signed by Einstein at the bottom. The full frame shows Einstein with Princeton's Frank Aydelotte, head of the Institute of Advanced Study at Princeton University, and his wife Marie Jeanette.

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FBI surveillance van from the 1980s on eBay

Ginter Senfeldas of Cary, North Carolina, says he purchased this 1989 Dodge Ram 350 "FBI surveillance van" from a government auction site. It's apparently outfitted with vintage A/V tech, external microphones, pinholes for cameras, and other interesting modifications. Apparently when he purchased it, there were handcuffs, binoculars, "and even leftover video from an old FBI stakeout" inside.

From the auction listing, details of the "interesting" features:

3 Extra Batteries + onboard charger/adapter Toilet in the back 2 LCD Screens Video recorders/Players with all the gadgets Tape Recorder/Player INTERCOM Rear AC/Heat Unit Propane Tanks Radars Amplifiers A lot of 110V Sockets * You can turn off/on the engine from the back * Every door has extra locks!

"Vintage FBI surveillance van listed for sale on eBay" (CBS News)

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Unheard Michael Jackson album up for auction

A CD containing nine unheard Michael Jackson songs that are reportedly master recording quality will be on the auction block next week. The winner won't have legal distribution rights though. From Rolling Stone:

The starting bid on the unreleased album is $50,000, though organizers tell Rolling Stone that they expect the final price to go as high as $1 million. Whoever takes home the CD will not own rights to the music, so the winning bidder cannot distribute the recording. According to the auction house, the album was obtained by "the personal friend and personal assistant to Michael whose family was very close to Michael for many years, traveling all over the world with him." When reached for comment, a rep for (auctioneers) Gotta Have Rock and Roll said Jackson's friend wished to remain anonymous.

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Bid on old computers, speakers, radios, and other junk from the bowels of RadioShack

Starting July 10, you can bid on TRS-80 computers, dot matrix printers, Realistic speakers, shortwave receivers, old catalogs, and company "memorabilia" from the bowels of bankrupt RadioShack. From the auction site:

From humble beginnings in Boston in 1921, over the past 95 years RadioShack established itself as a globally recognized leader and the go to retailer for consumer electronics. RadioShack has always been known as the place for answers to the American public's technology and electronics questions. "You've got questions, we've got answers."

Over the years, RadioShack introduced consumers to exciting and affordable gadgets and electronics that have become household items. As we cleaned out our historic archives in Fort Worth, Texas, we uncovered a cache of iconic memorabilia in 12 huge safes, including: unused original TRS-80 Microcomputers, Realistic Transistor Radios, Tandy computer software games, original brick cell phones and so much more. We all remember coming into RadioShack whether it was for the battery-of-the-month, new walkie-talkies, or to check out the newest RC toy cars. Now we reintroduce many of those nostalgic items and more with our rolling online memorabilia auction.

RadioShack Auction #1 (thanks, Charles Platt!)

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Up for auction: the never-seen original 1957 Haunted Mansion prospectus

Heritage Auctions is selling off a super-rare original 1957 prospectus for the Haunted Mansion, prepared by Ken Anderson as a first approximation of what Disneyland's "spook house" might be. Read the rest

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