Friday, 28 August 2009

Street bought for 1,000 euros in auction cock-up.

A Lebanese translator from Berlin now owns a street in the Brandenburg town of Havelsee for the low price of €1,000 after officials botched an auction.

The development has made residents of the street anxious because they don’t know what his plans are, daily Berliner Morgenpost reported on Wednesday.

Wassim Saab, who owns a translation business in Berlin’s Wilmersdorf district, discovered online that the town planned to auction off the street for the symbolic sum of €1 after the original developer went bankrupt.

“We didn’t anticipate a fellow bidder,” building authority head Christiane Neumeister told the paper about the auction two weeks ago. “There we made a mistake.”

Inside the auction hall were only Saab, Neumeister and the head of the nearby community of Beetzsee’s building authority – who was supposed to buy the 5,200-square-metre street for €1 and take control of the road.

But minutes later she watched helplessly as the street – including street lamps and water pipes – was awarded to Saab. According to the paper, she brought just the symbolic €1 to the auction and it did not occur to her to increase her bid, though Havelsee’s Mayor G√ľnter Noack told the paper she was authorised to do so.

“I still need to think about whether I will sell the street or charge fees for the irrigation and drainage,” Saab told the paper, adding that he will not “unduly stress” the some 100 residents nearby.

The housing development street is in the Briest district of Havelsee and was built in the 1990s by investor Ulrich Pietrucha, who had long been offering it to the city for €1. A corresponding contract was already at the building authority, but no one had addressed it due to reported damage to the street and the €100 to €200 notary fee it would have required to process.

“But the women thought they were clever and thought they’d get the street for one euro,” investor Pietrucha said.

Their thrift could end up costing the town of Havelsee dearly. Residents could now sue for government liability of the new owner charges them extra fees.

Pietrucha told the paper the city must buy the street back from Saab – but experts estimate the true worth could be up to €500,000.
The Local (

Thursday, 27 August 2009

World's Largest Rubber Band Ball For Auction

From the Auction:

My name is Joel Waul creator of Megaton The World’s Largest Rubber Band Ball.

Megaton is 6ft 7′ high, 9,032 LBS, & 25ft Circumference.

The old record was 5ft 5′ high, 4,594 LBS, & 19ft Circumference.

I started it on April 10, 2004 after seeing Tony Evans drop his ball from a plane on Ripley’s Believe It or Not.

4 yrs 7 months later it’s the world’s largest. Verified by Guinness World Records on November 13, 2008.

Guinness World Records has it as #9 of the 10 best world records of 2008.

Megaton’s first 3,200 lbs are store bought rubber bands these rubber bands cost $3.49-$5.99 per lb.

The other 5,832 pound are made up of 40′- 45′ custom made rubber bands that can stretch around your car. Some of these custom bands cost up to $32 per lb.

Auction Link: Megaton Giant Rubber Band

Monday, 24 August 2009

Bonhams to auction of the largest known Tyrannosaurus rex specimens ever discovered.

LAS VEGAS, NV.- One of the largest known Tyrannosaurus rex specimens ever discovered will be offered by international auctioneers Bonhams & Butterfields on Saturday, October 3, 2009 during the company’s first Natural History auction to be held at The Venetian ® in Las Vegas. The auction will contain approximately 50 lots of fossils with the centerpiece of the sale focusing on the expertly mounted female T. rex, expected to bring millions of dollars. The rare 66-million year old Tyrannosaurus skeleton – dubbed “Samson” – is arguably one of the three most complete specimens to have been discovered. Native to North America, Tyrannosaurus rex is recognized as the ‘Tyrant Lizard King’ and is the most famous of the behemoths of the “Age of Dinosaurs.” This rare example from the Cretaceous period was excavated near Buffalo, South Dakota over 15 years ago.

Originally prepared by scientists and technicians at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, “Samson’s” skull is considered to be one of the most complete Tyrannosaurus skulls in existence. The entire specimen contains approximately 170 bones, more than 50% of the total bone count of an entire skeleton. In life, “Samson” was equal in weight to “Sue,” the Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton which sold for $8.3-million in 1997.

Of further interest are pathologies (evidence of healed injury or disease) of the skull and portions of the skeleton that open a window into the life of this virtual beast. The skeleton is beautifully prepared and mounted utilizing the most modern methods, which allows for new discoveries and enhanced aesthetic qualities.

According to Peter Larson, Tyrannosaur Paleontologist: “Although research on this particular Tyrannosaurus is still incomplete, it is believed by experts to be one of four possible examples of a yet unnamed species of Tyrannosaurus. I look forward to seeing the entire assembled and fully prepared skeleton in Las Vegas.”

This animal was most likely a very skilled hunter with binocular color vision and an extremely sensitive sense of smell. In life, “Samson” measured approx 40-feet in length and could have looked into a second story window. Its massive skull and powerful serrated teeth could have bitten through the leg bone of any contemporary dinosaur. During the Cretaceous Period, Tyrannosaurs occupied a position at the apex of the food chain giving this creature lasting celebrity.

“Bonhams & Butterfields’ fall auction celebrates the art of natural wonders and the continued excitement associated with a possible new discovery,” said Thomas Lindgren, Co-Director of Natural History at Bonhams & Butterfields.

In addition to “Samson,” the October 3rd sale will also feature approximately 50 lots of high quality and distinctive dinosaur specimens and exceptional fossils. Other highlights will include a fully mounted, 28-foot-long “duckbilled” dinosaur skeleton and a 7-foot-long fossil shark from the Permian Period, which was discovered in Germany.

The illustrated catalogue will be available online for review at in the weeks preceding the auction. The specimen will be exhibited and sold in the space formerly occupied by The Guggenheim Hermitage Museum, designed by renowned architect Rem Koolhaas.

Public Auction: October 3, 2009, The Venetian, Las Vegas / Public Preview: September 18-October 3, 2009, The Venetian, Las Vegas