- Written by Sy Rosen Sy Rosen
Like most avid Antiques Roadshow viewers, I often look around my house trying to find some old hidden treasures.
We have slightly cracked teacups, slightly cracked vases, and a slightly cracked coffee table (a lot of things in our house are slightly cracked, including me).
I finally settled on a 47-year-old empty Pepsi bottle that I had put a flower in and given to my wife, Wanda, on our first date. I told Wanda that I was thinking of selling it.
“How could you do that?!” she angrily asked. “I kept this Pepsi bottle because it was one of your few romantic gestures.”
I ignored the word “few” and just felt lucky that Wanda didn’t use the word “only.” Like a dutiful husband, I nodded my head in agreement.
I then secretly went on the internet to find the value of this rare Pepsi bottle. It must be worth a fortune, I kept thinking to myself. Unfortunately, I discovered it was worth somewhere between $6.99 and $8.99.
I then went back to Wanda and, not mentioning my disappointing research, told her I wouldn’t sell the Pepsi bottle if it were worth $1 million.
For some reason, I then started wondering what I would be appraised at if I went on Antiques Roadshow — not furniture, not artwork: me. I told you I was slightly cracked.
Anyway, this is how it might go as an expert looked me over:
“When we saw you walk in, we were all very excited,” the expert tells me.
“Thank you,” I modestly reply.
“You have a natural, grayish patina. It appears that nothing artificial has been done to enhance or alter it.”
“I’ve never been to a spa,” I proudly tell him.
“Collectors really like that,” the expert says. “And I can see by the roundness of your body that it too is in its natural state.”
“I’ve never been to a gym,” I brag.
“And it looks like your body has mostly avoided direct sunlight. Where do you usually keep it?” he then asks.
“On the couch in front of the television,” I boast.
“Unfortunately,” he says, “there is some wear and tear. You’re missing some hair, and you’ve lost a couple of inches of height, and there are wrinkles, liver spots, bad eyesight, cracked teeth, hearing loss, memory loss, and some significant sagging.”
“Yes, it’s called life,” I tell him.
“On the positive side, you have all of your original parts, except for your hip.”
“Yes, I had a hip replacement.”
“You don’t happen to have your original hip?” he asks.
“No, there wasn’t room in the refrigerator,” I joke.
He doesn’t laugh as he says, “That’s a pity. A collector would really like it.”
“How much am I worth?” I ask, cutting to the chase.
“Well, as I said, you’re not in mint condition, but your body is not that bad,” he says.
“‘Not that bad’ is a goal of mine,” I jokingly reply.
He again doesn’t laugh as he asks, “How much do you think you’re worth?”
“I don’t know, maybe $250,000,” I reply.
He finally laughs as he says, “I admire your optimism, but since nobody would really want your organs — ”
“I want them,” I interrupt.
He continues on, “I’d say you’re worth more in the neighborhood of … $480. Are you disappointed?”
“Actually, I’m not,” I reply. “The important thing is that I’m worth more than 50 Pepsi bottles.” And then I laugh.
Sy Rosen has written for many TV shows, including The Bob Newhart Show, Taxi, M.A.S.H., Maude, The Jeffersons, Rhoda, Frasier, Northern Exposure, and The Wonder Years. He now spends much of his time telling jokes to his grandkids and trying to convince his wife that he’s funny.