Common Tread

Lemmy's report card, Mecum auction edition

Jan 14, 2016

Dear Mr. and Mrs. Lemmy Senior: Attached is Lemmy’s latest report card.

On this particular assignment, Lemmy was instructed to choose six motorcycles up for bid in the Mecum auction and estimate their final sales price. Below are the results, along with the teacher’s grades and comments.

We hope you find this information useful.


Student: Lemmy
Date: Jan. 14, 2016
Assignment: Mecum auction estimates

Motorcycle: 1982 Honda CX500 Turbo
Lemmy’s estimate: $8,500
Sales price: $8,000
Grade: A

Teacher’s notes:

Lemmy, you have a persistent tendency to estimate too high, but any estimate that gets within 10 percent of the final price deserves an “A” grade.

Motorcycle: 1957 Ariel Square Four
Lemmy’s estimate: $23,000
Sales price: $23,000
Grade: A+

Teacher’s notes:

Excellent work, Master Lemmy!

Motorcycle: Daimler Reitwagen replica
Lemmy’s estimate: $6,000
Sales price: $4,500
Grade: D+

Teacher’s notes:

A bit more critical thinking would have prevented you from overvaluing this one by a full 33 percent. It’s just a replica. Buy some lumber and leather and parts and anyone can build one.

Motorcycle: 1949 Harley-Davidson EL
Lemmy’s estimate: $22,000
Sales price: $20,000
Grade: A

Teacher’s notes:

Good job, Lemmy. Again, within 10 percent. You’ve shown that there was some value in all those years wasted spent studying ads for used-up Harleys.

Motorcycle: 1974 Ducati 750GT
Lemmy’s estimate: $20,000
Sales price: $16,000
Grade: C

Teacher’s notes:

You pointed out those rearsets yourself and still thought this was worth $20 grand? Weak.

Motorcycle: 1972 Honda CB750 chopper
Lemmy’s estimate: $11,000
Sales price: $6,500
Grade: D-

Teacher’s notes:

It’s disappointing to see an otherwise decent (if uneven) performance marred by a problem we’ve discussed at length. Your obsession with ugly, ill-handling and downright dangerous choppers has been well documented. How many times have you been sent to detention for drawing choppers in your notebook instead of paying attention in Social Studies class? And yet your obsession still leads you to massively overestimate the value of a ratty old deathtrap. You have an appointment with the school counselor during second period on Tuesday.