Wednesday was the CLF Auction – a longstanding tradition here at the University of Chicago Law School. CLF is the Chicago Law Foundation, a student group that raises money to provide grants to students interested in working in the public interest during their 2L summer. Every year, CLF runs the auction – which includes both a silent auction and a real live gavel-swinging, bidding-war-inducing live auction. In my day, Professor Epstein was the auctioneer, but these days Professor Baird does the honors. What gets auctioned off? You name it. We have donors who give amazing things like spa treatments at the Peninsula followed by dinner at Charlie Trotter's (wow), bottles of wine, tickets to various sporting events (good year for that, Bears being the NFC champs and all – and may I just say Go Bears!), Supreme Court Justice bobblehead dolls, and much, much more. But some of the most amazing and amusing offerings are the “experience” packages offered by professors and staff – home cooked gourmet meals accompanied by wonderful wines in professors’ homes, trips to Chicago music venues with professors as guides, weekend trips to vacation homes, professorial poker nights, meals out, trips to Wrigley and U.S. Cellular (Comiskey) Field, and many more fun ways for students to get to know professors and administrators outside the classroom, with the auction proceeds going to benefit the public interest. Of course, the students aren’t to be outdone, so they offered auction items as well – portraits done by accomplished student artists, baked goods, designated driver services for Bar Review, babysitting, dance lessons, lessons in how to express yourself (shall we say) colorfully in many languages by the LLM students, wingman service for evenings out. (Ah, that last one, I’m always amazed at how talented our students are, and how willing to give for the common good.) But seriously – this is a student-organized, student-run, student-supported event, and it is always a great success. My favorite item this year? We have a student who uses an assistance dog – you know, one with a big sign on his back that says “Do Not Pet” – who she offered up for an uninterrupted 10 minutes of petting to the lucky highest bidder. Whoever said money can’t buy love never paid to pet a yellow lab.