Raising your hand is a universal way of saying you would like to be heard. When you add in money and items of value, that raised hand is a universal way of saying, “Mine.”

The third annual George Mason University GBAY auction drew a large crowd of faculty and students Thursday night fand earned XXXX for Mason’s scholarship fund.  At the time of this printing, the exact amount raised could not be obtained.

In addition to the money raised through the auction, all proceeds from Dippin’ Dots ice cream sales during the event went to the scholarship fund.

Items up for bid ranged from autographed Mason sports memorabilia to lunch with President Alan Merten.

The lunch with Merten sparked a bidding war that ended with a final bid of $150 from junior psychology major Alex Thomas.

“I’m really pumped,” Thomas said. “One of my friends and I talked about it and we got one other person to chip in, so it’s only $50 a piece. Besides, it’s lunch with the president who’s done so much for the school over the past 18 years.”

One student — a member of Mason’s crew of green-and-gold-morph-suit-wearing G-Men who frequent Mason basketball games — was visibly upset by not winning the lunch with Merten.

“I was devastated,” said G-Man Papa Giorgio, a freshman economics major. “I really thought we’d get some good air time with President Merten before he left.”

Papa Giorgio did not go home empty-handed — his later bXXX-bid secured a package of Mason basketball paraphernalia that included bobble head figurines of all five of the starters from the 2006 Final Four run.

“I’m still really pumped to get the Merten package [the bobble heads],” Papa Giorgio said. “Anything to support Mason and the Patriots.”

Students’ love for Patriots basketball runs deep. Last year, one of the most popular items up for bid was a banner from the 2006 Final Four tournament that went to junior government major Alex Williams, who was back for more this year.

“This year, I really want the lunch with Paul Hewitt,” Williams said. “I love basketball. I love Mason basketball. It means a lot to me. That’s why I bid so much last time.”

The auction wasn’t all about basketball. Every year since GBAY’s inception, students have been able to bid for the right to create and name an original smoothie, an original burger and now, for the first time, an original pizza. If the item proves popular enough, it becomes a permanent item on the menu at Pilot House. The right to name a burger at the Rathskeller sold for just $65 this year, as opposed to last year when it was auctioned off for $215.

“We’re going to call it the Saucy Drag Queen, aka the SDQ” said MaryAnn Vega, a sophomore art history major. “It’s going to be a flavor bomb — cheese in the patty, ham on top, with bacon on top of that and so much more.”

Those who showed up early heard Mason’s own GMUnit perform “Good Life” by One Republic and “Viva La Vida” by Coldplay. The all male a cappella group serenaded the audience, enticing participants to bid for the chance to have them sing for an unsuspecting friend at a time and place of the bidder’s choosing.

In addition to the Mason-centric items up for bid, several businesses from Washington, D.C., and the surrounding area donated items or services. Securing these items for the auction takes time and planning.

“First, we make a letter that we send out to businesses in the D.C. tri-state area,” said Anna Haber, a junior accounting major. “If we don’t hear back from them, we try to show our faces and approach the businesses in person or follow up with phone calls.”

Even those who came to GBAY but didn’t notch a successful bid left with something.

All ticket holders received a goody bag containing an auction paddle, various freebies and one of the popular Mason rubber duckies.

With this year’s GBAY over, sights are already on next year’s.

“We have big plans for next year, too,” Haber said. “We’re getting more items, bigger items and hopefully getting even more people to come out next year.”