Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Giving it away

I remember having Topps '71 and '72 cards. My mom was taking college courses at the local state university. There was a small five and dime store where I'd go and buy packs. I don't remember specific players, but I was a Red Sox fan. I remember setting the players in their positions on my bed and then using some method, either statistically or however I felt at the moment, I would recreate a game. I can still see the red box that I placed them in. Where that box is and the cards are, I have no clue.

In the early Eighties I was working with a friend who ran a piano and organ store. I'd go out with Tim on deliveries in our county. The county was vast with not many towns. We'd stop at the Seven-Eleven to grab a Dr. Pepper or Mountain Dew. I'd buy a pack or two of baseball cards to read and look at between towns.

I wasn't collecting then. Just something to pass the time. I went on other things in other places. The cards were forgotten in a closet in my parent's house.

Fast forward about 9 years. I returned home for my grandfather's funeral. My mom reminded me about the cards (probably wanting me to clean up stuff). I gathered them up, glanced through them and took them to Seth, the son of some good friends. He was into cards and soon saw what he had.

His dad, Brian, pulled me aside and said that I had given Seth three '84 Fleer Don Mattingly rookie cards. At that time they were book valued at about $70. Brian was concerned that I didn't know what I was doing. He was right. I didn't. But it wasn't about the value of the cards. It was about making Seth happy. Seeing his face when he was given all of those cards was very special. Brian insisted that I take back at least one of them. I still have it. It is selling on ebay for a few dollars up to $25. I don't regret letting Seth keep them.

Then there's about 15 years of collecting cards and stuff, going to card shows and shops, starting my Orel Hershiser collection. But, that's another story, another post.

Poking around the World Wide Internet, I found a guy in England who is trying to put together a 1980 Topps set. I have a few of those card. Actually, I have about 35 of the remaining 103 cards he's looking for. We exchanged emails and set up a trade. I keep waiting another day, because I find another box to look for Red Sox cards that he also collects.

I didn't have any expectations on what to receive in trade. He made an offer and I was clueless. He was kind enough to correct me and then sweetened the deal. After he's satisfied with what he gets and feels good about what he sent me, I'll share the details.

I wasn't doing anything with the '80s Topps cards that I have. That's why it was easy to give them away. I did stop for a moment when two cards on his list were Expos. I like the team and sort of wanted to keep the cards. But to me, John's desire to complete his set is more important than my sorting two cards out from one box and putting them in another box, not to see the light of day for several months.

Knowing that, I can give them away. I feel good. Now I need to get them in the mail.

1 comment:

  1. I've traded with John too. He's a good guy and very generous. He sent me some card that like you, he sorta wanted to keep, but he knew I was an A's fan and sent them too me thinking I would appreciate them more. I was really stoked to recieve them.