Articles and commentary from Bert Lehman, the editor of Sports Collectors Digest.

‘Once it’s in your blood…’

There’s a saying that is said quite often to refer to things that somebody has a lot of interest in: “It’s in my blood.”

An offshoot of that saying, is, “Once it’s in your blood, you never get rid of it.”

These sayings have rung true for me over the past couple weeks in regards to sports collectibles. Being around sports collectibles again has rejuvenated my passion for the Hobby we all love. 

In the last issue of Sports Collectors Digest, I introduced myself and shared how I was initially drawn to the Hobby. I also shared how that interest first turned me into a collector of sports cards, and then game-used memorabilia.

What I didn’t tell you was that after I left SCD in 2007, I drifted away from the Hobby a bit. I focused on other things in my life, such as my new job. I also met a woman who I eventually married. We’ll be celebrating our five year anniversary in November.

During that time I have hemmed and hawed about selling the sports cards that I have collected since I was a kid. Since my main collecting was in the 1980s and 1990s, I know my collection doesn’t have a lot of value. That fact is one of the reasons that I put off selling the cards. I figured the memories I have from accumulating the collection are worth more to me than the amount of money I would receive if I sold them.

Fast forward to today. Since I’ve become the editor of SCD I have no thoughts of selling my collection. The thoughts have actually turned to pondering items I want to add to my collection.

The Nov. 11 issue of SCD contains an article by John McMurray about the action photography that was featured in the 1971 Topps baseball set. Today we take those types of action shots for granted, but back then action shots weren’t used as much.

What made that set more unique was the fact the cards featured black borders. Since it is easier to see wear along the edges and corners of these cards because of the black borders, it can be more difficult to find these cards in mint condition.

I don’t have a lot of 1971 Topps cards in my collection, but I do have a few. My favorite card from the set is the Thurman Munson card. I remember buying this card from a dealer through a magazine ad when I was in middle school or high school.

munson_1971_web

There were a few reasons I wanted to add this card to my collection. First, I love the action that the card features. Normally I’m not a fan of horizontal cards, but this one was special. Second, I remember reading about Munson when I was a kid and his unfortunate death.

My thought was if I was going to have a sports card collection, it had to include a Munson card.

After reading the article about the 1971 Topps set, and once again seeing the cards in the set, I have a feeling I’ll be adding more cards from that set to my own collection.

Those who sell autographs, as well as those who collect autographs will want to read the article in the same issue about the new law in California that will require dealers who sell to customers in California or operate in California, who sells autographed memorabilia for more than $5 to provide a certificate of authenticity (COA) for the item being sold, among a few other things dealers must do.

I can understand the rationale behind this law, but, unfortunately, I have a feeling that this is going to be another one of those laws passed by the government that will have “unintended consequences.”

 

 

 

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