Tuesday, May 29, 2012

How it began

Ever since I started collecting, I've heard a lot of people recall the stories of their first cards.

No matter how long ago it was, the introduction to a hobby that has become so important to many of us is something to be remembered.

Trouble is, I can't. No matter how hard I try, nothing clicks.

I don't remember the first cards I ever bought.

My parents say I was about five or six when I first broke into the hobby. I don't remember much from all the way back then. I was still in tee-ball.

One of the earliest baseball card memories I have is making weekend trips to a special card shop, one that I previously mentioned on this blog.

I distinctly remember a little box full of vintage that was 80 percent off the marked price. (I was a fan of vintage from the start.)

A little sign hung above it saying that you had to be 18 or older to look through the box. I assume it was because they didn't want anyone pilfering cards. I had my dad look through it the first couple times, but the owners eventually let me do it alone after we'd been to the shop a few times.

The Ernie Banks card I mentioned in the post I previously linked to is definitely one of my earliest memories as a collector. I remember bringing it in to our parent-teacher conference in 3rd grade, as my teacher was a Cubs fan.

The above Rollie Fingers rookie has also been in my collection for a long, long time, but I doubt it was one of my first acquisitions. I don't know that I knew just how legendary a rookie card of a Hall of Famer like Fingers was as a kid.

I just liked the funny mustache that I saw in all the pictures of him.

Perhaps even older than my original "card shop finds" was the above card.

This experience is also something I've previously recounted. One of my dad's friends had recently moved in to a new home, and he found a little box of old baseball cards that was presumably left behind by the previous owner.

I couldn't have been more than seven or eight years old at the time.

Although John Goryl isn't exactly a "name" player, I've always appreciated this card. One thing that's persisted over the years is my love for the Cubs, and any old piece of Cubbie memorabilia has always been welcome in my collection.

Even with all that, I'm still at a loss for the first pieces of cardboard I ever owned. (Oddly enough, I can still remember the first Beanie Baby I ever got. The mind works in mysterious ways.)

I don't know whether I'm in the minority or majority here. It's awesome reading the tales of everyone else's "first cards", but I always find myself wishing I could remember mine.

While I deeply love all the cards currently in my collection, I'd really like to be able to trace it to those first ones.

I want to know how it all started.

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