In the 2009 photo essay, I mentioned some niche collectors like Vintage Hockey guy, The Ring Man, Uncut Sheets guy, Unopened Boxes guy and so on. Here's another one: The Boxing Collector. I don't understand why more collectors don't look for these niches/gimmicks instead of being the 7,200th guy who thought it was a good idea to sell vintage baseball cards. Why there isn't a killer NBA Collector has to be one of the great mysteries of the NSCC every year. I'm consistently perplexed.
Here's another good collecting gimmick: Just call yourself "Uncle Dick." That works for casinos, card collecting, porn, wrestling, a limousine business really it doesn't matter what you're doing. He was my favorite 2011 collector, on the heels of
Rich Altman, my favorite collector from 2010. Folks, Rich Altman is buying dead Hall of Famers. Just bring him the corpses and he'll take it from there.
Every year at the convention, there's at least one item that makes me say, "Huh?" This year, there were three. The first: something like 200 authentic sleeveless A's jerseys from the Early Reggie Jackson era. I can't think of a single reason why you'd want one of these unless you were producing a rom-com in which Katherine Heigl lived in the Bay Area and threw on one of Ryan Reynolds' favorite throwback A's jerseys to make him eggs after she moved in with him because they got married after she was nearly deported, only they ended up falling in love, and hot damn, did Katherine look sexy in that A's jersey! Other than that I'm at a loss.
What a conundrum. On the one hand, team-issued Brewers suitcases from the '70s or '80s! On the other hand, no wheels! How would you use them? Just to store stuff? I don't know what would have happened had these been team-issued Red Sox suitcases from the Lynn/Rice era, and frankly, I hope I never find out.
Our third "Huh?" item: A 40-inch Red Sox statue dating from the 1950s. It cost about as much as a new 50-inch Panasonic plasma but good golly was it spectacular. I didn't seriously consider buying it only because my lunatic son would have ended up fighting it or something.