View Full Version : The Joys of Collecting - Contest Entry

07-27-2010, 06:48 AM
This hobby of ours has a lot to offer; the thrill of the chase when collecting cards, the addictive feeling of gambling on a high end box of wax, the chance to test your negotiating skills when trying to conclude a trade but what I prefer without a doubt is the incomparable community feeling which can be found amongst us collectors. Sure, there are some bad eggs, but generally speaking, the collecting masses are nice and helpful.

When I first started collecting as a kid, it was very much a solitary passion. None of my friends really caught the collecting bug so I was left to my own devices. Today however, it is different. It doesn't matter if no one collects near you, the internet is there! You can easily get online and find people to share your passion with. Online collecting offers so many upsides; cheaper prices on product, possibility to trade with fellow collectors and possibility to get cards to and from anywhere in the world.

In 2007, I cracked my first packs in over 10 years and being isolated in England, I decided to look into possible sports cards website. I was astonished to find sportscardforum.com and I must admit that it felt like home right away. Three years later, SCF is still the site I visit the most often online. I've made over 400 successful trades and I've “met” a huge amount of collectors. They are all different; they can be passionate about their team or their favorite player but they can also be die-hard rookie collectors. As time passed, I learned about all these people and now when I bust some packs more often than not I know exactly who will be interested in my latest pull. For instance, when one of my boxes of Ultimate Collection hockey revealed a Jonas Gustavsson rookie card numbered to just 99 copies, I sent a PM to one of the most dedicated collectors I know; Mike Cole. We have yet to strike a deal but even if we can't I will at least be happy to say that I tried to send the card in the right collection. I'm happy to say that it also works both ways, when people pull cards of my two personal collection guys (Patrick Roy and Martin Brodeur) they send me a private message right away, I do not even have to look through the box breaks forum anymore!

It doesn't stop at online dealing though, good reports established online can often turn into easy in person dealing. In the Summer of 2009, I made my way to the National Sports Collector convention in Cleveland. There I met quite a few members from SCF (mikesilvia, enigma, captngeetch, scottkoz20, doniceage and puckfrmcali to name a few) and I was able to not only conclude a few deals in person but also enjoy one of the biggest card show in good company. We all felt like kids in a candy store at the Convention and it was brilliant to have people to share that feeling with. Outside of the show hours we also enjoyed some activities (a Cleveland Indians game, the Rock'n'Roll Hall of Fame and a great session of pack wars) and took the time to get to know each other better, it was a pleasure to get know Scott's wife and little girl she was a little cutie!

Fast forward to this summer and during my usual holiday in Québec, I decided to drop by on one of our member's (bossy'scards) card shop. If it hadn't been for SCF I wouldn't have know to visit Chris' excellent store and I would not be flying back home today with plenty of personal collection goodies. This visit to Québec also allowed me to make an in person trade with Annie who is another member of the site. One thing lead to another, and before I knew it we were recording a video break of Ultimate Collection hockey. Taking the high end gamble on your own is one thing but sharing the gamble with someone else is even more fun! So much so that we did another video break the following week! Of course, the results can't always be excellent but at least you have someone to share the highs and the lows with.

In closing, if you are a collector get involved in your trading community, it will be worth the effort. Take the time to notice who also collects in your area (much like the Sabres Mafia members found themselves on SCF), cultivate trading relationship (it is great to deal on numerous occasion with some people that you know you can trust) and for the most daring; meet your fellow collectors in person this is where there is the most fun to be had!

07-27-2010, 04:37 PM
Got it up - thanks!