View Full Version : CONTEST ENTRY - What is a Super Collector Ė Iím a Super Collector Lite

11-25-2010, 07:20 PM
What is a Super Collector Ė Iím a Super Collector Lite

Back in the 70ís, 80ís and 90ís, I was what was I considered a Super Collector. I had most of the cards of my favorite players. I had Walter Paytonís rookie card and most of his other cards. When Topps was the only game in town, it was easy. Life was good. You went and bought packs for 15 cents a pack at Shop and Go (70ís) and you collected until you found what you were looking for. If you didnít get it, you bought more packs or you traded your buddy for it. If you were really lucky, your Mom would buy a box of Twinkies. If I knew Mom was going to the store, Iíd have to go with her so I could see who was on the back panel. Of course, while we were at the store, weíd have to get a box of cereal too (a kidís gotta eat, right?). ďLet me pick MomĒ, Iíd pleaÖand the Frosted Flakes (Kelloggís 3D cards) would be my breakfast for the next few days until I could pull that card out of the box Ė only if I could beat my brother to it (but thatís another story). Thatís how Super Collecting was back in the day, as I knew it. Life was good.

Life was different in the 20th century. We simply collected what we liked and tried to get as much as we could. I was fortunate enough to work for a card dealer at shows and he paid us by the hour, which we traded for individual cards or packs. It was a simple solutionÖwe worked for cards and we were paid well. Life was really good.

Then thatís when it happened. Somewhere in the 21st century, card collecting became about a different kind of collecting and a different type of collector. By todayís standards, Iím not a super collector at all. Today, I will see a 20 year old kid have 90% of the base of one player, 5 of his 1 of 1ís, and 50% of the autos and game used cards for that player. ďHe is only 20 years old and I am a 44 year old with a job!Ē, I say to myself. ďHow in the world could he have passed me up? And what in the world is a super-duper-refractoid-glossy-parallel (only 5 made) that I have to find of my favorite player and how did this 20 year old kid get one?Ē At this point, I simply tell myself that I cannot compete and I will never grace the pages of Tuff Stuff or Beckett or ever be considered for Super Collector status in SCF. Life was no longer good.

But, as a collector, I also considered myself to be somewhat scrappy. I think most Super Collectors have learned this at some point in their super-collecting lives. I had to use my resources. I told myself that anyone could buy all the cards they wanted if they had the money. Whereís the fun in that (although, I do have to admit that the thought is pretty good). Iíd have to find other ways to collect those of my favorite players. Being of little means, Iíd have to be creative and this is what truly makes a Super Collector.

Most of us trade cards on sites like SCF. You have it and I want it, so letís swap. There was a time before the internet that trading became a lost art. However, the information highway opened doors for the Super Collector that I didnít have when I was young. It was the only way that to get rid of the rare 1 of 1 card of a little known player. Life was good again.

I think selling cards is also kind of a lost art to the non-Super Collector. Not everyone will pay full book on an $80 card. Many people will buy such cards on places like eBay. However, how many actually sell? Itís easy to sell a $100 card on eBay (even if only to get $20 for it). I could then take that $20 cash and buy the $80 card on the same site that I really wanted. This isnít a new concept. However, I think kids donít always realize that you have to give up something to get something. I have become pretty good at ďtaking someone elseís junk and turning it into my own personal gold. This is the ďbeing resourcefulĒ that Iím talking about. To get that same $80 card, you sometimes have to sell a popular $10 card for $5-6, where you can then pay $5-6 for a $20 card that is #íd/50. Then I trade that $20 card to someone who really wants it and I get a $25 card in return. I continue the process until I get the $80 card that I wanted in the first place. It might take several trades to get there, but in the end, I get it. Not only is it good collecting (where everyone is happy, but you get what you want in the end. Thatís what makes a Super Collector.

What also is right about the formula is that this formula not only makes good trading, but itís just good business and a good life lesson. You take a little money and you turn it into something bigger. You become resourceful.

For those of you who look to become a Super Collector, look to start small. Become a Super Collector Lite first. Donít be afraid to give up cards and donít be afraid to make trades, even if they are smaller trades. Even if you donít get there, it is okay. Itís all about the climb (hey, donít knock me because Iím quoting Miley Cyrus Ė I said it before she did!).

Iíll never reach the levels of some of the guys here. But in my local circle, Iím doing pretty good as a Super Collector Lite. Life is good.

11-27-2010, 05:12 AM
Good stuff! Thanks for the entry here is the edited and published version:http://www.sportscardforum.com/articles/2010/11/what-is-a-super-collector-im-a-super-collector-lite/

Will send the CC your way now :)