By Matthew Ferreira aka Ferrari5515

Card collecting is hard. Well for me. Because I feel it’s harder to be a card collector when you’re my age. By my age I mean I’m 15. I feel like I’m a small fish in a big pool of sharks. Whenever I feel like I know what I’m doing in card collecting, or if I think I’m starting to grow a bigger collection, someone proves me wrong by showing me up. I also notice that there aren’t a lot of kids out there like me…People that are my age and try to collect cards that are somewhat rare, I guess.


I think this is because it’s very difficult for teens to collect cards. Let me explain. I sure don’t have the money to buy a box of Triple Threads or National Treasures. And my parents aren’t going to buy me a box of stuff that expensive, either. That’s because what they see in baseball cards isn’t what I see. I see the possibility of pulling a Tim Lincecum one of one or a Blake Griffin quad patch auto. All they see is a box of cardboard. I explain to them that this stuff can be worth a lot of money, but then they say we’re spending money for it, so doesn’t that cancel out? So buying boxes is out of the question.


Now if I was an adult, I feel things would be different. I would buy a box every now and then, and see if I could get lucky. But, if I bought a box, then I could trade, and if I could trade, then I would be getting newer and cooler cards each time. And that’s exciting, to me at least. And then I could buy more packs and boxes and add to my inventory, and then I’d be set… But I’m not an adult, so once again, I can’t do that.


So, I turn to TTM. I have the utmost appreciation for TTM because of these situations. The fact that players and coaches take time out of their days to read a letter I wrote to them and send something back to me makes me feel good. Plus, it’s not like I have to pay really any money for it either. Which is also good! And what I also like is that almost all players do it. Some for free, some for a small donation. But they all sign. This option I feel is just as good as opening a box of whatever type of cards or trading anything, but it might even feel a little more special.


Now let me take you back to what it would be like if I was an adult. I would be trading, buying packs and boxes, AND TTMing. Now that is something I would like to do. But once again, I can’t. They have the money to buy this stuff, and they have the ability to drive to a card store and get whatever they want. But I don’t have that ability. I don’t have a car, I don’t have the money, I don’t have any of the stuff that they have. All I have is some base cards, some index cards, some stamps, a couple of envelopes, and a pen. So what do you think I should do?


At this point of the article, I must say I’m struggling to get to that 700 word minimum, but let me just try to squeeze one of those motivational teen to teen speeches in about card collecting. Some teens think that card collecting isn’t very cool or there is no point. I understand why they think that. Who wants to have a ton of rectangles with guys on them stacked in a pile in your room? But if you are a sports fan, then I truly do recommend the hobby. Being a new teen card collector myself, I do remember thinking the same thing. But the thing that changed my mind was the thought that you could own an autograph from your favorite player by just sending out a card and letter. You could own an autograph from your favorite player by buying a box of cards. Or you could own an autograph of your favorite player by making a trade by finding an owner on one of these forums. You just got to be lucky.