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Why I collect

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Sometimes when speaking to non-collectors I shy away from talking about how much my hobby means to me. Maybe it's not wanting to seem like a nerd or something like that? However, most decent people can appreciate the value of having an outlset in this crazy world. My story of collecting has two parts: 1) when I was young I collected baseball and hockey cards because a few of my friends did, because I wanted to be a professional athlete when I "grew up", and because I found a certain kind of solace in the hobby. 2) When I was an adult, all finished university, one day scratching my head, I thought to myself: "wow, these last few years have been so hectic. What are my hobbies? What do I consider fun?" The last part is what led me to walk into a card store in West Edmonton Mall. I honestly had no thought about cards in many years and did not even know where to start. I hadn't followed my beloved Oilers very closely for a long time and I had no idea of how far the hobby had evolved. I walked into the store and based on my questions I think the owner seen me as some kind of sucker. To some extent at that point I was. When I was younger autographs, serial numbered cards, autographs, and single packs of cards that cost over $400.00 were simply unheard of. I has a proset/score kind of budget, whereas the richer kids could afford upper deck. That day I bought a single pack of Trilogy 2006-07 thinking for $20.00 this is going to be awesome. My hit was a Ryan Smyth Honourary Swatch. I was not completely disappointed but I was a little underwhelmed. I was not deterred. Over the next months I began to collect more regularly, leading up to right now where it is as big of a hobby as I have. Some months I spend more than I ought to but my wife suggests she prefers my collecting cards to some of her friends whose husbands and boyfriends go out partying all weekend. In collecting I find the same peace I did as a young man and in many ways with the stresses of my job (working with foster kids and families) it is a relatively 'easy on the brain release'. I have settled in on collecting certain players (Oilers & Slovakian born players - to honour my heritage) and always have a few side projects on the go to keep my overactive mind busy. Over the last five + years I have pulled/acquired many beautiful cards and have traded with a lot of great people (nearly 700 buyers and sellers have left me positive feedback on ebay and roughly 100 trades on various groups, often involving hundreds of dollars in cards). In fact, I have only had a handful of bad experiences in dealing with people. At the end of the day I sometimes feel like a big kid, perhaps creating for myself the childhood I always wanted - perhaps I am now among the ranks of the "Upper Deck Kids" that I was in school with, given what I tend to collect (the last few years I have preferred Trilogy and Luxury Suite)? I see myself continuing to collect cards so long as it is feasible to do so in my life. I will occassionally sell some but mostly I seek out cards that are of interest to me. So long as he is intersted in the hobby it will be my pleasure to leave a very respectable collection to my son Vaughn when he is older.

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog.

Updated 07-10-2012 at 03:39 PM by boomboom1978



  1. mzentko's Avatar
    nice story, thanks for sharing

    I kind of relate the hobby to book reading with my wife...if she reads for an hour to relax, I get the same relaxation and diverion by sorting some cards, or updating the want each his own!


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