About a year and a half ago I realized I was within striking distance of completing my 1971 Topps set. Though I’ve always been a card collector, in recent years I had been limited to buying the new Topps factory set. That was it. I wasn’t active, I wasn’t interested, and, while I loved my cards, I wasn’t involved with them emotionally.
Finishing off the ’71 set was great fun and I turned to 1970. I was making good headway, having a blast doing so, but nothing, and I mean nothing, brought me back to the joys of the hobby more than when Mark Armour and Chris Dial restarted the SABR Baseball Cards Committee and a blog.
I met Mark once, two years ago at the SABR convention in Chicago, where I was presenting and pushing Split Season. (I also wrote an Earl Williams bio for the SABR Bioproject, but that was years ago and I bet Mark doesn’t remember that.) Mark and I started talking about how to elevate the new cards committee, find writers, start a Twitter account, and so on. We also started working on a few card sets together. Instant buddies!
I tend to write when I need to write and, since I’m not working on a book right now, writing isn’t tops on my list. I remember hearing that Ringo never practices; he plays when he has to. That’s my approach to writing, but the cards blog is compelling to me. I’ve written a bunch of posts and most aren’t about cards, they’re about memories and life, with cards as vehicle to tell the story. It’s a reality of mine that cards have been a constant presence in my life and being back into cards, deeply, has made me so very happy.
The SABR convention is starting tomorrow. I couldn’t fit the entire multi-day event into my schedule, but there was no way I was going to miss the Baseball Cards Committee meeting on Saturday and a chance to hang out with Mark and many others who I’ve met these last few months via the blog and Twitter. I’ve never been someone to reach out to trade cards and share with strangers, but, again, through the cards committee, I’ve virtually met a lot of kindred spirits, some who I’ll meet for real in a few days.
So I owe a huge thank you and much gratitude to Mark and Chris for jump-starting my dead card collecting battery and to all those who read, comment, share and collect. We’re all one big happy family.