By the time the 1984 All-Star Game hit San Francisco – my hometown – I missed the entire festivities. I was in between my freshman and sophomore years in college, and had been forced to spend the entire summer working at Disneyland. Everyone in my family was obligated to work at the “Happiest Place on Earth” because my uncle, who was there when the place opened, was still there and made it a family commitment. Consequently, I missed the All-Star Game. What I didn’t realize until some months later was how involved my dad was in those festivities.
At some point after we moved to San Francisco from Los Angeles, he got a job selling air time for KOFY-AM, the Spanish-language radio station, that broadcast Giants games. Throughout my later elementary school and high school years, we had access to Giants games basically whenever we wanted. I remember visiting my dad’s office to beg for tickets, and he would open the drawer, and sure enough, there were stacks of tickets. Pure gold, I tell you!
Over the years my dad developed a good relationship with the Giants front office staff, the communications people, I imagine. I hadn’t known what all he did, especially when the Giants got the 1984 All-Star game, and what kind of contribution he made to the event. The next time I saw him, maybe around Thanksgiving, he showed me the cool plaque the Giants gave him, that featured their logo, the All-Star Game logo and a nice shot of the crowd. He also gave me a pack of cards. It was a 1984 Mother’s Cookies San Francisco Giants All Time All Stars pack that included 20 trading cards out of a 28-card set. He gave me one pack, while keeping two packs for himself. He never said where he got them, but I took my pack without question, quickly flipping through my treasures.
The set included Willie Mays, Willie McCovey, Juan Marichal, Orlando Cepeda, and John Montefusco, among other Giants greats. Card 28 featured the 1984 All-Star Game logo. The 21st card in my pack invited you to send away for the eight cards, though as they indicate, “If you would like to have 8 additional trading cards (although most probably NOT the exact eight needed to complete your set due to random selection).” Somehow I doubted I would get the exact cards I needed.
Over the years, I would flip through the cards, reminiscing about the players I saw play back in the late 1970s and early 1980s: Jack Clark, Gary Lavelle, Vida Blue, Ed Whitson, Darrell Evans and of course, the Count. A decade ago, when my dad passed away, I inherited the plaque and his two packs of 1984 Mother’s Cookies cards. And wouldn’t you know it … he was missing the same cards I was missing! And it’s too late to mail in to Mother’s!