Monday, September 1, 2008

A Lesson, No Doubt About It

This weekend was the big weekend for card collectors in LA. On Saturday, at Hollywood Park Casino, Tristar/Naxcom Sportsbuy had their annual big show for the area. It had around 200 tables and some very admirable autograph guests. I went last year and had a really good time, so I decided it was worth another go, if not just for the story to write about here.

Funny enough, going to the show on Sunday was kind of an afterthought, as I didnt expect a break from wedding planning at all. Luckily for me, the planets alligned, the woman had things to do, and all was right for me to make the 30 minute trek. All was not fun and games, however, as I had VERY little money to spend, a condition not suggested for a huge show. It was a similar situation last year, but I went about my approach differently this time around. Instead of going with the expectation of finding something awesome, having to exhaust the bank account, and really coming away feeling empty, I went with the opposite expectations. My goal this time was to see what there was, and not make any rash decisions because everything at the show would be based on those hat drawn prices I had written so much about here.

I was right, everything was based on that unrealistic pricing agent, and I saw it from the moment I stepped in the door and saw Beckett set up right in front. Yet, besides all this foul territory, I had things that I knew some people would want (like my Sweet Spot Peterson Autos), to hopefully offset the price hike from idiot dealers going by the Satanist Manifesto Of Card Pricing.

Here is how it went down:

Of all the 200 tables there, I would say 70 percent of the dealers were solely dealing in graded vintage cards. You could go to their tables and marvel in the 52 Mantles they had in SGC 85 and above. It was amazing. But, I wasnt looking for vintage, not my thing. So, that left around 30 percent of people dealing in stuff that was relevant to what I like. Of those 30 percent, 25 percent dealt in baseball only, meaning my Petersons were irrelevant, and I wasnt looking for more baseball stuff anyways. That left a mere 5 percent of the tables there that had modern and high end football for me to go after. I also saw that only 2 tables had Peterson stuff for sale, making things difficult if I wanted something, but good for my aching wallet.

The first guy I wanted had a multitude of awesome cards, a fucking multitude. I would die a happy man with his collection, definitely. He had Exquisites, SPAs, everything, and none of it was graded - a very common thing at the show, different from last year in the modern and high end football. Even better was that he had an ENTIRE case of rare and awesome Peterson stuff. He had the Exquisite base RC patch auto priced at a whopping $3000, but I didnt have the money for that anyways. However, it did make me question how he arrived at a price that was DOUBLE what was on eBay. Interesting...

Either way, I showed him my stuff to trade after seeing a few things I liked, but he passed as soon as I took it out of my cargo pocket. Pretty disheartening to say the least, but I picked up my head and moved on. The other table had cards that I kind of wanted, but not anything that I wanted more than the Sweet Spot Autos I had. Either way, I showed him my stuff, thinking I might get a 1 for 1 deal on a Peterson Trilogy auto that I liked because of the sweet pic on the card, but he said he wasnt that interested as he hadnt had anyone ask about any of his high end cards all show. He did like the sweet spots A LOT, and offered me cash, which suprised me considering his previous turn down of the 1 for 1 trade. It was considerably less than I had into the stuff I was selling, but I saw it was enough to buy one of the Petersons from the other guy, and still have a ton to spend on something else from the show. So I took the deal, and here is the lesson I learned - why worry about money and value when you can get something you have been looking for forever? I had preached that all over SCU with my posts on the fuckheads who trade by book value, but I had never TRULY put it into practice.

Yet, after walking out of the show minus my Peterson Sweet Spots, but with a Peterson I liked much more than the two I traded, plus a Mauer and an AMAZING Maroney, I thought it was a great success despite losing two expensive cards for less than what I had invested. So guys, especially you idiots who quote the Beckett like its an Anchorman monologue, realize its not all about worth, its about having something you like. Otherwise, why should I even bother with all this shit?

Besides, after all of my waffling about selling two cards I didnt really like all that much, I had gotten enough money out of the deal to get my cards AND to take the fiancee to a steak dinner. You gotta love that.


  1. When you were at the show did your blog ever come up? I'm curious if they may have heard of it, or recognize you as an anti-Beckett crusader.

  2. No, I wasnt really that vocal in my time there.