I've written about my Dodgers dupes box a few times. It's one of those old Xerox boxes, about 18 inches-by-24 inches, which probably originally contained maybe twenty, 500-count packages of copier paper.
I've had it since the late 1980s and it now contains thousands of Dodger dupes. The first few years of this blog, I was pretty good at organizing it by year, set and player. Inside the box there are rows and rows of cards. And then when I couldn't fit anymore in, I stacked rows and rows on top of the rows and rows.
Probably a couple of years ago I gave up on further organizing -- although I always intend to pick it back up again. There are now six very large stacks of Dodger dupes on top of the box. There really should be a seventh stack, but there's not enough room. So the six stacks overflow on top of each other, and there are cards stuck between the box and the desk or the box and the wall, while other cards have fallen to the floor and are now hidden away just waiting to be discovered again.
I tell myself I'm going to get rid of some of these cards (yes, I know there are Dodger fans I can trade them to, but really do they want 36 1990 Donruss Eddie Murrays?). And maybe one day I will, but there's something that's holding me back.
A couple of weeks ago I was going through a binder that features 2003 Dodgers. It hit me as I was turning the pages that I didn't see the 2003 Topps Hideo Nomo card. This is quite a memorable card of Nomo's famed pitching wind-up, which I've shown on the blog before. The thought of losing that card was almost crushing.
I knew I had the card at one time but where was it? I decided it was time to update all my Dodger binders and when I got to 2003 Topps, maybe I'd find it tucked behind another card (it happens periodically).
But I didn't find the Nomo tucked away. So it was off to the dupes box.
I was dreading having to open the box and search through the rows to find where 2003 Topps was. But before I could open the box, I had to go through the stacks on top of the box. Toward the end of the fifth stack, I found the card I was looking for:
What a relief. I was happy to find it and also happy that the dupes pile had produced it for me. "This is why I keep you guys!" I said to myself, trying to justify my habits.
I set the Nomo card on the desk and proceed to return the stacks back to the top of the box.
Like I said, the stacks are high and it's clumsy putting them back, especially with all the slick, shiny, slidey cards in the stacks. As I was moving one of the stacks, it exploded in my hands. Some of the cards jumped to the right and knocked over one of the other stacks that I hadn't yet transported.
As that stack caved in, a wave of cards slid toward me and revealed this card:
I chuckled to myself.
"Well, dupes box, you've won yourself another reprieve. I won't be getting rid of any card anytime soon if you go above and beyond like that."
I guess this is why we hoard.