Wednesday, January 14, 2015
40 years ago I found my life's work
A week or so ago I realized that it has been 40 years since the release of the 1975 Topps set. Forty years since I first collected a baseball card set. Forty years since I kept those cards and didn't throw them away at season's end. Forty years of the greatest set ever created during a young boy's first year of buying packs.
I've started to see a little bit of mention of this particular anniversary here and there. One of those online baseball writers with a lot of followers showcased an image of a 1975 Topps rack pack (with George Brett as one of the players because, of course, the only two people in the '75 Topps set were Brett and Yount) and said "remember these?" like we were supposed tax our brains straining to retrieve lost images of these colorful cardboard squares from back during our -- heh, we were so childish then -- kid days.
OF COURSE I REMEMBER THEM YOU TWIT! NOT A DAY GOES BY THAT I DON'T THINK OF THEM!
Sorry, it's just that it bothers me when something that I found and find so meaningful is completely forgotten or regarded as trivial kid stuff.
Forty years ago, my collecting habits were formed and probably some life lessons, too. The value of hobbies, for instance. The value of money. Sticking to a goal. Knowledge of and respect for history. A vehicle for forming relationships, in the schoolyard and later in the collecting community.
I owe it all to one of the most memorable, iconic baseball card sets ever issued.
When I wrote the 1975 Topps (it's far out, man) blog, I would periodically feature some of the cards that I kept from that first year of collecting. All of those original '75s showed the love and time I devoted to collecting that first year.
I have 61 cards left from that year of collecting 40 years ago. Their sharp-corner days disappeared somewhere around July of 1975. Yet, they're still in my collection.
They are the strongest connection I have to my first year of collecting, and I will keep them forever. But it occurs to me that after I'm gone their meaning will go with me. Who will see these particular cards/want these particular cards again?
So I am going to create a page on this blog that features just these cards -- the first cards I ever pulled from packs 40 years ago. These cards deserve immortality -- the kind of immortality that future collectors can see.
Here are those cards now:
That's all of them in their creased-scuffed-nonexistent cornered glory.
Sorry the scans are crooked, but let's face it, a 9-year-old boy doesn't care about making things line up.
I also have 1975 minis that I bought or traded for that first year, too. I may add those to the page, as well.
I should have the page up Friday or Saturday
That way future generations -- that is if the internet is still around -- can see exactly what a young night owl treasured in the mid-1970s.