I've spent the last few days driving back and forth from the hospital where my dad is. He has a host of health issues, many of which were ignored for years, that basically came to the surface once my mom had passed. The news isn't good and, really, after all that's gone on, I've accepted that.
I don't want to dwell on that here though.
Even though just about every holiday since Labor Day has come and gone with very little meaning or ritual, I did find a small amount of joy yesterday on Memorial Day (of all days, right?). After leaving the hospital, I took a trip to the main shopping drag in the Southern Tier to hit the Barnes & Noble.
I was looking for the June/July issue of Beckett Vintage Collector, which contains my article on the 1975 Topps mini set. I didn't expect to find it because I've had more success finding the magazine at the B&N's in Syracuse. But after some pained scanning of the large magazine display, I suddenly saw it, a young Tom Seaver and Nolan Ryan looking back at me, as the cover story is on the 1969 Mets.
I eagerly grabbed three copies and then excitedly texted the loved ones.
It is SO COOL.
My first story in the magazine was cool as well, because it was the first and on one of my favorite sets, the '76 SSPC "Pure Card" set. But while that was "Pure Fun," as the article title said, this article is something else all together.
The '75 Topps mini set, as you know, is my all-time favorite set. To be able to write about it, get paid for it, and then see it displayed on magazine racks around the country is the greatest honor. How am I so privileged?
The story layout sums up my feelings for the set as well. It's a super colorful design, because '75 was a super colorful set. I love the treatment of the type and all the appropriate colors. It's just gorgeous. It also features my cards.
I took a personal approach to the article, just because it's the only way I could write about the set that appeared during my very first year of collecting. I didn't expect it to turn out very well. But apparently Beckett liked it as Mike Payne, the editorial director, has told me that it's also appearing in the July issue of Beckett's baseball magazine.
This is the kind of stuff I wish I could tell my mom and dad. They no doubt wouldn't be able to fully appreciate it, only that their son was so excited. But that's why you tell mom and dad.
But I'm not dwelling on that either. I want to focus instead on how pleased I was yesterday.
No matter what's going on in life, this hobby can lift you up.