I love the Schaumburg show for the mere fact that it is the closest show to home. I love being able to get there in just 20 minutes. Normally I drive anywhere from 45 minutes to two hours to get to a show. I had a very pleasant short drive on Sunday morning.
We had beautiful weather the day before at the Oak Creek show, where temperatures were in the upper 60's. Temps took a nose dive Sunday, throw in some wind and it was cold and nasty.
Cars were lined up in front of the hotel when I arrived so I parked by a side door. I brought out the same stuff from yesterday in Oak Creek and was able to get my six display cases and one bin loaded into the hotel in just one trip.
I saw that Lou was in my spot from last month. It is always good to see Lou, his son and Don. Lou already had customers at his tables when I arrived at 8 a.m. Joe had me along the northern wall in the main room. Unlike other dealers that I regularly complain about, I could care less where the promoter places me in the room. I just want a spot to set up.
This spot was nice because I had much more space behind my tables than I do in the hallway. Only drawback is the spot was in front of some doors and I do not like people walking behind my tables because I have been a victim of theft. I want everyone in front of me so I can keep an eye on them.
I didn't realize it but the dealer across from me was set up with his kid who was about 12 or 13 years old. The kid kept coming behind my tables to use the door. On his third attempt, I barked at him that this was my space and he needed to keep out. When I realized he was set up across from me with his dad, I was surprised his dad did not come by and tell me to buzz off.
He stopped coming behind my tables but I heard people tugging at the locked doors all day long. Another issue arose with my chairs. Promoter Joe is pretty good about placing two chairs behind every table. I had two tables so I should have had four chairs but there were only two when I arrived. I am pretty sure one of the other dealers swiped two of my chairs.
Later, I watched one dealer grab a chair located down from my tables which had me worried that the chair I placed next to my cheapy box was going to get swiped. There are always customers that have health issues and really need a chair, so I like to provide them with one. I moved the cheapy box chair closer to my tables to ward off thieves. Wouldn't you know it, someone swiped the chair right from under my nose. I don't know when they could have done it. Got me thinking that a whole lot of stuff could have been swiped while I was standing there if I did not notice the chair walk away. Luckily, no one needed the chair for the rest of the day because I only had one left and my fat behind was firmly planted on it. Thankfully, nothing else was swiped.
Real nice crowd at this show. This might have been the largest crowd I have ever seen at the Schaumburg show. Unfortunately, not a whole lot of vintage collectors. I had placed out six display cases like yesterday but changed it up a bit and put out my complete sets and starter lots in one of them. In another, I put out my graded cards, which I did not have out yesterday in Oak Creek. The four other cases had my duplicate star cards. I kept the oversized pre-War cards and Exhibits in the bin. I was able to get out the cheapy box but did not have enough space for the publications.
Surprisingly, I did not sell one graded card. In the past at this show, many customers have told me that they largely collect graded. Where were they today? I sold a few of the duplicate star cards. One guy purchased my 1964 and 1965 Philadelphia Mike Ditka cards. A father and son team that I regularly see at this show and at Orland purchased a stack of stuff including a 1972 Topps Joe Namath and a 1963 Fleer Ron Santo.
It is always great to see long-time customer Randy who purchased a bunch of cards out of my cheapy box. Thanks Randy! Several other guys found cards in the cheapy box. A new customer purchased my 1964 Topps Lou Brock. My old friend Chuck L. stopped by and purchased a few cards. Thanks Chuck!
The talkative guy from last month was disappointed I did not have the binders. I think if I had brought out the binders, he would have sat down and told me his life story again. He did find time to tell me a few stories about some guys in the autograph collecting world who have pissed him off. He is so angry at some of these guys that he has instructed his son to not sell any of his collection to these guys after he dies. He is kind of hard to follow. I really don't know what he is talking about most of the time. He is just another character that comes with the territory. You gotta wonder if some of these guys have a kill list at home. I always chat with these nutters to make sure I don't end up on that kill list.
While I am talking about some of the annoying characters we have to deal with at the card shows, one of the worst are the guys I call Mr. I Got. These guys never buy a thing and demand your attention while they go through your display case and point out cards and say "I got this one." This particular Mr. I Got, comes to my Oak Creek show, Schaumburg, and Orland. That is three times every month I have to deal with him pointing out cards and saying, "I got this one." I don't see how he can have any cards when I have never seen him purchase a card.
Also, unless he is sitting on a set of 1933 Goudeys, I am not impressed that he has a 1969 Topps Tom Seaver. Also the cards I brought out last weekend are all cards that I have in multiples. Do you want to hear what I got? I have a few cards as well! I am so bummed I have to see Mr. I Got next week in Orland. Someone make this guy go away!!
Thankfully, quite a few folks, who I really like, stopped by to chat like T.J., Mike Slinkman and Doreen. These folks brighten my day.
Speaking of brightening my day, my young friend from my hometown who I met at this show sometime last year was in a really chipper mood. He kind of sing-songed a "hello" to me as we passed on the stairwell when I went up to the faux Starbucks for coffee. Later he came over and told me his dad was there and asked that I tell his dad that this is a great hobby and that he is not wasting his time.
Oh, I felt a little pang there. Sucks having a non-supportive father who thinks your interests are a waste of time. I told him that my dad was the same way when I was his age. I would have to beg and beg my dad to take me to a show. When he would finally relent, he would always ask me if I was ready to leave after being at the show for just 10 minutes. Once we did leave, he would then take me to his office in Downtown Chicago and I would have to sit there all afternoon while he worked -- it totally sucked.
At least my little friend has a wonderful and supportive mother who takes him all over for shows and patiently sits there with him all day. My mother never took me to a show. She did not like to drive. Later in the show, the little guy brought his dad over and I explained to his dad that his little boy was awesome and that he is involved in a great hobby.
The dad and I had some things in common. We are both lawyers. He knows my cousin Rich, who is also a lawyer. The dad said he played softball with Rich for years. The dad also knew my own dad, who is a judge on the Illinois Appellate Court. Hopefully, the dad won't be so hard on the little guy in the future and let him enjoy his hobby. Such a great kid!
Speaking of kids, there were a TON of kids at this show. I have not seen this many kids at a show in years. I loved watching them run from table to table, dealing, trading, buying cards, showing off their cards to each other and having fun -- so cool!
There were a ton of kids at my neighbor's table all day long. This guy deals in modern. A real nice guy who said he was at my Oak Creek show the day before. He must be about 25 years old or so. He was nice and patient with all the kids.
My only issue with him was that his table was mobbed all day and the mob moved in back of his tables and a little too close to my tables. As I stated earlier, I am really wary about theft and don't like anyone I don't know behind my tables.
Also, one of his buddies was carrying the stink. Oh, not again, I thought. Two days in a row of stink! This stink was more subtle than the guy who overwhelmingly smelled like doody yesterday but strong enough that it was disturbing. Bathe people -- please!
I didn't have anybody set up to my right as the proper exit doors were over there. On the other side of the doors, along the back wall was my friend John Dobiecki. I have had the pleasure of knowing John for years. One of the nicest guys you will ever meet, and he almost always has the largest selection of modern cards at any show.
On the buying front, I purchased a bunch of stuff from Junior. I finally pulled the trigger on the '68 Mantle with writing on it that he has been shopping around for a long time. Mantles are on fire right now and I have pretty much sold my inventory of them over the past several months. I am in desperate need of more Mantles.
I also picked up from Junior some 1962 Aurovision Records. When I was growing up, my dad had a drawer full of them that he probably purchased in 1962. I wasn't born until 1966. I thought they were cool then and think they are even cooler now. The images of the players on the records are some of the best, they rival the photos from the old Sport magazines.
I was just looking at the few Aurovision Records I already had and was wishing I had more of them. Sometimes your wishes come true!
Junior showed me a pile of 1966 Topps and 1965 Topps baseball he purchased from another dealer at the show. He got a really nice price on the cards. I told him I was interested, and he came over to my office on Monday and sold me most of the cards. Noticeably absent on Monday were the '66 Mantle and '66 Oliva. I wonder if he'll have them Sunday in Orland.
At the end of the day, I was a little disappointed that sales were nowhere like last month. I guess I need to bring the binders to this show. I'll be back on April 3 with binders.
Another double bill weekend coming up with the Rock Church show on Saturday, March 12, and the Orland Park show on Sunday, March 13. I'll probably have a similar set up to the past weekend. Let me know if you want to see any binders. Also, the next Oak Creek show is April 2. Dealer tables are sold out.
A big thank you to everybody who bought and sold me cards this past weekend in Oak Creek and Schaumburg. Also, thanks for following along with this blog. A few guys complained that I am rambling a bit lately. Sorry! I will try and shorten it up!
See you soon!