On December 8, I traveled to the Bloomingdale show. We had some bad weather on this day, making driving a bit treacherous. It was no wonder the show was slow. It's hard to get folks out when they gotta shovel their driveways and the roads are a mess. Bad weather hit again for the December 14 Orland show. Driving was again scary and not too many folks braved the weather for the show. Again, I had a slow show. The highlight of the day was having lunch after the show at Giordano's with Mark S., Chuck T. and Will and Joe.
Luckily the weather cleared up the following day, December 15, for the Gonzaga show. This was one of the best attended shows I've had the pleasure of working in a long time. Keith told me the attendance numbers, but I've forgotton. I think he said we had 500 people through the door, though it may have been more. Needless to say, I was busy all day and sold a ton of cards. Keith also gave me some Christmas gifts to bring home to my kids. It's no wonder people pack into the Gonzaga show like no other show. These folks do it right. They have giveaways, raffles, live auction, kids' auction, food, inexpensive autograph guests, and affordable dealer table rates.
The following weekend I returned to Bloomingdale, which was once gain slow but I made some nice purchases, including some
1971 Topps football stars. I really don't mind if a show is slow as long as I can make some good buys. Next up, was the Serb Hall show on December 29. The show was a little slower than I expected but I still made out okay with my sales. There were a few guys I was expecting to show up that never made it.
As 2013 came to a close, I was exhausted. It was a long year. I turned 47. I worked Monday through Friday at my day job then worked a show most every weekend. I spent most of my free time pricing cards for the shows or organizing cards for eBay. I started a new job which is much more labor-intensive than my old job. I lost some close family and friends. My wife had some serious health issues most of the year. Though, she was still able to rock eBay for me. She really hustled in 2013 posting cards for me and my consignors and did a terrific job wrapping cards and getting them mailed out. She's the best. I'm one lucky guy.
I kind of limped into 2014. I felt sick on New Year's day and it lasted the entire month. Which is really odd considering I had a flu shot. I missed a week of work because of the flu and missed just about all of my January card shows. The only show I made it to in January was Gonzaga -- and I was sick that day too! Though, I had another tremendous day and we had another big crowd, which eased the pain. I finally got some antibiotics and this sickness pretty much just went away as I write this. I'm expecting to get back into the swing of things now. I attended the Serb Hall show today which was an excellent show. The early morning was slow then we had a real nice crowd from about 10 a.m. to noon. I had quite a few sales. I didn't buy anything today which was a little disappointing. So I bought a few T205s on eBay tonight to make up for the lack of purchases at the show.
I've about had it with winter and could really use a vacation to somewhere warm. Though, I used up all my vacation days already due to the flu, so I'm stuck here until I "earn" some more vacation days at work. I've got quite a few shows planned for the next several months. I still haven't decided if I want to set up at the March Sun-Times show, which is now called something else like Fan Authentics. I just might take that weekend off and rest up. Without any vacations days, I'll have to work that Friday at my day job. It just may be too difficult to do the show if I can't get that Friday off work. I'd have to set up after work on Thursday, then work Friday and arrive at the show at 6 p.m. I'd miss two hours of the show on that Friday.
For the immediate future, I've got two shows slated for next weekend. It will be my first Orland show since the slow December 14th show. I heard we are supposed to have lousy weather next weekend, so my expectations aren't very high. Did I say, I'm sick of winter? On Sunday, I'm planning to head to Bloomingdale. I'm going to try and pack up around noon, however, because my son has his Cub Scouts Pinewood Derby that afternoon. I'm currently working on loading up some 1975-76 Topps hockey. I should have those cards ready to go next weekend. I'm also planning on pricing up some more star cards for my display cases.
As much as I like to complain, I have been doing the Orland and the Bloomingdale shows for so long that while my sales might not be strong next weekend, I get to see all sorts of customers and dealers that have become good friends over the years. So, I'm looking forward to seeing everybody next weekend. Even if sales are slow, I usually have a good time. And why not, cards are fun! I just hope the weather cooperates next weekend!