I forgot to report in my Day 1 blog that around midnight I went to Harrah's 24-hour Italian cafe and ate a delicious sub sandwich. When I went back to the room, I was unable to see much out the large picture window because it was pitch black out. In the morning I was able see a most amazing view, pictured above. I loved looking out that window all week and now miss that view now that I am home.
I met our host Gregg Klien first thing in the morning. What a great guy! He really took such great care of us. We chatted briefly about his collection of unopened wax before he was summoned away. I was able to give him a dealer badge which was the least I could do. I am so far in his debt. We had such a great time at Harrah's!
Once at the show, all I saw were people. The second day of the 2022 National was all about people... lots of people. The place was jammed! It was so crowded that walking through the aisles was extremely difficult. I can't even tell you what I sold. All I know is that I sold a TON of cards and Thursday was my best day.
Though, sales actually started out slow. I did not have much action in the morning. Around noon I went to the concession stand and purchased a hot dog. Once back at the booth, I was unable to eat the dog because everybody and their mother suddenly wanted to purchase my cards. The hot dog was real cold by the time I finished it. I have to say that it was a decent dog regardless. I just wish there was some onion and tomatoes available for toppings.
On the buying front, same as yesterday. Everyone who showed up at the booth with cards to sell was way over priced. I just started to tell people I was not buying. It was just a huge waste of time to look at these overpriced cards. Especially in the afternoon when I had nothing but buyers at my table.
My buddy Bob spent the day walking the floor and making purchases. He came back to the booth with a pile of T206s. Cool stuff!
I saw more people I knew like childhood buddy Ross Forman. I saw Milwaukee's own Nelson Rodriguez. Bill Nest stopped by in between getting autographs. Gregg Klein stopped by as well and said he was really impressed with the show. I hope Gregg comes out to Chicago next year. It was nice to see familiar faces at the show.
Seemed to be a big Pittsburgh contingency at the show. I saw nothing but Roberto Clemente jerseys on Thursday.
Not a whole lot to report on Thursday other than I was extremely busy in the afternoon. It sure was fun selling so many cards!
Once back at Harrah's, we met Gregg at the Gordon Ramsay Steak House. We were a little late because traffic was horrible around the convention center. Gregg patiently waited for us.
A pretty hostess seated us in the middle of the restaurant. All sorts of folks came by to say hello from waiters, the restaurant manager and the chef. We were treated like royalty. I always order a New York strip when I am at a steak house and ordered one here. I also ordered lobster bisque soup. Gregg had the filet and Bob and Dave had the delmonico steak. Everybody's food looked phenomenal. The lobster bisque was unique. I received a large bowl containing a ball of lobster in the middle. The server then poured the soup over the ball of lobster. It was quite delicious. My steak was thick and tasty.
We also had some sides like fingerling potatoes that came with parmesan cheese, truffle butter and chives. Tasty. Then we had shitake mushrooms in a soy glaze, fried garlic and scallions. Amazingly good. Then street corn made with poblano, lime, chipotle ancho-spice, and corn crema. The corn had a kick and was incredible. I've never had corn so good.
Then we split some decadent desserts including a chocolate peanut butter bar made with crisp chocolate, peanut butter and milk chocolate mousse, chocolate glaze, roasted candied peanuts, and chocolate crunchies -- oh my! Then we had the sticky toffee pudding which may be the most amazing dessert I have ever tasted. This item was made up of a light, creamy cake covered in sticky toffee sauce and brown butter ice cream. Gregg said this is Gordon Ramsay's grandmother's recipe and he will not share it. I don't blame him, it is just amazing.
It was nice to have an opportunity to chat with Gregg. Before I met him, I kind of pictured him to look and sound like Joe Pesci. But Gregg is a normal looking guy, a very smart and hard working guy who collects cards. Bob commented that Gregg is just like us.
Gregg told us that he has a bachelor's degree in economics from Rutgers University and a masters in finance from Rutgers. He spent a good number of years working as a financial analyst on Wall Street before coming to Harrah's. He kept us entertained with great stories about Harrah's. We really enjoyed hanging out with Gregg.
Operating a casino hotel is far more complex than I ever imagined. I plan on going back to Harrah's Atlantic City for a vacation with my family. It was so fun!
After dinner, Gregg had to go back to work while Bob, Dave and I went to the casino. I played video poker for about an hour then went up to the room and fell asleep. Bob and Dave came back a few hours later than I did.
What a great day!!!
Below are some photos from the second day of the show.