So I first started selling cards in the late 1970's at a flea market at the long defunct Twin Drive-In Movie Theater in Wheeling, Illinois. My routine to prepare for shows is much the same today as it was back then when I was getting ready for the flea market. Before every show, I purchase a boatload of cards so I can have new inventory on my tables. I learned long ago that in order to have consistent sales, I must have new items on my tables.
While my sales are consistent, I may have overbought and am currently overbuying. I now have too many cards from the 1970's. I don't need any more. It will take me years to sell the ones in my possession, especially from 1976 to 1979, where I must have 10,000-plus cards from each year.
I had a couple guys offer me cards from the 1970's at this past Gonzaga show. I instinctively turned them down. I am suffocating under the weight of my 1970's inventory. One seller offered me four or five binders filled with 1978 and 1979 Topps baseball. I probably have 20,000 cards from 1979 Topps currently in my possession and at least 10,000 1978's if not more.
I know if I purchase any more '78's or '79's, they will just sit and take up space. I am finally at the point where I just have to say no. It did not matter that the seller at Gonzaga offered me the cards at a very good price. I just have too many of them and can not take on any more. The seller seemed flabbergasted when I refused the deal. Maybe I need to show the photo above whenever anyone offers up cards from those years. Please, please, don't bring me any cards from the 1970's.
At the end of the show, a guy came in with a binder of about 350 baseball cards from 1968 to 1972. I probably have 4,000 1968's, I must have 5,000 1969's, probably 7,000 1970's and another 7,000 1971's and 10,000 or so 1972's. Unlike '78's and '79's, I will still buy these years but only if they are dirt cheap and the groupings have stars and high numbers. This particular seller was awfully high on his price, his group had minor stars, not many, and NO high numbers.
He wanted $300 for the binder. You could probably go through the binders on my tables and pull cards and replicate this guy's binder and I would charge you around $90, not $300. There were '68 and '71 Carews in this guy's binder so I offered $100 which I thought was generous. He didn't seem to think I was for real and I got the feeling that he believes I will eventually offer him more money for the binder. Sorry, I won't. I don't need the cards. I have them.
Cards from the 1970's are not rare, they are not scarce, they are not hard to find. In fact, cards from the 1970's are plentiful. I am sitting on a mountain of them and just do not want any more. Please, please, do not bring me cards from the 1970's.
Needless to say, I did not purchase a whole lot of cards at the Gonzaga show which was really disappointing because I have been consistently purchasing great groups of cards from the 1960's and older at a regular clip at the Gonzaga show. I was really disappointed that better stuff did not show up at my tables.
On the selling front, my sales were pretty good considering the Packers-Vikings game began at noon. I arrived at the show a little earlier than usual with the game in mind. I observed that other dealers had the same idea and were there much earlier than normal.
I was busy as soon as I started setting up and did not have a chance to take any notes. Some sales I do remember is one customer purchased a large number of 1974 Topps baseball. Jason purchased some Goudeys. Dean purchased a pile of stuff. Gary somehow found some more 1955 Bowmans at my table. I desperately need to reload the Bowmans. I actually need to reload all of the binders. A few guys complained that the binders were empty.
It is a real battle for me to keep those binders loaded. I was actually in a really good place right before the National but since then, the binders have been depleted. Another issue I find that limits my ability to load more binders is that when I am working on the 1970's binders, where I have so many cards and so many to load into the binders, the job takes a painfully long time. I am currently on my third week of working on my 1975 Topps baseball binder. I work on it most every night and some on the weekends. It is just a very time-consuming process. Please, please, don't bring me any more cards from the 1970's and have some patience with the reloading of the binders. I eventually reload each binder but it takes some time. Complaining does not help me, I can't get them done any quicker.
As I stated in a previous blog, I try not to bring all of my binders out to each show so I can save them a little bit. I probably won't bring out any binders to the Orland show this Sunday, Sept. 22. I think I am just going to bring out display cases. My binders get hit especially hard at the Orland show. Thankfully, I am not setting up at any shows during the last weekend of the month. My binders need the break!
Like an old-time disc jockey, I do take special requests. Let me know if there is a certain binder you would like to see at the Orland show and I'll bring it out. I currently have a really nice inventory of cards for my display cases and should have some neat stuff at the Orland show. See you then, but please, please, don't bring me any cards from the 1970's!!