Shoebox of Memories – Part 1
My sister called me out of the blue last week asking me to drive her to run some errands. No problem, went and did my big brotherly duty and took her to the grocery store and what not. When we got back to her house she mentioned she had some things for me…a Christmas present she had to have returned due to a printing error, some coupons for my wife…and a large shoebox (albeit one of the plastic Tupperware variety) of my old baseball cards she saved from my Mom’s apartment! My mother died about six years ago now…and the time after her death was the beginning of what I refer to as the Time of Upheaval. Within three months my mother died, my first daughter was born, I began working for my current employer, and we uprooted and moved my new family back to our hometown. During the phase of cleaning out my mother’s apartment, stress was at an all-time high and I’m fairly certain I did a once over and told everyone I was good with burning the rest of the leftover mess. However, my sister stuck around after we completed our part to oversee the estate and complete the cleaning process. She saved this for me:
You’ve heard the tales of finding a shoebox full of 1952 Topps Mickey Mantles in attics? This story is similar…however this is a shoebox full of memories and it’s glorious. I returned home that night and helped get my kids to bed and then started right to work on the carpet of our living room…calling out randomness to my wife like “Look at this one!” and “This is the best picture ever!” When the sort was done, here is what I had:
The pile off to the top left is damage/unusable cards. The Pirates got hosed…lots of damaged cards there including a couple of cool Doug Drabeks but again I’m not a Pirates collector so it’s not a big deal. I’m amazed there weren’t more cards damaged…there were a few funky bends but most of the cards were in remarkable shape, even if they still smelled like my mom’s apartment which was pretty creepy (and gross). I’m airing the cards out now and I’m going to feature the highlights in the next post. I picked over this stuff pretty well before abandoning them initially, as there were absolutely no Dodgers in the piles above. However, you may have noticed there was a 550 count box on top of the shoebox…and that might be where this story really begins:
I guess I had another box…this one is full of Dodgers who weren’t featured on Dodger cards at the time…i.e. Brett Butler as a Brave and Giant, etc. but it also had those players’ Dodger cards too! I think at one point in 1996 I made this box for players that had moved on and I had decided to “stop” collecting…but it definitely has Dodgers in it and I am stoked to go through it all and see what we’ve got. It’s pretty cool to be looking through this stuff and find players still active today (guess who that might be) and Dodgers who have come to be some of my all-time favorites.
Next post, highlights and Dodgers from my youth!