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Rich Klein’s Ramblings: What I’ll Be Doing at the NSCC

by Rich Klein

This is the last of our run-ups to the National Sports Collectors Convention. While we have not been quite as “National memories” focused as I would have thought, it was nice to hear directly from several readers how much they enjoy our little soirees into the past even if we temper that with references from the present. My NSCC streak is now at 31 straight years of perfect attendance by the way.

Richs Ramblings Remembering those who have left us in the past year (Mike Hersh, Ace Marchant, Mike Gallela and others I'm sure) is very nice but appreciating those who are still either setting up at booths (John Rumirez, BA Murry, Kevin Savage just to name a few) is always a good thing to do this time of year.

We have several goals at the 2013 National which include helping find more columnists, and/or specialists in a sport or a genre for SC Daily, which continues to grow and prosper as it celebrates its 7th birthday.   If interested you can either email me at the address at the bottom of this article or email the boss, editor Rich Mueller at [email protected].

Other tasks include setting up interviews with the hobby's makers and shakers (those can be done either at the show or via phone or email after the show) and saying hello to our friends; for example, talking to long-time dealer/collector Bill Zimpleman in detail about his days as a record store owner.  We are also looking for a "sponsor" for this column and as I'm finding out, many leading hobby people past and present read this regularly.

In addition, we intend to bring you up to the minute hobby stories if and when they break during the show along with features. There are always several events so we will attend those we know about and report accordingly. If you have any event planned for the National, again please let us know.

A few other odds and ends to cover:

Stephens Convention CenterWe had heard about Mark Anderson's new position with COMC before the announcement and congratulations to him on his sales advocate position. Mark can certainly add a new dimension to what COMC is doing and by being in the Dallas area he will be able to travel, if needed, much easier than from the Pacific Northwest. Mark did a lot of good work at Beckett  both as an analyst as well as the Grading Director so congratulations to both Tim, Julie and the rest of the COMC team as well as to Mark. We look forward to catching up with Mark at the National.

Off topic:  My very beautiful and talented niece now has a new stage name: "Lexey Layne". Her web site is http://lexeylayne.com/ and I got to tell you those are some of the best photos of her I have ever seen. She is traveling frequently to Nashville and is the middle of creating her first songs. I'm very excited for her and she has come a long way from the article I wrote comparing her to Archie Bradley. I should mention that both of them are having really good years in 2013.

And for the fun of it, one quick National recollection. At the 1984 National in Parsippany New Jersey, my old friend Walt Brown (who has written several books and articles on the assassination of President Kennedy) could not find a 1951 Topps Blue Back Bobby Doerr card and asked me to look to help him. I did look the entire show when I could and could not find one until I asked the dealers next to me if they had one. They did and I could have saved a ton of time during the convention. The funniest thing was we were next to the Barnings of Baseball Hobby News fame and my dad actually ended up spending a great deal of time monitoring and getting names for their fishbowl (predecessor of the email list I suppose).  One of my favorite photos of dad was the one taken of him manning the fishbowl during the show. Hard to believe the first East Coast National was nearly 30 years ago now.

And another memory of that show was an impromptu footrace between Al Rosen and Bill Huggins. Huggins, if I recall correctly, injured his leg doing that and was in a cast for several months afterwards. I also remember that Bill's wife was from Parsippany, New Jersey and always bought Richie Zisk cards from me every show. When I see Bill this year, I need to remind him of those days and that footrace.

Rich Klein can be reached at [email protected]

About Rich Klein

Rich Klein has spent almost his entire life collecting baseball cards having begun at the tender age of seven. He has spent more than three decades in the organized hobby including editing the first 12 editions of the Beckett Almanac of Baseball Card and Collectibles. He lives in Plano, TX along with his wife Dena and their two dogs. You can reach him at [email protected].

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