You’d be surprised how economically you can visit a four day card show–even without staying with relatives.
$87 hotel about 5 miles from the Convention Center with free hot breakfast. Take the hotel shuttle to the airport. Take another shuttle to a hotel located within walking distance of the place. Lather. Rinse. Repeat. We’re not ashamed to admit we’re being budget conscious these days, especially with gas at $3.50 per gallon.
There were panel discussions yesterday and more today involving third party grading, memorabilia in auctions and graded cards in auctions. We’re trying to catch some of these while handling exhibitor duties. Some interesting talk yesterday from the autograph authenticators, which we’ll feature in a story Monday. It’s always a subject with differing opinions on the various personalities involved but I came away very impressed with their honesty. It’s to their credit they’re here and willing to talk to the public. There were about 80 people in attendance for that particular event.
Jimmy Spence, Ron Gordon, Kevin Keating and Rich Albersheim were the panelists. One question centered around any particular favorite signed item. Spence listed an 1894 book with signatures of players and fans, Gordon preferred early Roberto Clemente autographs which he described as ‘artistic’ and Keating turned to a personal memory.
He was the autograph agent for Warren Spahn and as the Hall of Fame pitcher reached the final months of his life, he contacted Keating–now a friend–and asked him to come to his home to complete a scheduled signing earlier than planned. The night before Keating’s departure, he asked Spahn how his signature was looking since the pitcher’s health wasn’t what it once had been.
"It’s pretty good," Spahn said as he scribbled his name on a sticky note. Before he left, Spahn’s day nurse took a photo of the two. A few hours later, Spahn suffered a stroke and died within days. The sticky note was the last item Spahn signed and the picture with Keating was the last photo. Keating keeps both in a prominent place in his office.