Monday, June 26, 2017

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

A couple months back I saw that NBA All-time great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar would be signing autographs at the Puente Hills mall in an event hosted by Honabach and Sons. In a situation where I would have to drive 80 miles each way, I always have to make sure it's a player I truly covet or would add a lot to my collection.  With Kareem probably being a top 5 NBA player all time, I didn't think I could pass up the opportunity so I purchased tickets.  The day of the signing was this past Saturday June 24, so I made the trek up from Oceanside and got to the mall about 90 minutes before the signing was to take place.  Luckily, I had purchased the ticket right when the signing was available to the public, so I ended up with "VIP" tickets which in essence guarantee you a spot in the first 50. That meant I could show up to the event, pick up my will call tickets, then goof around in the mall until the signing began.
My son and I decided to grab a quick bit to eat, then got in line quarter to 12, which was fifteen minutes before the signing was to take place.  I snapped a photo from my spot in line;
If I had to guess, I was probably about 40th in the group with the VIP tickets.  The line on the opposite side of the store entrance had grown a lot by the time I exited the store with my autograph. It was probably 150 people strong at that point. To their credit, the organizers controlled the chaos in such a way that the line went smoothly, and within ten minutes I was close enough to snap a few photos of Kareem.
Next up was my son and I, and I had an 11x14 matte photo (with a dark background on purpose) ready to go.  I requested the HOF inscription, which tends to be my go to request.  I believe the photo came out real nicely.

After the signature had dried, I walked up to a (thankfully) very quick authentication line that Beckett was running, and they slapped the "Witnessed" authentication sticker on there.  After that, we were om the way home for a cool 1 hour and 45 minute drive in traffic.  Once I get this thing matted and framed, I'll put the photo of the final product on here.  Thanks for reading.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Marshall Faulk Celebrity Golf Championship

There is an annual Celebrity golf tournament hosted in San Diego that is now hosted by former San Diego State running back and NFL hall of famer Marshall Faulk.  Previous iterations of this event were hosted by Drew Brees, and prior to that, Stan Humphries.  I first began attending these events about 15 years ago since they were very easy to meet sports celebrities and add to my autograph collection.  This was the first time I had gone in probably ten years, but previously had so much success I figured it was worth going and seeing what would happen in the current version of the tournament.  Players like Mario Lemieux, Joe Morgan, Ozzie Smith, Grant Fuhr, Rollie Fingers, Deacon Jones, Drew Brees, Jeremy Roenick, Sterling Sharpe, Stan Mikita, and many more had signed autographs at these events for me before.  For more in depth details about the history of this event, and to see which celebrities attended this year, I suggest going here.

Instead of rehashing the whole day, I'm going to put up a few photos and quick snippets about who I got this time.

Terrell Davis was there, along with Faulk, Marcus Allen, Eric Dickerson, and Reggie Bush among former NFL running backs.  Davis signed and was in a great mood, messing with all the supporters.  I was happy to get him to sign.  Dickerson signed for everyone, but since I already had him in my collection I didn't bring anything for him.  Allen and Faulk never sign for anyone unless it's on a piece of paper.  I'm not sure if Bush signed or not, he said he'd sign after his round but I'm not sure what came of that.

Current Arziona Cardinal corner and All-Pro Patrick Peterson signed for me and a small group of people. He was cordial as well, and took a particular liking to this photo I found of him on Ebay.
NHL Hall of fame goalie and member of the "NHL Top 100" Grant Fuhr signed for everyone, as he always does.  Hockey players are always so nice, and very rarely say no to autograph seekers.  As I mentioned, I got Fuhr before but it was on a card, so heading into this event I made sure to bring an 8x10.  Side note, Fuhr is a fantastic golfer.

Troy Glaus and Jermaine Dye both signed basesballs for me.  Glaus signed after hitting some practice balls in the driving range, and Dye signed while waiting for his round to begin.  Both are former all stars, so they will go into my secondary baseball display case.

Other athletes I saw/heard sign but either didn't bring stuff for or just missed on include Jerry Rice (ouch), Brett Boone, Rick Rhoden, Gary Templeton, Matt Slauson, and Bernie Nicholls.  I did not wait for former Raiders wide receiver Tim Brown to finish his round, so not sure if he signed.  I was prepared with 8x10 photos of NHL Hall of famer Mike Modano, as well as US soccer superstar Landon Donovan, but they did not show for the Friday portion of the event.

Lastly, although I had nothing for him to sign, arguably my biggest thrill of the day was getting to meet and take a photo with actor Brian Baumgartner, who played Kevin on the Office.  My wife and I absolutely love the show, so going into the day my number one goal was to meet Brian.

All in all, it was a great day.  Hung out with my friend, watched some golf on a gorgeous day, and added some cool autographs to my ever growing collection.  Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Al Kaline-Through the Mail

As mentioned on a few of my previous threads, I have recently become interested in the idea of obtaining autographs through the mail.  There is a quite a bit of research involved in deciding which former athletes to send my items to, as I don't want to be spending money or using unsigned items on guys I have little to no chance of receiving anything from.  So far, this has paid off because up until this point I was 4/4 by sending things to Dirk Nowitzki, Ryne Sandberg, Wade Boggs, and Bobby Doerr.  You can read about all of those ventures and what I got signed by looking back on this blog.  Back on the 17th of January, I decided to mail an 8x10 photo to former Major Leaguer and Hall of Famer Al Kaline.  I chose a photo rather than my preferred choice of official baseball since I read on forums that Mr. Kaline won't sign baseballs through the mail.  As such, I found a photo I thought was cool, and sent it to the proper address using the correct channels.  I selected a photo in which I decided that if I was successful getting Mr. Kaline to sign, then I'd also have the pitcher in the photo (Bob Gibson) sign it as well at one of his numerous local signings he does.  Last night, I received this in the mail;
He signed it to the left of himself in the photo at my request, which is awesome because now I'm going to be able to have Mr. Gibson sign it as well, preferably below the mound.  When it's all said and done, I'll have this framed and have two Hall of Famers on one photo. Thank you for reading!

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Nolan Ryan private signing

I recently received a ball from a private signing Orange County Sports Cards held with Nolan Ryan.  I always keep an eye on upcoming signings both of the public and private variety.  If the price is right, I don't mind adding people to my collection, particularly major league baseball hall of famers.  I actually placed my order a few months ago, and the ball came in the mail Christmas Eve, as a nice little gift.  As you can see in the photo below, I chose the Hall of Fame baseball to be signed underneath the HOF logo, as opposed to a regular ball signed on the sweet spot.  The ball is also authenticated by Ryan's company.