Sunday, June 8, 2014

Recent Autograph Hauls

The past couple of weekends I have been fortunate enough to be able to add a few new autographs to my various collections. All have been free sigs, so that's always a good thing for my now light wallet. Like I always say, if it's free, it's for me.

The first autograph signing was about a week ago at Modell's in Time Square. Eric Decker, the new wide receiver for the New York Jets, was making an appearance so, I was absolutely going to be there. I am very excited that Decker is a New York Jet. He gives Geno Smith a target that is proven and I think he's going to help the open up the offense.

Decker was scheduled to start signing at 1 PM, so I made sure I got there early. The first 100 fans were guaranteed autographs. The only catch was you either had to buy something at the store and show the receipt at the front of the line, or take the free picture they gave with the autograph. I opted for buying a Jets mini helmet for Decker to sign. After I made the purchase, I got in line.

I knew the wait was going to be pretty long, so I bought a book and spent my time reading it. About a half hour before the signing was scheduled to start Modell's employees started handing out the tickets. I got mine and noticed I was number 76 in line. I was glad I got there when I did because the line got pretty long with Jet fans wanting to meet Decker and wish him good luck.

I finally got inside the store and after a 10 minute wait, I got to the front of the line and got to meet Decker. I welcomed him to NY and wished him the very best of luck. He thanked me and told me he appreciated the well wishes as he signed the mini helmet and I was on my way.

You can see my helmet waiting on the table to be signed.

And here is the helmet signed. The signature is better in person, trust me. Another addition to my Jets collection.

Yesterday, I was able to meet former New York Knicks John Starks and Charles Oakley. The signing was at a car dealership in Queens. It's was in a place I wasn't too familiar with, so I made sure I left my home extra early. I had Googled the directions to the dealership by subway, so I was looking at a hour and 20 minute ride there. Of course, I arrived there in an hour, but it took me a few minutes to locate the dealership. I actually started to go in the opposite direction. But, thanks to GPS on my phone, I found the place without any other issues.

ESPN, which sponsored the event, had set up a tent out back of the dealership. Starks and Oakley sat at a table inside the tent and was signing autographs for the fans that were lined up. The line wasn't too long so I got my stuff ready for them to sign. Starks didn't say too much as he signed for me. Oakley was talking to someone as he signed my items.

Here's where I get on my soap box and rant for a few. I absolutely despise it when the person in line before you or one of the representatives start talking to the athlete while your there, waiting to say something to the person and get a hand shake. I feel it's rude and makes me feel ignored. Needless to say, Oakley didn't really say much to me as he was busy talking to someone else and I walked away a bit perturbed. At least I got my items signed.

I printed a 11x14 photo of Starks dunking over Michael Jordan and Horace Grant during Game 2 of the 1993 Eastern Conference Finals in a play that is now known as "The Dunk". This came out great and I cannot wait until I have it framed and hanging up.

I printed out a 8x10 of the Knicks logo and had Starks and Oakley sign it. I want to get as many players who played for the Knickebockers to sign it. I haven't decided it I am going to send it out TTM. If I do, I can try to have Richie Guerin, Harry Gallatin, Dick Van Arsdale, and Kenny Walker to sign it. I would hate to lose it though.

I'm also working on having a Knicks picture book signed by as many players, so I had Oakley and Starks sign pictures of them inside the book.

I had a lot of fun graphing again. I haven't gone out to meet players as regularly as I'd like to, but it feels pretty good when you get the autographs you have been wanting for your collection. I'm hoping I can add more autographs this summer to my growing collection as long as I'm not mushing a dog sled team across the Antarctic, riding a camel through the Sahara dessert or swimming across the Gulf Of Mexico...  OK, maybe for the right autograph.

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