Sunday, July 26, 2009


When I send cards I send along a self addressed stamped envelop (SASE) for the player to return the signed card in. I put my address on the SASE, and also put my address in the return address field. Why do I put my address in both spots? Because I always worry that the postal service will find a reason why they can’t deliver my SASE to me and would then try to RTS (Return to Sender) it back to return address. I assumed I was being over paranoid. Well guess what?

Tuesday I came home to find one of my SASE had return with a RTS sticker on it. Yes, the postal service had determined it could not deliver my SASE to the person it was addressed to even though that person was me and the address on the SASE was the correct address. Well the postal service RTS it back to the person listed in the return address which was me as well. So my putting my address in the return address field of the envelop had paid off.

The only thing I saw that was wrong on the envelop was the there was no post mark. The stamp was from the post office so it was good, but for some reason the envelop never got a post marked.

In the end I got my signed card, and what a card it was. Football Hall of Famer Dick Butkus signed a card for me! Now I have the three greatest (in my opinion) defensive football players of all-time – Lawrence Taylor, Alan Page, and Dick Butkus.

And to think, I would not have gotten Dick Butkus if I had not taken a couple extra moments to put my address up in the return address field of my SASE.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

More Twins Signings

Saturday I made the drive up to Elk River. Michael Cuddyer and Brendan Harris were signing autographs at the Cub Foods in Elk River. In fact Twins players were all over the Twin Cities area Saturday. Jason Kubel was in Maple Grove, Joe Nathan was in St. Louis Park, Denard Span was in Hudson, Wi (Hudson is right across the MN/WI border), Scott Baker was in Minnetonka, R.A. Dickey was in Roseville, and Brian Dunesing was in Apple Valley.

With all these players out and about and signing autographs at roughly the same time I had to choose where I wanted to go. I choose going to see Cuddyer and Harris because I had just bought some nice looking Allen & Ginter cards of Cuddyer, Harris, Nathan, Blackburn, Liriano, and Gomez. I have goal of getting all these cards signed. Since both Cuddyer and Harris are both in that group of cards, and I don’t really have a signed card of Harris, the choice of where to go was quite obvious.

The choice was made easier by the fact I knew I could mail Nathan his card with a SASE c/o of the Twins and he would sign it and send it back. Blackburn is also great at signing stuff sent to him, but I had sent him a Topps Heritage card in April, and I wanted to wait till at last August before sending him another card. I don’t want Nick Blackburn to think I am trying to spam him with autograph requests.

My hope for Saturday was to get to Elk River early, get through the line quickly then make the 40 minute drive to Roseville to get R.A. Dickey who I need to add to my collection. I got to Elk River at 10:15 for the scheduled 11:30 signing. A handful of people were there already ( and I knew many more would follow which they did), so I quickly got in line. I figured I would get through the line in 10-15 minutes and be able to get in Roseville in time for R.A.

Unfortunately things did not work out as planned. Michael Cuddyer, who is a class guy, arrived early. Brendan Harris was 10 minutes late. The line moved slower than expected, and I was left with only 25 minutes to make a 40 minute drive. Obviously R.A. would have to wait another day.

Instead I took the opportunity to drive around the area heading north to Zimmerman and Princeton. This area is fast becoming an area of growth as more people try to get away from the city. However as more people move out there it is fast become more a part of the city. Pretty soon these cities will be outer ring suburbs, but for now they are still country towns.

I did make it down to Roseville, but it was later in the afternoon. I wanted to stop at Three Star Sports Cards to get some more cards for signing. Dan, one of the owners, told me the 2009 Allen & Ginter cards had arrived. They were $5 for a pack of 8, and $100 + for a box. Ouch! I remember when packs of cards cost 25 cents and you got 12 cards and a stick of gum. Of course that was 30 years ago.

I will wait for Three Star to set out some single Allen & Ginter cards. Yes, they usual charge a $1 or $2 for each card, but I will get who I want instead of spending $5 and taking a chance on getting who I want.

I returned home to find I had mail. Joe Nathan had returned my signed Allen & Ginter card I had sent him in the mail. He had also signed a SPX card for me. Joe Nathan is just a class individual who remembers his fans. He has also been selected to play in his fourth All-Star game. Go Joe Nathan!

I ended up with signed Allen & Ginter cards from Cuddyer, Harris, and Nathan all on the same day. It was god day.