I'll admit....I've been a little demotivated with the hobby recently - I'm in a bit of a funk you could say. Nothing is really exciting or "talk-worthy". That is until last night's trade night when all that went straight out the window.
I was the very fortunate recipient of a gift.
I'll say this...I like cards with stories. And I like collectors who have stories to tell. To me, hockey cards are more than just little 2.5x3.5 pieces of cardboard with price tags on them. They tell of history in the sport and in the hobby, be it a superstar name or one game wonder.
So when I was sifting through a monster box of traders, and gawking at many spectacular offerings, I was immediately drawn to a stack of 51/52 Parkhurst jewels. While sorting through them (and imagining how many of them I'd love to buy) I came across a few other vintage goodies.
The box owner popped by and lifted one out. We took a closer look at it and he told me that it was a gift.
He said that when he picked it up he was thinking of me and that I'd probably appreciate it and enjoy it.
Enjoy it? This is downright awesome.
For those of you who might not recognize the buzz cut Ed Shack, this is the rookie card (from the 1958/59 Topps set) from the man who we would later dub "The Entertainer".
Next to the Bobby Hull, this Shack rc is the most desirable card in the set. Definitely not "common" or no name.
Still not sure you know who he is? Here....maybe this will help.
That is just a spectacular photo.
In his post-playing days, he'd ham it up during NHL oldtimers events as "referee"....while dog-collaring players I'm sure.
Alright, back to the card.
When I was told that the card was meant for me and was bought with me in mind, I really was taken aback. I mean, this isn't a Trevor Linden offering on my wantlist, it's not a Cup raiser or goalie mask card, not quite a vintage Parkie and it's not numbered less than 100.
No, this card has it's own energy....it's own character and that's what I see in spades.
Just look at how tight that jersey is on the young 21-year-old winger. His gloves crawl halfway up his arms. The stick is a fine wood offering (and probably a straight blade). And I must correct myself.....it's a SWEATER, not a jersey.
The card design is so simple, but that was how things were back in the 50's. Huh....this card is almost 60 years old. How cool is that?
Creases and dinged corners be damned....they just add to the awesomeness.
And since we are having so much fun....
I would have expected nothing less.
Topps knew even then when they stated "Colorful..." and "Aggressive..". Yeah, that would be bang on. And who nowadays would have a hobby like "truck driving" or skills like "butcher boy".
I wish this piece of cardboard could talk so I could hear some of the neat stories of where this card has been. For now, it's an easy decision as to what I'll be doing with it.
My little shrine at work could use a new addition ever since I snagged my #WalletCard off the mantle back in January. This Shack will make for a great conversation piece.
And to the fellow collector who gifted me this card - Thank You!!! Your generosity, enthusiasm and approach towards the hobby is one that I appreciate and enjoy. Please know that this card really means a lot.