I don’t pick up a lot of game-used or autograph cards as I usually find them disappointing. Nobody seems to know whether the artifacts are legitimate anymore, though I do trust in my event-used Anton Stralman patch card. (Yes, Anton might have worn this at the grand opening of Bucky’s Car Wash and Live Bait Emporium in West Pig Knuckle, Ontario!) I mean, you could fake this, but why?
I do trust that most autographs are probably signed by the person in question, or at least by someone they know, but the ones you can’t read aren’t that much fun. I have a couple Wendel Clarks and while I love Wendel, his signature is a mess.
But I do like this – a lot.
This is one of the Champ’s mini autograph cards from last season. They’re all hand-signed and the signatures of the old-timers look great – particularly since there isn’t a ton of space to work with.
Alex has long been a favourite of mine. I came to this in a bit of a roundabout way. I had a great uncle who was chased fairly hard by the Wings back in the late ’40s/early 1950s. My great-grandparents wouldn’t let him sign because they felt it wasn’t an appropriate lifestyle for their youngest son. He got a real job instead and became a senior hockey mainstay in BC.
As a kid, any tangential relationship to hockey was pure gold and I became fascinated with the 1950s Wings teams and particularly by this clean, quiet centre who spent 23 seasons feeding (mostly) Gordie Howe. Before player collecting was really a thing, I made sure I got one of every card he had issued during his career. When I saw this for $5, it was a no-brainer.
I also was playing with my fantastic box of ’79-80 (maybe the best purchase of last year) and happened across this:
Something prompted me to look at the back, more specifically the cartoon:
Well, Carol, I never had a specific reason to dislike you before, but now I do.