Eric Jahnke's First National
Aug 3 2008 10:54PM
That was entirely too much fun. Not only did I get to attend my first National, but I also got the assignment of the year when Tracy Hackler sent Al, Brad and me to cover an Upper Deck Diamond Club event...at historic Wrigley Field.
I haven't worked so hard in my life. Thank you, Tracy, and thanks as well to Upper Deck, and Dave and Adam's, who hosted the after-game event at the Cubby Bear across the street.
More details on the day coming soon on Behind the Scenes.
We had planned carefully for the National and once we got there everything was going smoothly, but something was bound to happen, and it did. Somehow we lost our wireless connection Thursday, so Al Muir and I did not get to continually update the news like we should have. Expect a flood of stories and videos in the coming days.
First time for LOTS of things
This National had so many firsts that I don't have a clue what to write first. This one seems as good a place to start as any: During the National, Beckett Grading Services graded it's first ever Pristine 10 Joe Montana rookie.
The owner wished to remain anonymous, at least for the time being.
"I really don't want all the publicity right now, my cards speak for themselves," he said.
He was extremely nice, and handed Al and I the card so we could take photos of it. He must have figured we wouldn't be hard to track down if we made a mad dash for the door with it. Wearing a Beckett shirt is not the best way to start off a criminal career, especially when you work there.
I can say this, his booth had some of the best high-grade cards I have ever seen all in one place.
One of the many great athletes signing autographs at the show was the legendary two-sport hero, Bo Jackson. It was great to see him there, and the line was full of people with Raiders helmets, and, of course, White Sox jerseys.
Al and I were nearly run over and killed by an overly pushy mother who, for some strange reason, was yelling at her young teenage son to join her as she shoved her way to the rail to get a glimpse of Bo. Her elbow in my back explains this awful picture. Her son was not interested, and continued to play his little video game in the back of the crowd. Undeterred, she screeched at him (right in my ear) for a while, until we gave up and left.
You win this one lady, my ears are still ringing.
Normally I would rather go to the dentist than go shopping. When I die, if they don't let me in upstairs, then I know where I will spend eternity…a mall, during the Christmas frenzy.
The National was an exception to that. I "window" shopped as much as I could, never once getting bored since there was always another incredible item to see.
I came home with a very cool piece, a game-used Astros hat, worn by Roger Cedeno, I think, during Spring Training in 2000.
Since we were not able to research using the internet, I am completely guessing right now, but I am sure it is game worn, since it smells so good. I think he wore #19 with Houston though, but #14 is written inside the hat.
I am not shy about declaring my love for the Astros, even the guys who were only in Houston for one season, but that is not why this hat came home with me from Chicago.
When I flipped the hat over to look inside of it, I saw something written on the bill that made me pause for a moment and remember these guys are not only incredible athletes, they are human beings, too.
No matter who wore this hat, writing that on the bill was important to them, and that is something that we tend to forget. I am planning on doing a little research on it when I get done posting my National stories, so next week sometime.
Not too much to say here, I think the picture says quite a bit.
This is Mary Riley, one of the Benchwarmer girls, showing Al and me one of her "kiss" cards that a collector had just pulled out of a box he was busting at their booth.
We will post the video interview soon.
Spending time at the National, looking at ART?
You heard it right, Al Muir and I spent a bit of time casually strolling around looking at paintings.
These were no every day ordinary paintings. Nothing boring like Picasso, or silly like Monet. No sir, these were true works of art, and we enjoyed them thoroughly.
We even got to watch the artist while he worked on a masterpiece featuring two of the greatest human beings to ever live. I don't want to ruin the video interview we have coming, so I won't tell you who they were. However, I will gladly show a picture of just one of this man's beautiful work.
Stunning, isn't it?
The camera work is not excellent, but if you look closely above Hakeem's head, and at Nolan's waist, you can see where they have signed the painting. We also got to see the photographs of the players signing the paintings. If you got to see the painting in person, the signatures stand out very well.
There is much more to come, especially when the videos get edited.