Today I gave what amounted to the bulk of my football and baseball card collection to a 14-year-old young man named Matt from the South Hills who was the only youth who replied to my craigslist ad to give away my cards. Everyone else was an adult, in some cases asking for them to give to a youth. But from our email correspondence responding the cards, I could tell that the cards should go to him. Today, when I met him face-to-face, and saw his family crammed into the minivan waiting for him, I knew that the cards were going to the right place. I couldn't have picked a better candidate if I had tried. Typical Pittsburgh family. Going into high school in the fall, braces, zits, facial hair in patches, hair all a mess like the kids wear it these days. I wouldn't go as far as to say something sort of corny like he reminded me of me at his age. Because he didn't. But he did remind me that baseball cards are something to be handed down, within families, from outside families, among complete strangers. That's the way it should be done, and today I helped continue the tradition.
For such a large collection, there were just a small number of cards of any real value in today's market, something about which I've lamented in previous posts. I kept those cards. I didn't give them to Matt. Although there were some decent cards in what I gave him. Just not anything with much actual value. And in a surprisingly sentimental move, I kept the complete Topps set from 1979, the last year that the Pittsburgh Pirates will ever win a World Series.