30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Thursday, April 30, 2015

My Cardboard Confession

Bless me fellow card collectors... for I have sinned.  I can't remember the last time I confessed, but the childhood memory I'm about to share is something I haven't spoken about in almost thirty years.

1986 Topps #53

Back in the Spring of 1986, I was wrapping up my final year of junior high and most of my friends were into girls, skateboarding, or both.  Me?  I was into baseball cards and video games.  Yeah... I'm not embarrassed to admit that I was a late bloomer and the stereotypical nerd.

But the story I'm about to share is very embarrassing and one of my least proudest moments.

1986 Topps #250

It was your average, run-of-the-mill afternoon and my friend and I decided to walk down to the local Long's Drugstore to buy some candy.  While we were there, I noticed that they had received a fresh supply of 1986 Topps baseball cards.  This was back in the day when stores still displayed their baseball cards in the candy aisle as well as their check-stands.   I picked up a couple and we started heading back.

After reached the back lot, my friend pulled out a handful of packs from her jacket and handed them to me.  I immediately knew that she had stolen them... but at the very moment, I didn't care.  The only thing that mattered was the stack of packs in my hand.

1986 Topps #647

Now before I continue, you should know a little bit about our friendship.  The girl and I had been friends since we were in first or second grade, and I had known for years that she had a crush on me.  So I wasn't too surprised when she offered to get me more.  Not just one or two packs, but a full box.

1986 Topps #531

Obviously, I should have declined her offer.  I was thirteen years old and was well aware of right and wrong.  My parents raised me to honor the family name, but on that particular day I had a major lapse in judgement.  The lure of opening a box of thirty-six packs was too strong and trumped my moral beliefs.

1986 Topps #29

We went home... dropped off our stuff, turned around, and went right back.  To make a long story... a little shorter.  She got caught.  Well... we got caught.  As soon as we exited Long's, a security guard asked us to go with him.

He took us to a special room upstairs and made us empty out our pockets.  I didn't have anything on me, but she had been holding onto the box under her jacket.  She immediately began to cry and I felt like the worst friend in the world.  Wait.  Let me rephrase that... I was the worst friend in the world.

1986 Topps #1

They had us call our parents to pick us up, but before we left they took Polaroid pictures of us, plastered them on their wall of shame, and permanently banned us.

We never hung out after that.  Part of it had to do with my parents grounding me for a long, long time.  It didn't help that she went to a different high school and moved a few years later.  But most of it had to do with me feeling guilty, ashamed, and embarrassed for taking advantage of a really good friend.

1986 Topps #689

I had completely forgotten about this story until a few weeks ago when I read one of Night Owl's posts.  I probably blocked out this memory as a way to save face.  That night I tried to track her down on Facebook and conducted a Google search, but was unsuccessful.

It's pretty unlikely... but maybe she'll stumble across this confession and accept my sincerest apology.

1986 Topps #80

Three decades later... baseball cards are still a huge part of my life along with the temptation to bust an entire box of cards.  However... I promise to never put them above my moral beliefs.

Happy Thursday and sayonara!


  1. So you allowed your friend to steal for you and you didn't even give her the d she wanted for years. Man you are a terrible friend.

    Okay in all seriousness we all have moments we're not proud of. I certainly can't claim to be a pure squeaky clean person. But you're at least man enough to admit them and face them by exposing yourself on the internet. Great post Fuji, I hope that the unsuccessful Facebook/Google search isn't the end of this story.

    1. *Note, that first sentence was a joke. I apologize if I went too far. I'll make up for it with cards. Shiny cards.

    2. Lol. No need to apologize. I'm pretty sure she wasn't looking for the "d". I'm guessing she would have been happy with holding hands. Just hoping to one day our paths will cross, so I can apologize in person.

  2. Those baseball cards make you do the darndest things.

  3. Wow Fuji.

    That is a very very heartfelt post. Thanks for sharing, I am sure it isn't easy and definitely wouldn't have been an easy situation to be a part of then or now. I am sorry to hear it was a splitting moment of what was and could have been a remarkable friendship. I am sure we have all done something crazy out of love for someone else and in many ways love is a crazy state of mind. I am hopeful she does stumble upon this if not by accident, then by someone who recognizes the story and the relevance to the other person.

    One of the most emotional posts I have ever read my friend!

  4. Great post Fuji, would be awesome if you somehow heard from her because of it!

  5. laurens - very, very true

    dave - Thanks. None of my childhood buddies kept in touch with her after she moved, but hopefully I'll be able to apologize to her in person one day. Yeah... love is definitely a powerful thing.

    shoeboxlegends - it would be great... just so I could finally say sorry to her in person

  6. I have a card-stealing story that I've alluded to several times, but I don't think I've dedicated a whole post to it. It's not nearly as dramatic as yours (I got away with it). Good post.

  7. Thanks for sharing. We've all done stupid stuff before and sometimes it just makes you feel better to share. Hope your paths cross at some point.

  8. night owl - not sure if I should be congratulating you on your success or not... but i'm glad to hear your story is less dramatic.

    matt - thanks. it definitely helped to write about it.

  9. I was eating a late night meal with some guys on my school's golf team when they decided it would be a good idea to 'walk the check' at the Ramada Inn dining room. Which was all well and good except for the fact that I was newly on crutches with a surgically repaired ankle at the time. Guess who got caught at the door by the manager and ended up paying the whole tab?

  10. Oh dang, I bet that felt good to get it off your chest though. Crazy!