Posts Tagged ‘coins’

Diversion, Good . . . Obsession, Bad.

September 21, 2008

roosevelt-dimes-albumI’ve always loved hobbies and collecting things. In my younger days, I spent many happy hours immersed in my baseball card, comic book, coin and stamp collections. I still harbor dreams of starting up some of those hobbies again someday.

However, such healthy pastimes can morph into unhealthy obsessions. So can a love of following sports. Or reading junk novels. Or trading stocks. Or watching escapist television shows. (I’m reminded of comedian Bill Arnold’s joke: “I saw a survey that says the average American watches 5½ hours of television a day. Can you believe that? I mean, c’mon . . . they’re missin’ a lot of good shows!”stamp-album

Turning to hobbies, guilty pleasures or other mindless activities to relieve stress for a few hours can be a wonderful thing. Using them to escape life altogether is something else entirely.

football-fan-painted-faceThere’s nothing wrong with watching a couple football games every week, following the rest of the league online, and playing fantasy football with a group of pals. But there’s nothing right about (more…)

Goodbye Baseball Cards, Hello Life

August 22, 2008

willie-maysWhen I was twenty-three, financial challenges forced me to sell off my baseball card collection. I realize how trivial this may sound to some of you. But I had been collecting cards since I was six years old and they were precious to me.

I remember biking home from the drugstore at seven years old with a box of baseball cards—filled with twenty-four packs at a nickel each—and sitting at our family room table lovingly opening each pack, checking each card against my checklist, and organizing them into appropriate piles. My happiness could not have been more complete. Saying goodbye to my baseball cards felt like I was losing my best friends—and a big piece of my youth as well. I miss them to this day.

In hindsight, however, I am glad I had to let them go. If I hadn’t, I would have continued to (more…)