Tuesday, August 2, 2011

A lesson from Ralph Houk

About 10 years ago or so, I sent a TTM request to Ralph Houk, and it taught be a valuable TTM lesson: send the cards by themselves - no penny sleeves or top loaders. Up to that point, I usually put the few requests I sent out in a penny sleeve or a soft plastic case. When Mr Houk returned my request, I found that he had signed the penny sleeve and not the card. My fault - the guy was obviously pretty old and it was naive of me to think he would take the card out. I ended up sending the card back with no case and got this one back signed.

Since then, I've never included a case or sleeve of any kind. After this happened, I started putting two index cards on both sides of the card, but then started to get worried that a player thought I wanted those signed in addition to the cards. Now I just send the card unprotected in the letter and fold the SASE around them. For the most part, the cards come back unscathed. I've had a few come back with dinged corners or a crease, but overall no issues. Condition doesn't matter too much to me anyways, these are for me.

Thanks for the valuable lesson, Mr. Houk. Even after your coaching days you were still a great teacher and I thank you.

1 comment:

  1. I don't recall if I ever used penny sleeves. I used to send one index card along with the baseball card, and ask for their signature on that also. Sometimes I would put a sticker on the index card - either the team sticker from Fleer packs or the player's Topps sticker. Once a player signed the actual sticker...I think it was Shawon Dunston...that left a lot of white space! But most of the time the player would sign the white part of the index card next to the sticker.