When you think about it, and I mean really think about it, it is pretty remarkable just how resilient our hobby is. Through thick and thin, collectors stay the course. Presented with various kinds of obstacles, the hobby stands defiant and moves forward. Some of these negative forces originate from inside the industry itself, while others attack from the outside. Most of the time they are easily deflected, leaving almost no mark of which to speak. They are seemingly washed away with little effort. Bug meet windshield.
Our hobby has dealt with all sorts of issues that can impact our market. Some of these things did have a negative effect for some period of time, there is no question about it, but none of them came close to derailing the hobby that we know and love. There have been endless amounts of disheartening events like sports strikes, athlete controversies, PED investigations, financial meltdowns, real estate bubbles, forgery rings, industry scandals, FBI busts, manufacturer attrition, war and terrorist attacks.
It was nearly 15 years ago when we all watched in horror as two planes slammed into the World Trade Center in New York. Just days later, I watched in amazement as an already-scheduled card auction proceeded with terrific results. How could the prices be so strong in the midst of this tragedy? As a group, collectors are certainly not callus by nature, but this is our escape from the sometimes brutal reality of the world. For some it's hiking or fishing, reading or cooking, golfing or painting, but for us it's collecting.
During that same period of time, we have all witnessed highly volatile stock and metals markets throughout the world. When times are good and people have more disposable income, they tend to spend more money on their chosen hobbies. That said, sometimes things aren't so good. So, how do a large number of people react? They often run to tangibles, which can help our market, at least at the high end. The hobby finds ways of not only surviving, but flourishing, in good times and bad.
We are collectors. We are wired a certain way and collecting is what we love to do. I have the collecting gene, and if you are reading this, you probably have it too. It's all right to laugh at ourselves and acknowledge our nature. It's who we are and we love it. Most of us don't stop doing what we love because of other people's actions. Most of us don't stop collecting because we are disappointed, angry or sad. There are things that can hinder our experience or prevent us from enjoying our chosen endeavor to the fullest, but most hobbyists don't ever completely lose interest. They usually stop because they have to.
Many times, it's about money. Let's face it, no matter what level of collector you consider yourself to be, it takes money to buy the collectibles we want. You may be getting married, building a family, renovating your house or paying off a college loan for yourself or someone else. Most of us have experienced times in our lives when we needed to take a break for financial reasons, but we didn't lose our desire.
We are collectors. We are resilient ... and it feels good. If collectors have the financial wherewithal to participate and are still breathing oxygen, this hobby is going nowhere. Why? It is part of who we are. Not every human being has the same predisposition to collect or understands us, but a certain percentage of people will always tick the way we tick.
As long as there are people on Earth, there will be collectors and the hobby will continue to push forward through whatever obstacles come our way because collecting is what we do.
Never get cheated,
Editor In Chief for PSAcard.com