Apfelbaum’s Corner – Volume 21

Copying Bill Veeck’s theory that baseball is for the “Little guy,” I think that stamp collecting is millions of little guys having fun, getting thrills and hoping for the extra enjoyment in life that we all seek.

By little guys I don’t mean men of small stature, kids, or people with tiny brains. I mean the average fellow who works hard, has to budget closely and dreams of things he would have if the boss suddenly became more liberal. The wife and kids have a first lien on everything he makes and whenever a wedge is cut out of the bank account for stamps, he stands naked before the judgment of his conscience.

To this “little guy” stamp collecting owes its biggest debt. He supports its clubs, its national societies and its dealers. He is the one who makes it a multi-million dollar business. He is the one who recruits its new followers and acts as its public relations agent. To him we owe much.

Let’s start repaying the “little guy.” The way to do this is to make it more fun for him to acquire stamps, to give him greater pleasure to own them and less pain to part with them when the time comes. Let’s spruce up stamp dealing, particularly in its selling, with attractive merchandising quarters and ample stocks to select from. Let’s put new gimmicks into stamp shows to make them as exciting as a circus. Finally, let’s cut out the bunk and hokum about disposing of your collection for a huge profit when we know that many collectors pay for their pleasure by selling for less than it costs them. The truth is always best. A change in “wanted to buy” advertising is called for so that our “little guy” will realistically buy, enjoy, and sell with the advance knowledge that every stamp or cover is not an Eldorado.

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