I just got a call at the office from a man who is a new customer. He had a question about something to do with one of our online sales and we started talking about the snow in Boston where he lives. Out of the blue I told him I went to Tufts University in Medford for a time and we realized that we were in the same class there. Such coincidences are always memory factories for me, summoning up forgotten images of dorm rooms, friends, classes and parties. It made me realize that one of the things I like best about stamps and the stamp business is how it jogs the memory. Usually when I see a rare stamp, one that I haven’t seen in a while, I get instant, vivid memories of the previous ones I’ve seen. Often, the memories are fleshed out. I see the person who showed me the stamp or who I sold it to. I see the centering and perfs of the previous ones and how they differ from the current example. This poignancy and vividness of memory is remarkable and my wife tells me very selective. Otherwise how could I remember a nuance of a stamp I sold thirty years ago and forget to go to the hardware store each Sunday.

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