September 10, 2018

I thought it was just a slump, just a drought – didn’t know there was a named malady for it. Seems Chuck (that’s ‘Sir Charles’ to those of you not in the inner circle) and I have Acute Win Deficiency!

I Have AWD!It’s been a while since I’ve picked up a collection with some significant issues. Oh, there have been a few promising phones calls and one lady did show up with some Golden Age Batman comics and said there were more, but she did not return. From what I gathered, these actually belonged to her Dad (probably older then me!), who never threw anything away, and she and her brother had decided that it was time to declutter. When I offered to come to her house, it was immediately turned down – her Dad didn’t allow anyone into his home. That was weeks ago and I have a feeling that Pops caught on to the kids plan.

A little over a week ago, a caller said he had some comics from the 1960s that he collected as a kid and wanted someone to appraise them or give advice. He claimed to have the first Spider-Man comic. He said he thought it was a 1.5 to 2.0. Sure enough, he came in shortly and among the 15 or so comics he had (turns out, that was all he had) was a copy of Amazing Fantasy #15!

I Have AWD!Yes, sir, he did indeed have the first appearance of Spider-Man! And it was the worst copy I’ve ever seen! Now granted, over the roughly 42 years I’ve been buying and selling funny books, I’ve only owned two copies, but I have seen many others. This one had to have been stored in a hot, dry attic for years–extremely brittle with many pieces already having fallen away from the rest. Fortunately, it was in an over-sized bag and could be removed without bumping into the sides. However, when I removed it, more pieces fell onto the counter. The covers were split in two along the spine and off. I guess one could call it complete? I replaced the book and placed the larger fallen pieces in with it.

My appraisal and advice to the owner: Maybe a 0.5 grade, not a 1.5 to 2.0, and as much as I prefer to not slab a comic, this needed to be submitted to preserve it and be certified, should he decide to sell it. With a guide value of $8,000 in 2.0 ($375,000 in 9.2), I can imagine someone still ponying up $1,500 – $2,000 for this copy just to have an AF 15!

I Have AWD!And the other comics? Not much – nothing I wanted. There was a brown, brittle copy of Amazing Spider-Man #10 and a copy of the first annual whose one corner had been enjoyed by a rodent sometime in the past. The owner was apprehensive about sending it away to be graded and I mentioned that CGC would be set-up at the Keystone show in Philly shortly and at the Baltimore Con later this month. The big dummy that I am, I forgot to take a pic of the book for you guys. Sorry! Not to miss an opportunity, after the gentleman left, Dave scooped up the remaining small pieces still on the counter and is now the proud owner of part of an AF 15! Hmmm, I wonder what CGC would do with the separated pieces sent in? When I showed the bag that Dave put his in to a couple of customers, one suggested that he put them in his cereal and eat it. The other, perhaps a little less conservative, thought he should roll a doobie and smoke them!

An offer I made on two boxes of lower grade, mostly VG Bronze issues was accepted. I bought the bulk of a collection from one of our members a couple of years ago, but these were ones he had already given to a nephew. Evidently, the nephew was no longer interested in the comics and asked his uncle to now sell them for him. What a great uncle! I plan on bothering to bag some of them and bring in soon. The vast majority will make decent “dollar books”.

The auction circuit has been weak, and all I could score was a box of Mad magazines.

Oh, well, if things don’t improve, I guess I can always go to the broadcast booth. I understand I’m qualified.