Since I’ve collected lots of things over the years, I’ve always feared theft. For some reason, I’ve never had that concern regarding my autograph collection. Most of them are stored in boxes, and I doubted anybody would find them or if they did...would care about a bunch of hard-to-read scribbles on index or business cards.
When I was younger, I framed all my good items. Record albums, old Fillmore concert posters...so I doubted anybody would come into my house and swipe them. I figured if burglars broke in, they’d grab my 8-track stereo and TV set. They wouldn’t worry about framed things on the wall. I’m guessing thieves would walk by a Jackson Pollock painting looking for a jewelry box in the bedrom (not that I have a Pollock painting, or a woman with jewelry, but...).
I saw this story making the news, and it got me thinking about thefts again.
In Washington, a man named Richard Bates (no jokes here, please) came home to find collectibles missing from his shelves. I immediately imagined a house that looked like Steve Carell’s in The 40 Year Old Virgin.
Someone from the dark side broke in, and stole $30,000 worth of his collection. Although I was immediately wondering something. Why didn’t they steal his entire collection? It makes me think that there’s a slight possibility we might find out the dude made a bogus claim, I don’t know.
Bates said he has his life savings in his collectables, and some of the toys he’s had to buy over and over (I’m not sure why that is). He also mentioned they bring him a lot of happiness, which is something all of us collectors can understand (although my mom always asks how I can get enjoyment from a stash of guitars and framed posters that are stored in her garage, but I digress).
Of course, all the news agencies jumped on this story. With the new movie around the corner, it was perfect.
They were also able to show his few Star War tattoos.
I think George Lucas or someone, should reach out and give him a tour of their studios, and a signed poster. That would be as valuable as all the crap...err, collectables….that he lost. It would also be the experience of a lifetime.
[Side note: actor John Boyega, who was so much fun in the British sci-fi comedy “Attack the Block” was at the San Diego Film Festival, and signed lots of Star Wars memorabilia as he was walking the red carpet. Attend film festivals, it’s a great way to meet these folks]
So, have any of you had to deal with a theft?