Thursday, August 27, 2015

Reading Is Fundamental

This is a cautionary tale whose moral is "Do You Homework". But I'm sure all of you do and I'm likely the only one to do something this dumb.

Anyway, that card is from the 2010 Allen & Ginter set obviously. When I was getting back into collecting in 2011 or so I discovered A&G and was instantly enamored. It was so unlike anything Topps had put out. I went back and looked through the checklists of the sets Topps had done beginning in 2006 and made a small want list.

In scanning the 2010 checklist the name Gary Stewart jumped out at me. As a long time fan of country music (well, old school country anyway) the name invoked some great memories. Gary Stewart was one of my favorite artists, a 70's icon for me. His songs of drinking, lost loves, sitting on barstools and the 'honky tonk life' combined with his incredible and distinctive vibrato voice made him someone whose albums I never tired of.

His Out of Hand album may be one of the best country albums ever recorded, it's certainly among my top three. I figure I saw him perform a dozen times in clubs large and small around Texas. Like almost all the country singers of that era his popularity waned as the genre got 'homogenized'. And, like a lot of the other artists of that generation, he fell victim to the demons of addiction and faded from the scene except to his hardcore fans (like me).

He was married for 43 years which would surprise anyone who heard his lyrics. But he was certainly a devoted husband. When his wife died in November of 2003 Gary Stewart decided he couldn't live without her and took his own life six days later. I've never stopped listening to his music.

When I saw what I thought was my Gary Stewart's name on that checklist I went online and found, not only the base card but a relic card as well!!! A piece of Gary Stewart's shirt. On a card! I was still sort of new to the concept of relics and I bought the card from one of the online stores (Dean's Cards maybe) that lists prices but doesn't show the card. I never did my due diligence and try to find it on eBay. If I had I would have seen immediately what I didn't find out until it was too late...
....that's a different Gary Stewart!

I'd never considered the possibility of there being another Gary Stewart, much less one who holds some sort of record for jumping on pogo sticks of all things. What a disappointment. But I stuck the card away in a box and forgot about it until I read Nacho Grande's post about his 2010 A&G relics collection. There was pogo sticking Gary on the list so this card will be on it's way to him. My mistake is Nacho's gain I guess. is Gary Stewart and his wife Mary Lou.

And here is 'Whisky Trip', the one song I would sing if you held a gun on me and forced me to do karaoke.

RIP, Gary Stewart. You were the best.

1 comment:

  1. Never heard of either of these Stewarts... but yours sounds 100x cooler.