That is, the first through the mail autograph request that Lucy has been asked to sign.
There have been many firsts in this past year of rediscovering baseball (we began in January 2008), but when we opened a packet from Mark at Stats on the Back earlier this week, there were two cardtastic moments we won't soon forget.
One was the first time Lucy has received a TTM (through-the-mail) autograph request, not for a note or a picture but for a baseball card. Mark, who designed the Lucy Takes the Field image on the righthand side of Dinged Corners, made up actual (cardboard) cards and sent them to us. The ever-thoughtful and generous Indian Cards Pretty Much Always has in the past sent a couple of those as cards for Lucy's binder, but this was the first time she received this:
which led to an adventure that included seeking a silver Sharpie to write on the dark background (which we learned from our own TTM experience with Curtis Granderson), and then practice-signing some cards. That was all fun and stuff...and then I flipped the card over to find this, the second first:
Now, a fellow with a name like Stats on the Back has to be thorough in these matters. Did you catch the text?
Let me interject here that in regard to "kindness," a truer word has never been spoken. Lucy's thoughtfulness, politeness, and empathy is wondrous to behold every day. The truthiness here made me momentarily verklempt, and that is the first verklemptitude I've ever experienced in regard to baseball cards.
As to Lucy's card-collecting sensibilities, as you know we are talking Mets, David Wright, several Asian players (named at right under What We Collect), midair moments, and, perhaps most of all, Smile Cards. We also received this from Mr. Stats:
And a truly classic Mets moment:
Look how great that is! Fantastic shot! Best of all it includes this pitch-perfect cartoon on the back:
Tom enjoys playing bridge, hahahahaa! And he's throwing an ace of spades! And he's a pitching ace! (Sure, he's a right-hander but let's not get picky.) Fantasmagorical.
We also received this history-lesson card of Mr. Fregosi, who was once, as you know, a Met. Do you notice anything unusual about anyone in the stands? For the solution, click here.
So, Lucy practiced her signature a couple of times on an expendable card (does everyone have a few dozen of these?):
and this is the final result, which we will mail to Mark, along with our thanks, tomorrow:
Oh, and this last photo is for Lucy, who always wants me to use the cartoon feature on Kodak Easyshare, because life is excellent as a cartoon. Why not turn that one into a cartoon, mom? Wouldn't that one be cool as a cartoon? How about a cartoon for that one? Here is a cartoon, Lucy:
"Childhood lasts all through life," said Gaston Bachelard, the French philosopher. Baseball cards help.