Monday, March 18, 2013

New beginnings

Hi everyone.  If you're reading this, you probably know me.  If you don't, then apparently word travels fast.

In a few weeks I'm moving to the Dallas area-- Irving/Arlington to be exact.  Tomorrow my wife and I are checking out apartments and on 4/1/13 I start a new job as a photo editor for Panini.  Yes, that's right, I'm one of the lucky ones to get a job in the card industry.

Anyways, I've been collecting autographs for a good ten years now.  Back in Boston when I was getting my journalism degree at Emerson College, I started hitting up hotels and the then-Fleet Center for hockey autographs.  It was fun and I got to meet a lot of players and collectors, many of the latter of whom I'm still in contact with today.  Eventually I expanded out to baseball and the occasional bit of basketball.

After graduating, I moved to Wichita Falls, TX to try my hand at hockey broadcasting from 2006 through 2013.  After seven years though, I decided it was time for a change.  I love hockey, I love broadcasting, but when you're doing it for a junior level team, you end up wearing a lot of different hats.  In addition to broadcasting and media relations, I was the office receptionist, webmaster, writer, occasionally was asked for my scouting opinions, and assisted with sales, marketing, public relations, and community relations.  As related as journalism, PR, and commentary can be, the three are in all honesty nearly total opposites.  The journalist in me wants to provide the facts, period.  The analyst/commentator in me is loaded with opinions and brutal honesty.  The PR side though required that I sometimes put a positive spin on things-- trying to do so in a game you lost 9-0 is hard, and nearly impossible when all you saw were forwards who weren't shooting, defensemen who weren't stopping the opposition, and a goalie who may as well have had a hole in his chest.  Fortunately, those games were relatively few and far between.

And so, here I am, moving two hours to the Dallas area for a new job.  It's still media-related, it's still sports-related, and yet it hopefully will be a completely different beast than my previous job. And I am quite okay with that.

Along with the move to DFW, I finally will have a little more time for autograph hounding, sending requests for autographs through the mail (or TTM in the hobby lingo), and getting out and just having fun.  I can visit different restaurants instead of just the same old chains.  Maybe I'll join a band.  Maybe I can find a recreational indoor soccer league.  Or hockey.  Or wiffleball.  I can bike more, walk more, eat better, and hopefully drop about 50 pounds.

Most of this blog will detail my hounding and TTM'ing.  Of course I'm sure I'll end up off on some random tangents about the card and autograph hobbies, sports in general, and my life in general.  But such is the nature of my blog, and the nature of my writing style.  You'll get used to it, I'm sure.

Frankly, more than anything I'm excited.  I've moved twice before in my adult life (Cleveland to Boston for college, then Boston to Wichita Falls) and it's always exciting, if not somewhat anxiety-inducing.  But I'm ready for it.

I probably won't be saying much here in the next few weeks.  I have four more games to call for the NAHL's Wichita Falls Wildcats, then basically a single day-- Easter, at that-- to start a move to the Metroplex.  But if all goes as I hope it will, I'll have my first hounding session on April 6 as the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim of Orange County of the State of California of the United States of America of the Continent of North America of the Planet Earth take on the Rangers.  But once that happens, prepare for the floodgates to open.  I'll detail the successes, the failures, the stories, and random lists of who I send to via mail and who I receive back.  I might even dig a bit into my collection as it stands now and the stories behind my favorite items.

Anyways, welcome.  I hope you get something from all this, and that at the very least, I entertain you for a while.


  1. Looking forward to reading how you do over there in DFW. Any trips for the Stars or Western Conference foes planned?

  2. Unfortunately I probably won't be able to do much hockey at first until I learn more about what hotels teams are at, how to get to them, and how I can do it best around my work schedule. But if the Stars have any weekend practices, I plan to hit those up for sure. I've been to two practices a few years ago (December 2008) and flat-out killed at them.

    I'll be about a mile from the players' entrance to the ballpark, so I plan to hit baseball really hard at first. Maybe some football too. Maybe even basketball eventually.

  3. Hey Drew looking forward to following your blog... I know we did not see eye to eye the other day but I think that is what makes this hobby cool. Good luck on your move and be safe..


  4. No worries, debate is 90% of being a sports fan!

    And Crosby is still better than Stamkos.