I recently wrote about a customer whose cat ate part of his order form. I had a follow up email from another collector. Here it is:
“I am a stamp collector and stumbled upon your site a while back and enjoy your commentary articles. Your recent post titled Dog ate my Homework brought a smile to my face. About 20 years ago I kept my extra stock in a stock book and on some stock cards in desk drawer in our home office. One day while I was gone, my wife took a phone call in the office and opened that particular drawer to use as a foot rest while on the phone, then finished her call and left the room (and the drawer open). A while later our husky pup Taylor moseyed into the room and apparently the glue from the stamps or something caught her fancy and she helped herself to one of the stock cards from the open drawer and munched on several of the stamps. Luckily they were late issue US – nothing valuable, but of course my wife was upset that she’d left the drawer open and the stamps were ruined. Luckily at the time I salvaged a few of the stamps, torn corners and tooth marks – not really sure why then. Well, that old pup passed away a couple of years ago at the ripe old age of 16 and I tell you now those couple of stamps with her tooth marks – a $1 Bernard Revel, a 50 cent Chester Nimitz and a $2 Sea Plane are probably the most prized stamps in my collection.”
To any other collector or dealer, these would appear to be damaged stamps. If I saw them, I would think, “Why in the world did they save this trash?” But to this collector, the sentimental value is enormous.
We probably all have one or more items in our collections that do not have much monetary value. But it’s an item from a deceased stamp buddy, a pet who chewed on some stamps, or whatever the circumstance is. No amount of money will ever replace those stamps.