Thursday, June 9, 2011
GET THEE TO THE BOOKIE PARLOR
Every nerd remembers their first step inside of a comic book shop.
It is not unlike Richard Dreyfuss looking into the mothership in Close
As a young nerdy lad, it blows your small mind that such a shop could even
Why it most be the most magical place to work ever!
My first shop was called The Bookie Parlor in Dayton, Ohio.
I would beg my parents to stop there every time we drove by it.
It had Spider-Man, Superman, Batman and the Hulk painted on the side of the
It also looked a little shady. I must gain entrance!
When I walked through the doors of The Bookie Parlor
It was not unlike entering the hallowed halls of Valhalla!
The small shop was overflowing with four-color treasure!
On the wall behind the counter was
Amazing Fantasy #15
Fantastic Four #1
The Incredible Hulk #1
Suoerman and Batman battling the Axis on the cover of various WW2-era comics!
I had only seen pictures of them in my newly acquired Overstreet price guide!
I was feeling light-headed!
I was still obsessed with and asked they had any for sale.
The old man with his funny-looking ears rose from behind the counter.
"Come over here, kid" the old man growled.
He then produced a copy of Richie Rich #1 from a glass case!
I couldn't believe my eyes!
You know how rare it is to see the first of anything when you are busy doing
things for the first time yourself?
I had come to believe that Spidey and Batman and Popeye and Richie Rich had just
appeared out of the ether, and yet,
Here I was face to face with evidence that they had all STARTED somewhere.
"How much is it, sir?' I dared to ask the gruff old coot.
"One-hundred dollars, son. You got a hundred bucks on ya?' he said winking at my
The old man had crushed my 8 year old soul.
I would never have a hundred bucks.
I would have to settle for a reprint of that first issue which I could at least
read without worrying about decreasing the book's value.
I may not have left with the first issue of Richie Rich under my arm
But I did see something that I never thought I'd ever see.
The old man with the funny ears had successfully planted the collecting chip
into yet another
young nerd's hard wiring.