Like anyone who's been at this comic book collecting thing for a significant period of time (in my case over thirty years), I've had my share of both good and...well...not so good experiences.
Oh sure, there's the run-of-the-mill negative experiences like an eBay "sniper" snatching away a coveted comic book at the last possible second, or the constant hassle of making room for your collection. However, there are a handful of moments from my long collecting "career" that go beyond mundane frustrations and into the starkly HORRIFIC!
One such moment happened back in the early 90's at Fall-Con, the year's biggest comic book convention here in the Twin Cities area. I was busy locating and pricing various issues of Superman I needed, eventually coming across a copy of Superman #121 (1958).
The dealer priced it a bit on the high side, so before buying it I wanted to make sure it was graded accurately. Being a good little collector well-schooled in comic convention etiquette, I made sure to ask the dealer if I could remove the comic book from its bag. He reluctantly said "sure", and I carefully started removing it.
As I slowly slid the comic book from the bag, it stopped.
Not good. I flipped it over and EEEEYYYAAAAAHHHHHHHH!
The tape of the comic book bag flap had stuck firmly to the top edge of the cover...in full view of the dealer, no less!
Here...check out my boneheaded move with a Magni-View of the damage:
Needless to say, I immediately bought the issue from the equally-horrified dealer and skittered off red-faced and cursing myself profusely.
Yeah, in hindsight the damage wasn't all that bad. I've never been too wrapped up in buying top-condition books, but man....snagging the cover in front of that dealer still makes me cringe.
So, what's your comic book horror story? If you've got a good one, shoot me an email and I'll include it in a future installment of True Tales of (comic book) Horror!