Collector Spotlight: Robert Tibi
A Passionate Collector
August 16, 2015
Changes in the Hobby
Bushing, Dave. "Collecting Leather Football Helmets." Collecting Leather Football Helmets. Mears Online, 26 Mar. 2008. Web. 08 Aug. 2015.
Over 35 years, Bob has seen many changes in the hobby. In the late 1990's, the sports equipment collecting world changed dramatically with the founding of EBay. The online auction site provided collectors with the opportunity to purchase sports artifacts direct from owners worldwide. At the same time, EBay's competitive marketplace lead to the inflation of prices, pushing rare items out of reach of entry level collectors. Bob's collection exploded through the use of EBay and other auction sites. However, he also sees the negative side of these services, "EBay seems to have brought more frauds and reproductions (perhaps from the inability to actually handle the item before buying) and increased prices for items as a result of the bidding process, fees, etc." But, "were it not for EBay and the internet, many of the rarer items in my collection would not have been available to me and researching the items I have would have been far more tedious."
Nose masks and shoulder pads
An Understanding Spouse
Bob's massive collection consumes a large amount of real estate, which requires a spouse who accepts his passion. Bob's wife has expensive and time consuming hobbies of her own, so "both understand and support each other's activities."
A grouping of 4-strap and 8-spoke head harnesses
Football sweater and nose mask
Two flattop head harnesses and a Harvard flattop
Raincap & flattop head harnesses
"Overall, I believe that everybody needs to be able to have the ability to indulge their individual passions. However, when it comes to the specific details, a good policy is don't ask, don't tell."