When I started really collecting SLU's on a more serious basis, my friends took notice and interest as well. Soon after, my main group of friends were all in as well. Now that's cool and all, and it gave us even more things in common with each other, but my 10 year old brain quickly realized that they were no longer just my friends....but my competition as well. It wasn't as bad as it seemed though. We rarely crossed paths on the SLU hunt, and for the most part I was still the most active out of them all. We did help each other out and if there was doubles of figures we bought, we would buy them and give each other a chance to buy them. It in actuality was a good system...except for one time where it made me the most jealous kid in the world. My favorite player is Penny Hardaway, and back in 96 he was still in his prime and one of the biggest superstars in the NBA. It was impossible to locate a SLU of him, and it was one I wanted soooooooo bad. Finding a Penny here in Corpus was just not going to happen...ever..pipe dream....until it did. It wasn't me that found it though, oh no, of course not, my friend Javy found it at the local Venture. At first I thought he was kidding, how in the world did a Penny Hardaway manage to make it alllllll the way to a retail store here in Corpus??? Sure enough, he was telling the truth. I was sooooooooooo upset at him (unrightfully so, I mean, what are you gonna do LEAVE IT THERE??). He knew it was my favorite player and that I had wanted it so bad, and here he came Johnny Come Lately and he gets the biggest find in the history of lineups in Corpus Christi (hey, I'm channeling little kid mode again, cut me some slack!)! I was beyond jealous and frustrated. I never wanted to speak to him again (that lasted like 9 or 10 minutes before I asked him to come over and play some video games, lol). My Penny Hardaway...my holy grail...hanging in someone else's room!! The gall!!!! The story ended up ok, as for Christmas my parents bought me the figure (they had to pay the flea market price). It would've been much sweeter to find it, but I didn't care...it was finally ALL MINE!!! I didn't let it out of my sight all Christmas day, and when I finally hung it up, it just would stare it in awe. I still have the figure (along with all my Penny's) hanging in on my bedroom wall and when I stare and look at it now, it reminds of just how obsessed I was with that particular figure!
The "controversial" Penny Hardaway 96 SLU