Sunday, May 26, 2013

Why Not Be A Toy Collector?

This weeks League of Extraordinary Bloggers asks the question, Why?

This is a question that could have endless possibilities and is one I had an immediate idea for. I thought about this assignment all week and thought I may be the only one to answer the question this way. However, Mike from the Sexy Geeks House of Swag pretty much had the same idea.

I often joke with Brian from Cool and Collected that we were twin brothers separated at birth, but Mike may be another long lost brother as often as we are all the same page.

So, here's my go at answering the question "Why" as in, why I'm a toy collector?

First off, I am like Peter Pan. I don't want to grow up. My toys reflect a time of innocence. A time of no responsibility, no stress, and no worry. Not that I am ever one to shun my responsibilities, but spending time in the toy room puts me in a state of bliss. A moment of clarity, A moment of peace.

The biggest concern I can think of as a kid,was my homework done? I still remember my Dad coming home from work and asking, "Is your homework done?" and if my answer was ,"No." It was met with a, "You better get hot." That alone could be what has made me the responsible adult, husband, father, and son that I am today, but toy collecting is my outlet that takes some weight of my shoulders for a while.

Star Wars Celebration IV program and Carrie Fisher autograph.  Photo: Batcave Toy Room
Secondly, toy collecting empowers me. While at Star Wars Celebration IV, and waiting in line to meet Carrie Fisher, I waited in line behind a psychologist and we started up a conversation about the entire phenomena of Star Wars, pop culture, and collecting on a psychological level. I asked him from a psychology point of view of why he collected and his answer provided an explanation into part of my own obsessions.

For him, as well as me, it was about being able to now get whatever you wanted. You didn't have to wait for your allowance. You longer had to wait for your birthday, Christmas, or ask Mom or Dad if you can get something.

I remember that empowering feeling when I received my first paycheck and immediately running down to Page After Page Comics and buying a bunch of vintage Batman and Detective Comics and I could just do it. I didn't have to ask or save up for it. I held the power to choose whatever my heart desired.

Toy collecting however has had its share of shame over the years. From friends to family, hell even neighbors, who thought I was weird for collecting toys and comic books once I reached high school and beyond. Still to this day I almost get embarrassed to let anyone know that I collect pop culture collectibles and vintage toys and not to even mention the beginnings of my Cosplay involvement, but I have had enough of that.

It's great to know that I am not alone in this passion. That so many others are just like me. To the point we could all be clones. I feel it's time to be proud to be a collector or a geek even. That it's time, for lack of a better term, to come out of the closet and not ask, "Why I'm a toy collector," but to ask, "Why not be a toy collector?"

Others asking Why?
About the author: John Sholtz is an avid toy collector and the interim editor of the Batcave Toy Room due to the abrupt death of Bruce Wayne. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter at, Facebook, Google+ and Linkedin.


  1. Why do I collect John? Many reasons but mostly the enjoyment I get out of it. Because of my toy collecting and fandom I been able to connect with some amazing people such as yourself and that to me is just a wonderful thing.

    1. I could continue on this topic forever and may have to expand this article some day, but like you, it has been an amazing 4 years and I am glad to have met so many folks such as yourself. Thanks for being a loyal reader after all this time.

  2. John, great blog post. You elaborated what I was trying to convey a lot more eloquently than I could have ever imagined. Great job my friend.

    If I could even be mentioned in the same breath as you and Brian, that to me is a true honor as I try to base how I go about collecting around the principals you guys have put before us. Thanks for the complement, if I'm a long lost brother to you guys, I could have asked for better role models.

    1. Thanks Mike. When I read your article I was thinking you were taking the words right out of mouth.

      You are definitely one of us sir and are a role model in your own right. We are here to learn from each other and I enjoy your site thouroughly.

  3. I just wish I held onto my collection as a youth. I had almost everything.

    1. Oh, man. That's rough. I am still working on getting back things that were broken or thrown out of my collection. It's a work in progress.

  4. such a fantastic post. there should be absolutely no shame in embracing the things we love [and love to collect]. and while it seems like being a "geek" is all the rage these days, there's still this weird stigma for people who enjoy collecting toys/comics/etc.

    collector-pride, man. i love it.

    1. I agree sir. Time for a coming out. Geek and proud.


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