The first basketball card I ever got excited about was a fairly common card from the 1993-94 Upper Deck set. It was a parallel in the set called Skylights and my card featured Patrick Ewing in the foreground with a shot of the New York City skyline circa 1993 in the background. I’ve always found the cards in this set to look cool, but especially the Ewing card. Maybe this is strange (I never pretend to be otherwise), but I can vividly recall that it was this Ewing Skylights card that got me really interested in collecting basketball cards.
As far as I know, its the only basketball card and perhaps the only sports card that features the skyline of NYC before the 9-11 terrorist attacks, so after 2001 this card took on new meaning for me. I lost this card long ago, but recently purchased a new one on eBay for $1.
Today marks the 19th anniversary of the 9-11 terrorist attacks, and we find ourselves in the midst of a new crisis that many of us are struggling with. If 9-11 taught me anything, it is that America is a strong country and despite our differences and these current horrible times (and there is so much to be upset and depressed about), we will emerge as stronger individuals and as a stronger nation.
I look forward to getting the Ewing Skylights card back into my collection to have a physical reminder not just of the card that got me into collecting, but also as a symbol of American resiliency. It’s like that old Converse commercial featuring Dwayne Wade (here) with the tag line “Fall seven times. Stand up eight.” No matter how hard or how often we get knocked down, we will always get back up.