I sat at my usual outdoor table at Pastry Art, sipping my cup of Joe. I also have a bad habit of having a saucer-sized M&M cookie with it. Anthony sat at the next table. I had seen him before, so it was time; I introduced myself and asked to meet him and make a portrait. “Naw, man, I'm not interested in having my picture made. Nice to meet you, but no pictures.” I wished him a good day and sat down to drown my sorrows.
A minute later he called over and said, “OK, dude, what do you do with the pictures?” So I told him. “Aw, OK man, you seem like a nice guy. I never let no one take pictures of me, but go ahead.” Wasting no time, I did. While the camera was still up, a guy stopped, greeted Anthony, and shook his hand. As I sat back down, they were talking baseball cards and serious money. Huh?
Anthony has a small pension from the military. And a fetish for sports memorabilia. He has storage units filled with cards in both Sarasota and Cape Coral, autographed baseballs, photos of stars, etc. The spring baseball training season had begun and the Baltimore (Sarasota), Orioles were out of town. That's why Anthony was available. Otherwise he would have been at his kiosk at the Ed Smith Stadium, selling memorabilia. My good fortune.