From Ocean County Observer –

A lot of people collect things. In general, things that people collect, collect dust, unless the collector is serious and maintains his collection.

A collectible that has made a comeback is the bobblehead doll. Especially now that the faces of so many political figures as well as the usual cartoon characters and sports stars have been replicated onbobblehead dolls.

I don’t remember bobbleheads from my childhood, and thought they were something that appeared in the 1960s, but I was wrong. I googled “bobblehead” and found that the earliest known reference to abobblehead is thought to be in Nikolai Gogol’s 1842 short story “The Overcoat,” in which the main character’s neck was described as “like the necks of plaster cats which wag their heads.”

According to Wikipedia, “the modern bobblehead first appeared in the 1950s. By 1960, Major League Baseball had gotten in on the action and produced a series of papier-mache bobblehead dolls, one for each team, all with the same cherubic face. The World Series held that year brought the first player-specific baseball bobbleheads, for Roberto Clemente, Mickey Mantle, Roger Maris, and Willie Mays, still all with the same face.

“Over the next decade, after a switch in materials from paper-mache to ceramic, bobbleheads would be produced for other sports, as well as cartoon characters. One of the most famous bobbleheads of all time also hails from this era: The Beatles bobblehead set, which is a valuable collectible today.”

Someone in the office was talking about the “Hoarders” show on TV. Can you imagine the home of abobblehead hoarder? There would be bobbleheads on every shelf and surface. Picture a stray breeze generated by someone opening a window or a door, and imagine all those little heads bobbing up and down at once.

How creepy is that?

Sounds like a subject for one of those cheesy Troma horror films, in the genre of “Attack of the Killer Tomatoes” and “2,000 Maniacs.” In the film, the victims of the mad scientist who runs the bobbleheadplant are turned into bobbleheads.

There actually are a couple of “Revenge of the Bobbleheads” homemade videos on YouTube if anyone is inclined to look.

I wonder how many people are still collecting Beanie Babies? I thought of that while watching the silly commercial in which a giant, pink, plush bunny is used instead of a wrecking ball to try to demolish a building.

Turning Beanie Babies into rampaging monsters would require a lengthy and probably costly amount of stop-animation. Also, it would take a lot of Beanie Babies to do any damage. Then again, the Killer Tomatoes managed, until a pop song called “Puberty Love” did them in.

I guess I sort-of collect something. I have a lot of DVDs, including some horror flicks — but no Troma films, thanks. The campiest, and one of the oldest in the collection is “Horror Hotel.” “Curse of the Demon” is another. Dana Andrews stars in that one, remember him?

I have a slew of old movies on videotape. Some of them have been copied to DVD. I’ll bet it won’t be long before DVDs also are obsolete and movies come on little spools of wire or very tiny disks.

That’s the trouble with collecting. If you’re going to do it, make sure what you collect is going to last and that years from now it will still be of value — like teapots.

Gannett Co., Inc. – Newspaper Division