Tetsuya Tsutsumi / Kamen rider card(11)

Then,the time had come.
“I am looking for the 46th <Kemen-rider card> of the 14 stations edition. If you bring it to me, I will buy it for 100,000 yen.”

 

Mr. Tsutumi appealed to the viewers.
As people generally cannot understand what 14 stations means, he explained it in detail on the program.

 

It was Mr. Tsutsumi that classified the Kamen rider cards, and established the classification of the 14 stations and 25 stations.
It was Mr.Tsutsumi that advocated the concept of “lacking cards”; he put forth that the 46th card of 14 stations is missing.
Mr.Tsutsumi found this problem and asked himself why it was missing: “This card is a lucky card…That’s why the 46th is missing, isn’t it?”He tried to drag this card out of the darkness using money amounting to 100,000 yen.

 

As he predicted, it was a lucky card.
It was the moment when all his hardships were rewarded.

 

To drag an unseen card onto the stage, and to complete the systematization of the Kamen rider cards….
It was such an event that was occurring on the TV program at that time.

Tetsuya Tsutsumi / kamen rider card (12)

Mr.Tsutsumi says:

“The 41st card has a very cool photograph of the Kamen rider’s upper body, taken from the front.Many children might have wanted to keep this card at hand instead of exchanging it for an album. Therefore, the 41st of 14 stations cards still remain, although very few.

 

But the 46th’s photo is simple. Children would send it to Calbee (to exchange for an album) without a hesitation, I guess.”

 

     the 46th,  the 41st

 

Indeed, I think that the 46th is a little short of energy to attract kids.

 

However, the influence of the TV program “Kantei-dan” was great.Only one month later, in a different TV program called “Hammer Price”, one of <the 46th of 14stations> was bidden for 1 million yen.

Tetsuya Tsutsumi / Kamen rider card (13)

“Twenty years after that, I bought the 46th card of 14stations for 200,000 yen.”

My husband who was with us suddenly interrupted.”

But I immediately sold it for 500,000 yen,” he continued.

“You sold it?!”I cried out loud, unintentionally.
“Well, I thought it’s not necessary for me to have it, because Mr.Tsutsumi had it.”
“Um…”It was a completely correct judgment from the viewpoint of our family budget… but I was slightly ashamed to hear that then, which is a somewhat scary thought on reflection.

However, since that TV program < Kanteidan>, a price of  200,000 yen or  500,000 yen for a single card could be thought as just natural.
Mr.Tsutsumi says:”Generally, the Rider cards are printed on a large sheet of paper and are cut into 110 pieces. It is said that a sheet of paper with the 231st~the 255th card was found un-cut. It is priced at about 1 million yen, I hear.”

“I also heard that there is one sheet of large paper with only lucky cards printed on it. Then, the theory that there exists 2or4 lucky cards per 110 cards, a single sheet of paper, will be disproved.”

“Some cards in the TR-9 edition are not discovered yet, and it is said that KinKees(a famous collector’s shop in Osaka) is looking for it for 900,000yen…I cannot keep up with them,because people now are willing to pay way more.”
It seems that the amount of money that current card enthusiasts cast has become extraordinary and beyond Mr.Tsutsumi’s forecast.

Tetsuya Tsutsumi / Kamen rider card (14)

Now, Mr.Tsutsumi recollects.”These years, I have been fighting to raise the value of paper articles.”

 

The 46th of 14stations in the < Kanteidan >—that was the completion of his systematization, and on the other hand, the beginning of his challenging of the public over the value of the Kamen-Rider cards.

 

Anyhow,the price of cards was too cheap.
They got lumped together and were sold for a little sum.
Generally, tin toys and die-cast metal toys were expensive before then, but there were no collectors that paid as much for  cards.”My attempt at that time was to give cards a considerable price.”

 

The thinking that “It’s okay that they are cheap” was out of the question.
When the prices were low, it led to the articles going into oblivion with being known.
It was necessary to put noticeable prices and drag them up onto the front stage.
To improve the value of these ephemeral, sweet cards and to give them their fair rights to go down in history. That was  what Mr.Tsutsumi was trying to do.

“There are people who criticize me for raising the price, but without high prices, the article can’t be recognized as one of value. An article comes out onto center stage by setting a price. It will stay in this world.”
“As for the 46th card of the 14 stations which was never found, it came out into the world solely because there was a  price of 100,000 yen.”

Eventually, the prices rose beyond Mr.Tsutsumi’s expectation.
The value of the 46th card of the 14 stations jumped up to 1 million yen just after that, and its value did not change even  after 20 years either. Also, there are enthusiasts still searching for a rare card every day, willing to pay several hundred  thousand yen for it.
Mr.Tsutsumi thinks.The current enthusiast who is willing to pay  1,500,000 yen for a single Kamen rider card exists because of  the 100,000 yen price tag he first set.

The 46th of 14 stations…Everything began with this piece of card.
A fight over the value of Kamen rider cards.
Setting a value to leave them in the world.
So that the existence of the Rider card will not be buried in history.

Tetsuya Tsutsumi / Kamen rider card (15)

My husband told me that he has a fake version of the 46th of 14 stations card in his card album.
His friend copied both sides of the said card in full color and skillfully pasted them on an actual Rider card whose surfaces had been peeled off.
“Call it an <original card>, aha?”
“You fool.”
“I remember that my friend and I used to be excited over a plan to ‘shop-plant’”
“Do you mean shoplifting?”
“No, No! On the contrary, we’ll leave this card at a collestor’s shop secretly.Then, someone who knows this 46th will be really surprised!”
…You utter fool.

 

To return to the subject, I am going to talk about the card that Mr. Tsutsumi has been valuing for a long time.Indeed, it is very rare, but it’s different from the 46th of 14 stations that has molded history. It is rather related to his personal attachment to the card.That card is an “error card”

Tetsuya Tsutsumi / Kamen rider card (16 )

“Error cards” are most often made by misprinting.Some cards have different numbers with the same photograph.Some cards are printed upside down on the front or back side.Some cards have photographs on both sides.Some cards have one side on which nothing is printed.

However, some of the last type, where one side is blank, may be due to a different reason.It is because printing on cards without a coating can easily be erased with an eraser.Mr.Tsutsumi once created such a card carelessly.

“On the Mincho-typeface edition card of HITODENJAH, there was a black stain on the monster’s lap.I tried to erase the stain, but then, the other parts were erased too.”
・・・Zounds.

Later, Kamenrider cards with coarting came out, such a tragedy ended.

Some error cards are man-made articles in this way.
By a kid without ill will, or by a grown-up with ill will.
But the error card for which Mr. Tsutsumi feels attachment  is different from those one.

 

 

 

Both a photograph and a commentary are printed on the one side,and the other side is blank. It’s very rare. Besides,it is said the most rare case that the photo accords with the commentary.
In the photo, six fake Kamen-riders come on , which is very attractive.
Furthermore,this is a luckycard!

Mr.Tsutumi has been keeping this card since his childhood.

Tetsuya Tsutsumi / Kamen rider card (17)

Mr.Tsutsumi was a child who loved Kamen rider cards  above all things.

 

When he was in fifth or six grade, in the days when the cards were just released, he bought a whole box of the Kamen rider snack with two other friends. He might be a slightly fortunate child in this regard.He didn’t know what to do with one cardboard box worth of snacks, and secretly threw them away by a railway track.It was a sheer waste, on reflection. It was snowing incessantly then, he remembers.On one occasion, the shop lady saw him throwing away the snacks and told his mother. So he was prohibited from playing outside for one month.

 

It is well known that children who took only the cards and got rid of the snacks appeared one after another. It became a social problem in those days.Mr. Tsutsumi was one child who actually did so in real life.

Tetsuya Tsutsumi / Kamen rider card (18)

Why was Mr.Tsutsumi so crazy about Kamen-rider cards?
In a preface of his work “Kamen Rider Card”, he touched on the reason.

 

“Of course the TV program <Kamen rider>itself was charming.
But besides that, it was interesting to collect cards with sequential numbers on them, which had never been seen as articles for children before.
Furthermore, the information of the cards was very attractive.It acted as an advanced notice of the televised program for us.”

“To collect all the cards consecutively is the most interesting, but it was also very difficult.This is because, as the televised program reached its finale, the cards were not issued as much nor later reprinted because the snack maker, following along with the TV production, began to prepare for a transition to the next program “Kamen-rider V3”.
In addition to the charm of the sequential cards, “Different kinds of cards with the same number” were interesting, Mr.Tsutsumi noted.The cards have different compositions, photographs, designs, text, etc. even though they have the same number.

“The more I became enthusiastic for them, the deeper I was hooked onto this profound world,” he wrote in his book.

 

546 pieces of cards were affected by the tangle and mixture of the producers, the broadcast stations, the snack-maker, and the printing works.A small labyrinth-like universe, different from that of the actual televising, had emerged there.

Tetsuya Tsutsumi / Kamen rider card (19 )

Children who only took the card and threw away the snack appeared one after another, and drew the attention of the public.
Calbee, the snack maker, held off issuing new kinds of cards for two or three months.This happened just before the first editions of the 14 and 25 stations were over and the release of 106th was to be started. In the meantime, the 1st to the 105th cards kept coming out repeatedly.

 

Mr.Tsutsumi was a 6th grader then.
He had finished gathering all the cards until the 105th long ago.
For the bitter months when new kinds did not appear, Mr.Tsutsumi continued to patiently buy the cards and observed the differences carefully.

When the new kinds of card finally began to be released again, the Kamen rider card market became heated up. A few months later, the 6th grade Mr. Tsutsumi bought cards looking for the 500th numbered cards. The error card was included among them.

Mr.Tsutsumi thinks that it was crucial for him to be a sixth grader then.He was older than most other children who were  hooked onto the Rider cards. He wasn’t so childish that all he could do was to just gather the cards.
His personal nature played a part too. He was endowed with the disposition to pursue a phenomena to its depth.

14stations, 25stations, Mincho-typeface, the Gothic-typeface….All the paths to systematization were already inside of Mr.Tsutsumi in his primary school days. The interest towards error cards was growing as well.Any child might come across an error card if they buy a lot of snacks.However, most of them would throw away such cards in disappointment, considering them queer.

But Mr.Tsutsumi had kept it with him carefully.
Like an entomologist, he intuitively felt the atypical card as a different species , and set a high value on it as a special one.

This card was the starting line for Mr.Tsutsumi.

This Monogatari

Finis

Self Introduction

I have lived as the wife of an enthusiast for many years.
I have been looked on by my parents and siblings with pity.

I have been looked down on because my lifestyle is eccentric.
Whenever we take a family trip, I must follow my husband to some collector’s shop.

I continued eating a lot of potato chips which had been sold with cards for several months.

When I look back on it, I can surely assert that there were almost nothing but negatives in everyday life.


My husband and I do not have children.Besides, I have a basically careless character. So I cannot compare myself with others.
But, all things considered, I was very annoyed that our living space was too small. Even the restroom is tightly packed with articles.When we sleep, a heap of books and magazines towers over us.

During the earthquake disaster of March 11, 2011, we were fortunately on an outing. But when we came home, we were terrified to see that several layers of books which had fallen from the bookshelves were scattered across the entire room.

The wife of a enthusiast risks her life.

Although the flow of a river does not die out, the flowing water is changed each time.

A house is a temporary thing, and it is pointless to suffer sorrow or joy for it… (from “Houjou-ki” by a recluse of the Middle Ages in Japan, Kamo-no-Chomei)

Once I came to think the house to be a trifling matter, my husband’s strange deep attachment to articles became rather funny to me. He would say nonsense such as “this is for watching, this is for preserving, this is for exchanging…” , which sounded like the cry of a rare animal. I didn’t get so angry. With this and that, I have been coexisting with his enthusiastic life.

But since the time of the earthquake disaster in 2011, I came to feel a strange desire to learn something new, and last year, I made up my mind and began a part-time job at Mandarake which my husband visits frequently.
As is generally known, Mandarake is the industry-leading dealer of secondhand articles, mainly old comics.They cover a wide range of articles, comics, animated cartoons, model kits, soft vinyl figures, superalloy toys, games, fan magazines, and fan goods. These are subculture articles which mainly arose in the Japanese consumer society after the Second World War.

Working as a careless cashier, I look at many articles flowing in or out of this shrine of subculture every day.The Tale of Genji and the Heike Monogatari, even Waka (a 31-syllable Japanese traditional poem) were once subcultures at first.Sometimes the scene of cherry trees in full blossom blooming in a village which became uninhabited due to the radioactivity of that earthquake flashes across my mind. I wonder each time what things will survive in the next era.

Meanwhile, I noticed that the act of buying and selling articles includes the fight to make the articles survive in days to come.

Then, when I looked back again, there were a lot of people who do such a thing around myself, including my husband.

They bet their life to believe in the value of the articles, create the value of articles, ruining their own lives in the process.

I asked them to talk.
About their enthusiasm for articles shaking their soul.

About their feelings running toward articles with all their energies.

I am going to leave their story in this blog.

While, in this invisible world out of order, thinking of the thing called the future.