1/23/02, 6:30 p.m. - I collect autographs - photos, scripts, pieces of paper signed by people of celebrity. I started this hobby many years ago, and it is something that I enjoy very much.

Some are relatively easy to get. Conventions would be one example of a place to get them easily. I've had the pleasure of meeting and getting autographs from people like Marina Sirtis (Troi), Walter Koenig (Bester/Chekov), and Brent Spiner (Data) among many others.

Some are rather difficult to obtain - Bridget Flanery and Marie Marshall are both good examples. They are relatively unknown actors, and don't generally do the "convention circuit" and without websites or contact information, you're pretty much out of luck.

Some are damn-near impossible, for reasons of biology. They are dead. I have quite a few autographs from people who are no longer with us. They include Anthony Quinn, Mark Lenard (Sarek), and Roy Brocksmith (Brother Alwyn).

Today, I add another to the last category - Esther Rolle. Esther is best-known for her character of Florida Evans, which began in Maude, and moved on to her own spin-off Good Times.

There are dealers who will go to celebrities (or their estates) and buy their cancelled checks. This is almost always after the checking account is closed. At least, I would hope so!

This offers a way to buy an autograph, and to ensure that it is real. It is also a way to collect something that is different, that few others would even think of to collect.

It also gives the collector a peek inside the life of someone they would never have the opportunity to normally see.

In September of 1974, Esther Rolle's sister, Rosanna Carter, made a guest appearance on Good Times. On January 7th of 1975 - 4 months later - Esther presented Rosanna with a check for $500.00 as a personal gift.

I never would have known this (and you probably wouldn't have either!) if not for a check that I now have. As I said, a peek inside the life.

Another check is from Lois Nettleton. Lois played Daggair in the funniest episode of Babylon 5, "Soul Mates".

She is a fabulous actress, and quite a caring daughter. In November of 1989, she had brand-new linoleum put in her mother's apartment, at a cost of $140.00.

I'll be scanning both of these, as well as several other autographs I've received recently. They include: Bridget Flanery, Katherine Sutherland, Meg Foster, Majandra Delfino, Shiri Appleby, Brian Thompson, Marie Marshall, Ed Wasser, Brad Renfro, Tom Cruise, and Brad Pitt. I'll most likely be doing that tomorrow.

And finally, a quick personal note - Happy Birthday, Kyle aka PsiKid!!!

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