It's the perfect Throwback Thursday image. Before there was IUSA, we just referred to the convention as PPA National. That's my Dad on the left hanging with his old buddy, Don Blair. But this image, thanks to Sunny Sommers, brings back one of my favorite Don Blair stories. And, if I've shared it before in a post and don't remember, it's all due to aging...LOL
This was taken at one of the early PPA Charities events. It was an auction with a long list of collectibles that included sports memorabilia, photographic products, workshops, etc. You name it, if it had value we had it up for auction.
Well, I had an idea and got one of Don Blair's 14EEE shoes. I mounted it on a walnut trophy stand and had it engraved and into the auction pool it went. The night of the auction my Dad was sitting with Don and several of his "nieces" in the bar. Before the shoe came up for bidding, Don turned to my Dad (who was not a photographer) and said, "Pay attention Ralph - I'm a big guy in this industry, and my one shoe is going to bring some BIG bucks!"
The shoe came up for auction, and the bidding went nuts, finally hitting $1000 for the trophy. The woman who bought it was so excited to win the bid that she actually outbid her own bid twice! Don couldn't stop smiling and looked at my Dad and exclaimed, "My man - what did I tell you?"
The next day at the trade show, my Dad was helping Don in the booth. We were waiting for a shipment of the book we wrote together. Don's daughter, Kathy, was checking the receiving desk at the hotel all morning and finally came to the booth to get Don's credit card to pay for the shipment. She told my Dad the books were in and since Don was in the middle of teaching in the booth, she asked him to grab Don's wallet to get his credit card for the books.
NOT! She needed the credit card, but not for the books! She had to pay for the Don Blair trophy she had bought the night before and was determined to nail her Dad with the bill. So, Don did raise a lot of money for charity, but it was out of his own account!
Dad never stopped letting Don know how "impressed" he was with his popularity! He'd kid Don every time they saw each other and "Big Daddy" would just look down sheepishly and shake his head!
And there you have it - throwback photographs bring back memories and along with them come the stories that make our friends and family immortal! Dad and Don have long since passed away, but that doesn't change the smile on my face right now!
So, whether you're sharing images on your blog as a marketing tool or taking a personal walk down Memory Lane - take the time to find a few old photographs today. It'll help remind you how unique the career path you chose really is and the important role photography plays in everyone's life.
Happy Throwback Thursday!
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