Thursday, March 7, 2013


My schedule is going to get extremely weird over the next few days - I might be disappearing for four or five days next week - thus explaining all the multiple quick postings here this week.

Since I’ve been on a Saddlebred kick lately, let’s talk about my original Holy Grail model: the 1984 Just About Horses Saddlebred Weanling. I say original, because I’ve long since acquired the rude little beast that vexed me so:

The ASBW was the very first JAH Special, and as you nay have expected, the execution didn’t go quite as well as intended. You think Reeves messes up the sale and distribution of special run models now? Ladies, gentlemen, hobbyists of all persuasions: nothing beat the magnitude of messed-up-ness of the first JAH Special.

Most of us hobbyists back then were at the whim of the postal service when it came to getting our notification about Special Runs and such, and if your JAH happened to be late, no horse for you. And since most of us received our news in monthly allotments via our model horse newsletters of choice, we wouldn’t have necessarily known they were late until much later. Several weeks, if not months later.

The other big problem?  The order form itself: believe it or not, it wasn’t limited to one per customer or one per address. You could order as many as you wanted to - and allegedly, some people did.

So those of us who received our Just About Horses late (three weeks, as I discovered in my case) probably shouldn’t have been surprised when we received our money back a few weeks after that, with a letter informing us of the incredibly quick sellout.

I was not a happy camper.

It was the first instance of me writing a very angry letter to Peter Stone. I remember sitting at my portable typewriter, banging at the keys so hard I probably broke a couple of nails. (Pre-computer, dearies. Might have even been pre-electric. Yes, I am old.) Some cussing may have been involved; honestly, I can’t remember, because I didn’t bother to make a carbon copy of my angry missive.

Shortly afterward, the prices on the JAH ASBW went through the roof: within a few years, they were fetching anywhere from $250 to $400 - in late 1980s money! For a model with a 1000 piece run!

Yeah, I wasn’t going to buy it for that kind of money. That was crazy. So I didn’t.

I waited. And waited. And waited. Until the prices finally hit my comfort zone on eBay, somewhere in the $100 range.

The best part of waiting is that the model I finally got came with an… interesting pedigree. For confidentiality’s sake I can’t give away all the details about the transaction, except to say that there might be some actual significance to his serial number, which happens to be #0002.

The auction didn't mention any of those details when I bid on her. It was just that both the time and the price were right on that particular piece, and I got lucky.


Anonymous said...

So a sample piece, perhaps?

I was overly critical of you straying away from the history part of the blog several entries ago, but you've won me back - I've loved these last few entries!

ANDREA said...


I've been meaning to get back to the history. My schedule is (after this week, I hope) getting back to where it needs to be for me to do that on a more regular basis. And I might be getting involved in a project soon where the practice may come in handy.

(Another confidentiality wink there...)

SubaruWolf said...

Agreed! These last few entries have been awesome and this most recent one was particularly entertaining and enjoyable to read. Congrats on having your grail model turn out to be such a special individual. A happy ending to the story! :)

Anonymous said...

Any ideas on why the writing on these gals was so sloppy? I actually questioned the authenticity of mine, when I received it in the mail back in January, until I confirmed with several friends that theirs were also like this.

(I don't really blog, I just read them every once in a while. If you've got an answer, could you possibly PM me via Blab? Thanks! :)