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I had a phone call yesterday from Paul Whitnah. He was just back from the American Numismatic Association convention as was I. He had two things on his mind.

Paul wanted to give me his reaction to the new digital version of the Aug. 21 issue of Numismatic News that he had tried out after he returned home.

He was all compliments. He said the ease of use was wonderful. He said if every issue was this easy to use, he wouldn?t need a paper version.

His other topic concerned a story I wrote in the issue. Toward the end of a piece that covered the actions of the ANA old board I noted that the 2010 National Money Show, which is the spring the convention, will be held in Dallas.

Whoops. Gotcha. The convention location is Fort Worth.

Now in the minds of us poor Wisconsinites, Dallas/Fort Worth could be one place. I transit through that airport multiple times per year. My brother even lived for a time in Dallas.

But none of that is an excuse. I screwed up. The whys can be many and all are irrelevant.

Paul pointed this out with his usual sense of humor and regaled me with stories of the rivalry between the two cities. Amon Carter Sr., owner of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram was a big Fort Worth booster. For him, the other city was a place to be fought tooth and nail.

According to Paul, when Carter had to go into Dallas in the 1930s and 1940s for a meeting, he would pack a lunch so that he would not have to spend money in the other place and thereby boost its economy.

Most of us would think that takes boosterism too far, but such is the nature of rivalries. Another story Paul told me related to his former employer American Airlines. Carter was the largest shareholder at one time. He insisted it schedule flights from Fort Worth. As a result, planes that landed there also had to land in Dallas. This sounds time consuming and expensive, but if Carter had the shares to take his rivalry with Dallas to the boardroom, that is what he could do.

So all of this was related to me to impress upon me that Fort Worth is not Dallas and some just might take exception to my error.

My apologies to all. I look forward to attending the 2010 National Money Show in Fort Worth. It is not quite a done deal yet because the decision is contingent upon dates, rates and space available.

What if it falls through? Amon Carter Sr. will roll over in his grave.
This is just what I heard from Paul Whitnah. I haven?t heard yet from my good friend Helen Wallace, who operates the R.E. Wallace coin shop in downtown Fort Worth.

I have visited her there and she knows that I know the difference between Fort Worth and Dallas. Perhaps she will let me apologize to her with a lunch at a little Mexican restaurant that we enjoyed the last time I was there.

This mistake of mine could be so much fun that I might be tempted to make a few more just so that old friends can call, chew me out and tell me the backgrounds of their cities.

America has many good stories to tell. Why not send me one of yours?

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