I am a collector of many things, most of them are pop culture related – comics, action figures, vinyl records, and more recently, Funko Pops. The fun thing is, my dad and sister are Funko Pop collectors as well, so it’s something we can all enjoy together.

If you’re scratching your head asking, “What’s a Funko Pop?” I have an answer! It’s basically a 3-inch (some are 6 inches and even 10 inches, but most are 3) vinyl figure. They can be anything. As I type this, I have an Audrey II from “Little Shop of Horrors” and a glow in the dark Mysterio from Marvel Comics and “Spider-Man Far From Home” staring at me.

There is just about a Funko Pop of everything you can think of in pop culture. I’ve got a nearly complete set of Care Bears at home. I’ve got Star Wars ones, Lord of the Rings ones, Simpson’s ones, and even German Shepherds from various video games and movies. One of my most recently acquired and favorite figures is Jim Henson holding Kermit the Frog.

Last weekend, San Diego Comic-Con, the convention that all nerds dream of going to, took place. Every year, Funko releases exclusive Pops. Of course, I had a list that I needed to have, so I took vacation last Friday so that my dad and I could Funko hunt together. Unfortunately, the release date was moved to Thursday, so I went to Glenbrook Mall Thursday morning to wait outside of Think Geek for a SDCC exclusive glow in the dark two-pack of Simpson’s aliens.

I picked up other figures that day such as Marvel’s Gamora, a flocked Faux from Harry Potter and an animated version of Boba Fett from Star Wars. The next day, on the Friday I originally took off to SDCC Pop hunt, I found the set of Care Bears and a Skeletor from Masters of the Universe.

The fun part of last week’s Funko hunting was being on the phone with my dad, geeking out about my finds with someone who is just as excited about the figures. Of course, we’re not the only ones who do this; there was a huge line of people outside of Hot Topic waiting to get their hands on some SDCC exclusives.

There’s been many Friday’s where I’ve driven to Target and waited for them to open at 8 a.m. so I could get my hands on an exclusive figure.

I think the funnest part of collecting something is doing it with people who have as much as a passion for the hobby as you do. My dad, sister, her boyfriend and I have a group texting chat and nearly every day one of us is sharing the announcement of a new Funko Pop or sharing our find to let the others know where to get the item.

Next Friday, I’ll drive to Target before work to try to hunt down a Jim Henson holding Ernie from Sesame Street and a flocked (flocked means the Pop is fuzzy) Bullseye, the Target mascot.

Often, people don’t understand why I buy so many toys; sure, I’m not playing with them and I’m certainly not opening these things (without the boxes they are worthless!). I just like to look at them. Why does a person collect baseball cards or baskets? Because it’s fun. It’s been a long-running joke in the nerd world that if you teach your kid to love comics and toys, they will never have money to spend on drugs. I come from a family of collectors who have never even looked at drugs; so maybe there is a lot of truth to that.

I love showing people my toys and my comics. I could talk about them, their worth, and their meaning all day, which is why as a collector I think it’s important to find people who share your passion. So what if most the world doesn’t get it? At least you’ve got a few favorite people who do.