The front-and-center photo of the Manning family in 1996 is worth the price of admission. The fact that this particular story is about how a young Eli Manning learned from his mom only sweetens the pot. But that's not all. Heavens, far from it.

In a revealing New York Times story from Tuesday — I can't believe I didn't catch wind of this until now — a nation gained a whole new perspective into the enigmatic Little Manning's upbringing:

Some weekends, Archie would take the older boys to their games and Manning said he would ask if he could stay home with a baby sitter. When that was not possible, he would go shopping with his mom for antiques — anything to avoid sitting through four or five basketball games in a day.

"The first couple of times it wasn't because I wanted to," Manning said. "It was just because she wanted to go shopping and there was nobody to watch me, so I had to tag along. But after I went a couple of times, I started to enjoy it."

He didn't want to go to Peyton's basketball games, so instead he went antiquing with his mom. When did KSK begin writing under the New York Times alias Karen Krouse?

Little known fact: It was Eli's boyhood love of Man-tiquing — the fine art of scrounging for old, priceless artifacts — that convinced the Giants to re-sign Jeff Feagles.

Eli Manning Took Cues From Mother [NY Times]