Sunday, June 6, 2010

I went to a garage sale and forgot my list

This weekend was the town-wide garage sale that I attend every year. It's three towns, actually. Drive down the street and you can see homeowner after homeowner, all doing the same thing: hoping you'll take away their garbage.

The streets are filled with people doing just that. But I attend only one of the sales. It's the one with the guy who has the file cabinet full of sportscards. That is the very definition of one-stop shopping. Why go anywhere else? All I'm going to see anyway is acres and acres of clothes.

As I've detailed before, this guy apparently got into cards during the card boom of the late 1980s and early 1990s. It looks like he lasted until 1995 or so and then quit. In fact, he said he lost interest because companies started issuing too many cards -- hmmm, that sounds familiar.

Many of the cards are from the junk wax era. But others aren't. If you're willing to rummage around in his file cabinet for a good hour or so, you'll find some nifty cards. And he'll let you rummage around. After all, the sign out in front of his house say, "rummage sale."

My problem every year is I'm pressed for time. I usually have to work on the weekend of the sale and early June is a busy time at work. So I'm in a bit of a hurry and that leads to things like the Lou Brock card at the top of the post.

Or these cards:

I have the Brock card and all these cards already. There are a couple of others from the sale that I didn't scan that I also already own.

Who knew I would have to bring my lists to a garage sale! It's like a card show set up in a filing cabinet!

Fortunately, I did get a few cards that I needed. I'll show some of them here. A couple of other ones I'll save for later. Also, I grabbed a handful for bloggers, but I won't show those here. I threw just about the complete list on twitter, if your interested.

All right, totally random cards ahead:

A couple of Eric Karros needs, 1993 Bowman and 1995 Topps cyber stats. The projected '94 stats for Karros are a little disappointing, kind of like the Dodgers' NLDS series against the Reds in 1995.

A Jackie Robinson 1995 Topps Archives card. I'm going to have to compare this card with this year's CYMTO version and see how they match up. If I had the original back of the CYMTO, I'd compare the backs, too. Topps, you're getting way too repetitious.

This is some Sportflix card from the mid-1990s. It's too cold and wet outside for me to look up exactly what it is (what? that's a legitimate excuse).

The part that amuses me is the back. That is the most in-your-face bio write-up of all-time. I'm surprised there wasn't a gold-foil shortage after the 1990s.

I have very few early Bo Jackson cards. The concept of Bo worked for 12-year-old boys, but on college-aged boys, not so much. So now that I'm in touch with my 12-year-old self again, it's time to find Bo cards.

This is one of those great 1982 Fleer cards. Besides 1973 Topps, I don't think any other set has more awkward candid shots than '82 Fleer. Yaz appears to be doffing his cap to exactly 1,248 people.

A pair of early Raul Mondesi needs. He sure had a lot of minor league/rookie items. The '93 Bowman is one of those gold-foil border cards. I think those worked a lot better than some of the other foil stuff.

1990 Leaf seems a little tough to find. But the garage sale guy had about 15 of these Eddie Murray cards.

I can't turn down a Greg Maddux card, especially when it's one of those snazzy Black Gold items.

Cards like this are the reason I keep going back to the file cabinet. If it was just '90s cards, I could skip it every other year. But I always find something older like this. It's usually not in the best shape, but I absolutely can NOT argue with a 1970 Lou Brock card.

This is the only card I feel I got ripped off on -- he should have paid ME to take this card. But I have interviewed Deshaies several times and he is one of the two nicest professional athletes I have ever encountered. So that means I'll gladly take his cards.

Classic is so much fun. I can't wait to get all the Dodgers in all the colors. I'll open up the binder and invite everyone over for a "Saved by the Bell" party.

Speaking of early '90s phenomenons, I couldn't resist picking up this Endless Summer swimsuit promo card. I vaguely remember these -- they had some Summer Sanders insert series, too.

I tell you, when you're spending hours rummaging through cards of dudes and a gal in a swimsuit pops up, you can't help but grab that card. It's instinct.

Seriously, there needs to be more pretty girl cards. Enough with the dudes.

The file cabinet is organized by Hall of Famers, "stars," "minor stars," and "rookies." Most of the rookies are your usual early '90s suspects. Then I stumbled across a 1965 rookie stars card. Me likey.

I'll finish it off with a minor league card of Pedro. The garage sale guy noticed that card and yelled out "a minor league Pedro!" I'm sure early '90s profits went through his head when he saw it. It's almost as if he got misty-eyed.

But every year he admits that he has no idea how much cards go for anymore and lets me name my price. I try to be as fair as possible. After all, he has one of the best garage sales I've ever seen.

As usual, I missed the second day of the two-day event. The weather was lousy and I had to work. I look forward to it next year and hope the guy is still around (he was talking about how he just had a pacemaker put in).

Maybe next year I'll even bring a list.


  1. Great stuff man. I always consider going to yard sales hoping to find cards, but I never seem to find the time. Congrats on the cool finds.

  2. that 90 leaf murray is one of the nefarious 9! tell the garage sale guy to send me one!

  3. I have that Maci Wilkins promo card too... somewhere buried in one of my boxes. Blast from the past... nice pickups.

  4. So if Deshaies was "one of the two nicest professional athletes" you've ever encountered, who's the other?

  5. Craig Conroy, hockey player for Calgary Flames.