Sunday, October 21, 2012

Awesome night card, pt. 157

Every time I go to a card show, I am so buzzed on cardboard that I leave the show without something that I was one hundred percent certain that I would obtain when I first entered the building.

Oh, I bring lists and everything. I bring a hand-written list and I have my want lists available on my phone.

It's just impossible for me to focus on all of my goals when there's so much cardboard glory staring at me.

For at least three years now, the card you see here has been an A-1 priority for every card show. And every card show in those three years, I have left without acquiring the card.

That's at least 12 card shows visited and 12 card shows left without the 1969 Topps Del Unser card.

That's shameful.

I became so embarrassed by my inability to stay focused on one card that I stopped making the Unser card a priority. I went to a card show today and Unser wasn't even a thought in my head.

That was until I was leafing through a bargain box, considering what cards would be available for the precious few dollars I had remaining. Then it hit me:


I spent the rest of my time over that bargain box thinking "Don't forget about the Unser card! Don't forget about the Unser card!"

"Wow, look at these 1964 Topps. They're in such great shape."

"Don't forget about the Unser card!"

"Aw, man, 1977 Football! I love that set! Kenny Stabler, All-Pro? God, I want that card."

"Don't forget about the Unser card!"

"53 Topps??? In the bargain box?? Wow!"

"Don't forget about the Unser card!"

I presented my bargain cards to the dealer and he said, "All set?"

I said, "Yeah."

Then, "No ... wait, I need one card from 1969 Topps."

The dealer, good man that he is, fetched the card for me, even though I didn't know the number.

And now I have the 1969 Del Unser rookie card, something that was first a priority three years ago when I determined that it could very well be the first-ever night card by Topps.

Yeah, I know there is a 1953 Topps card featuring a painted night background. But that doesn't count. I want to see that darkening sky and that gleaming bank of lights for realz.

This card is a pretty good representation of how successful my trip through the card show was.

I need a night to go through my cards, but I can guarantee at least one, maybe two, card show posts coming up.


Night Card Binder candidate: Del Unser, 1969 Topps, #338
Does it make the binder: 100 percent, Yes!


  1. Thanks for putting a good challenge out there. Finding a Topps night card before that one. Do you know what stadium is behind Del?

    I also bring lists that don't get used. I'm too cheap to buy the card if the price isn't right.

  2. Glad you enjoyed the trip down US-81!

    You'll have to keep me better informed of card shows in the area. 'Fest 61 is the first one I've been to since 2001...

  3. You may be right - this could be the first night card - though for some reason I thought 1952 Gus Zernail could be a potential night card or at least dusk card

  4. Love the Del Unser rookie card! Loved it in 1969, and even more in 1973, when the Phillies traded for him.

  5. Vintage Senator greatness. Nice going.

  6. We all have these little tiny white whales. Really, they are alabaster guppies.