Thursday, March 20, 2014

Passive-aggressive set collecting

OK, ever since 2012 I've made a lot of noise about never attempting to complete another modern set again.

This is still my general feeling and I am reminded that it's a good feeling when I read things like how Opening Day has variations again.

But then how do I explain -- mr. smarty pants -- me trying to complete 2013 Allen and Ginter? Huh? Huh? Huuuuuuuuuuuuuh????

Well, you got me there.

The only thing I can say is -- and this is a rationalization -- is that there are certain sets that rise above.

They rise above all the nonsense that hovers around card sets these days. Short-prints, variations, online exclusives, etc. Sure, those "rise above" sets may include some of the very things that caused me to put on the breaks and go in reverse about 30 years, but I don't notice them as much because the set is too awesome.

I suppose this is the way to still get me to collect a modern set. Don't make it crap. Make it interesting enough that I don't care how much you hurt me. And right now, the only sets that fall in this category are Allen & Ginter and 2024 Heritage. Yes, I know 20214 isn't here yet. But I cannot wait. The whole 2024 Heritage set could be SPs and I'll probably collect it.

But back to the present.

Even though I'm attempting to complete 2013 A&G, I am still collecting it under protest. You could even say I'm collecting it passive aggressively.

In the past, I would buy boxes of A&G. And when I was in the card aisle, I'd buy blasters of A&G. And if there were no blasters, I'd buy packs or racks of A&G before I even looked at any other cards.

No more.

There are no boxes anymore. And when I go to the card aisle, sometimes I stare at the A&G on the shelf and then ignore it. I don't even tell it "not today." I just walk past it like it's not even there. Maybe I want that pack, maybe I don't. A&G will never know.

Yup, I'm collecting 2013 A&G at my own pace and in my own passive aggressive way. I will complete it at a much slower pace than any of the previous A&G sets I have completed. I fully expect to be collecting 2013 A&G when 2014 A&G is out. Because I'm not letting a modern set dictate when I collect it. We can work on this set all decade if that's my wish. You think you're more interesting than 1972 Topps, 2013 A&G? You're not. I've been working on 1972 Topps for two decades.

Part of collecting in this manner means not blowing your money on the set in unreasonable ways, like buying blasters.

Instead, get a bunch of cards from a fellow collector.

About a week or two ago, I did just that as the Collective Troll mailed me 83 cards from off my want list.

I know you saw all these things back in August when people were finishing off the set in a week, but I still haven't seen half the cards. So, a few observations:

Nice card. I wonder how they decide whether the color splotch behind the subject is going to match with the team color?

Marck sent me both Jason Dufners in the base set. This is a major fail for A&G. A&G should be above this kind of ineptitude.

Tony Gwynn packed on quite a few pounds in one year.

A&G seems to have a little obsession with people who have food shows and figures in college football. I don't pay attention to either and coaches are possibly the most annoying part of college football, so I wish these weren't in the set.

Gentlemen, your A&G Babe of the Year for 2013.

Let's update the list:

2006: Jennie Finch
2007: Mia Hamm
2008: Jeanette Lee
2009: Cat Osterman
2010: Shawn Johnson
2011: Hope Solo
2012: Kate Upton
2013: Chrissy Teigen

There seems to be a shift from athletes to super models.

Josh Reddick is a possible "Legends Of Cardboard" in the making. And I've got to get back to that series.

I don't know how this lacrosse player got in the set. If they want to feature legendary lacrosse players, they should feature the Powell brothers, who are legends in the sport that I've interviewed a number of times. That would be pretty cool.

 This image I recognized right away.

I like it a lot better on '75 Topps.

These two cards are numbered back to back in the set. It's like the best the Yankees can do and the worst they can do all in two cards.

The Troll sent me many, many other A&G cards, as well as some pretty cool Dodgers, too.

All nice and bubbly.

Even with all the A&G I got, I'm still around 130 cards away from finishing the set.

But I'm not in any rush.

In fact, Topps will probably put out a dozen more sets with variations by the time I'm finished with 2013 A&G.

You may call it procrastination. Or stubborness.

I call it passive-aggressive set collecting at its best.


  1. I agree on the Powells. I know Mikey pretty well.

  2. Topps announced that 2024 Heritage will offer 9 Chrome Parallels per 9 card pack, with a SP base card falling 1 in every 3 packs.

  3. who you callin' passive aggressive!
    i contemplated writing something witty here, but honestly your comment about spending two decades on 1972 Topps really stuck with me. i think of how many years i have invested on sets i LOVE and then i think of sets like this (2013 ginter) that are pretty cool, but i finished in 2 months and really haven't thought of since...

  4. I'll show you some passive aggressive set collecting, but at a later date.

  5. I've got to agree on Josh Reddick - that's a great point. Almost all of his cards are noteworthy. It's almost like Topps knows it and is trying to keep it going. That's giving Topps too much credit though.

  6. Never heard of Chrissy Teigen... but I'm glad Topps found a way to include her in the 2013 set.

  7. Like the Kardashians, I pretend that SP's, variations and online exclusives don't exist.

  8. How DO you complete a set like A&G without being a case breaker? Ignore the SPs, inserts, minis and variations? I'm still looking for insert minis and N43s from 2009 and haven't tried another A&G set until the upcoming 2014.

    There's a specialty I'm surprised more guys don't take up ~ the babe cards from A&G, GQ etc. I've started the rainbow for Kate & Erin Andrews from last year and should probably go for Jeanette Lee since I play pool....

  9. I suppose I should be grateful that the Phillies are doing badly enough that Topps no longer wants to make variation cards for Howard, Utley, Lee, Hamels, et al. Still, I really do wish Topps would cut it out.