Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Somewhere out there

We card bloggers are a tight-knit bunch. We like that we've found people who both collect cards and can write about them at length. That's a talent. Not just anybody can do both. A quick glance at Twitter will show you that.

We don't like it when one of our tight-knit bunch decides to leave us. That's one less person to continue the tradition, to put our love for cards in concrete, virtual writing, to confirm to all of those who don't understand that we're really not insane.

When one card blogger exits, it's as if they disappear from our world and we wonder what became of them. The days become weeks, become months, and suddenly we're explaining to new bloggers "there used to be this really great card blog and everybody knew about it and everyone read it" and getting annoyed because they've never heard of this blog.

I hope that's not what happens to Dime Boxes. Sure, I understand life and how it pulls you away from blogging, and that the pull is more insistent at some stages of life than others. Breaks are necessary. They're healthy. And they probably explain why I'm so screwed up because I rarely take breaks. But you hate to see a blog like that collect cobwebs. Because I'm still checking out Dinged Corners once a month just to make sure I haven't missed a return.

A good way to stay in rotation, even if you've stepped away from blogging, is to continue to comment and continue to trade. Nick is doing both, which is why I'm not humming the "Somewhere Out There" theme to him, which I know nobody wants, particularly me, and particularly Nick. I know exactly where he is based on the cards he just sent me recently.

He's at one of his many card shows or many flea markets or hitting the local Target because they always get Heritage on the day it releases.

OK, there was no Heritage in this package, but there were definitely a lot of oddballs, no doubt dug out of the mythical dime boxes.

I'll show the non-oddballs first, because there weren't as many of those that I needed.

Love the Piazza 1993 SP. My favorite card of the bunch.

However, the Back-To-Back insert is an utter failure and should have never been made. The fronts are weird and the back for this particular card addresses the fact that Joc Pederson and Adrian Gonzalez have never hit back-to-back home runs. I'd write something clever about this but I'm overwhelmed by dumbness.

The 2014 Panini Classics cards are much too drab for me. I placed the Burleigh Grimes card and Don Zimmer card together to show how to properly make a retro card. Sure, Fleer had the advantage of logos, but it's a much better design.

The Cubs-Dodgers combos I know have been saved up for me. Nick also sent the depressing Ron Cey Cub-Dodger OPC 1983 card, which I already own and weep over daily.

All right, let's move on to happier topics, and I don't think anything's better equipped for that than ODDBALLS!

Ho-HO, Pedro has brightened my mood in a Jiffy! Apparently Jiffy Pop popcorn still exists. And I'm sure there are people who insist it's the best-tasting popcorn ever. I'm not that fired up over popcorn, so I'll go with whatever method doesn't burn down the kitchen.

I now own several of these Zipz lids. I'm not really collecting them, but it solidifies my reputation as the go-to guy for '70s card product and that's the overall goal here.

Gary Alexander's 1979 Hostess card is overwhelmed by Twinkie grease. Stains are almost always a deal-breaker for me and cards. But Hostess is so prone to that, I might have to backdoor some of these into my collection. Come on, look how carefully this was cut on the dotted line!

Nick is one of the biggest fans of O-Pee-Chee that I know and these are all needs. I'm especially appreciative of the 1989 OPCs, which have been allergic to my collection for whatever reason.

But my favorite OPC in the package -- my favorite card in the package period -- is this one:

Half Dodger-half Yankee, which is so great already. But the best part is it is the middle card in a three-card metamorphosis.

Let's watch the transformation together:

Fascinating. That needs its own theme music.

No, not that theme music.

Nick sent a couple of cards from the 1991 Pro Set MusiCards because I enjoy music cards so. The best cards are the ones from the Historic Concerts subset. In fact, I just got a bunch more of those cards in the mail today from Jason of The Writer's Journey. Very cool.

I also received a few potential cards for my '70s TV/movie page/binder (still trying to keep it to a page, but you know how that goes).

I had no idea there were Gong Show cards. This is very interesting, and, yes, I had to go right to our friendly neighborhood internet and find out the story behind these. I used to watch this show as a kid with my dad. It actually seemed quite normal to me at the time.

All right, some of you are only about the baseball. Let's get back to the baseball oddballs and a 1981 Topps Scratch-Off card of Steve Garvey. It's been an elusive one.

UltraPro and the '90s, man. It's a good thing UltraPro sent me that free box of mini-pages. Because I can't believe I'm trying to complete a set of a guy in a tux.

My new Fleer Sports Illustrated mini-poster refused to sit straight on the scanner. So a slightly crooked Piazza (and Hideo Nomo) is all you get.

I should have put this with the regular cards because it's not an oddball, it's an insert. But it's too special to be a regular card. One day I'll have my priorities straightened out and stage a full-out assault on this World Series programs set. One of the best things that Topps did in the previous decade.

I'm ending this with some TCMA cards because they're the oddballs (well, that and Kellogg's) that are closest to my heart. This card from the 1982 Baseball's Greatest set borrows the Medwick photo from an earlier TCMA set.

This blue-background Medwick was produced in 1978 for the 1941 Brooklyn Dodgers set.

A few more. I don't have the time to look it up, but there is a difference between this Hodges Sluggers card and the one I own, which is perforated. Fine by me. I don't like putting cards like this in the dupes box.

And finally, a single card from my dear Baseball Immortals set, a complete version of which I will own someday. I've never associated Manush with the Dodgers, but there's no mistaking that cap.

Thanks for all of those cards, Nick, especially the glorious oddballs.

And thanks for staying in touch with us card bloggers continuing the fight. Join us again when you're ready.


  1. I used to love the Gong Show when I was a little kid. I now pine for the opportunity to use a gong on various speakers who drone on and on in completely uninteresting fashion.

    Also, I believe we should now call Nick "Fievel" until such time as he returns to blogging.

  2. That was quite a trade package. Nick never disappoints.

  3. Nick always seems to have his finger on the pulse of whoever he's trading with, this appears to have been anything but an exception. It's no wonder Medwick was such a fine hitter, they let him take the whole bat rack up to the plate with him!

  4. Dime boxes was one of my favorites. With his many many many many player collections I could see were his collecting enthusiasm could wander though. But with his comments hopefully he is still around collecting for a long time.

    The one I miss and wonder about is The Collective Troll. Haven't seen anything from him in ages.

  5. ^^^ To be clear, I'm still 100-percent still in the collecting game, just not blogging at the moment.

    Glad you enjoyed the cards, Greg! I'll definitely still be around reading/commenting/trading even if my blog collects dust. I'm hoping to reassess things and kick the tires on the blog again after I graduate in a few months. I'd always wondered if you were a Gong Show fan, it's one of my dad's favorite shows. He has a stack of Gong Show VHS tapes that we used to watch again and again when I was a kid.

    (Also, no Heritage at my Target so far this week...I think they're slacking. Hopefully they'll be in stock when I return tomorrow.)

  6. Glad Nick is still haunting the blogiverse. That Gong Show card, reminds me not only that I really should try to track down that set and maybe a wrapper for it on the cheap (I'm all about getting cards as inexpensively as possible, free as gifts are best) but also of a specific "Mr. Tweedy" comic strip. Mr. Tweedy was sort of a Mr. Bean before Rowan Atkinson evolved into him. Anyway the comic which I have clipped somewhere. I couldn't find it on the internet, but I think that one was at one time. The strip shows Mr. Tweety looking at a wall shelf that is loaded with vhs tapes and the caption says "He has the entire run of the Gong Show" or something like that it might also say something about 100 hours of 60 minutes.

  7. There were Gong Show cards?!?

    (Pauses to make a notation on his want list document)

    Damn, there's no end to the 1970's surprises.

  8. good stuff - especially like that medwick card. both medwicks, actually. i hadn't seen either before.

    ps - i withheld sending you that pwe that i mentioned. i'll look for more stuff to make it a full blown package.

  9. I think what you are referring to as Zipz lid is actually a disk that was given away at Isaly's and Sweet Williams restaurants around Western Pennsylvania and Ohio. The baseballcardpedia article ('s_Discs) says they were only distributed around Pittsburg, but Isaly's was a regional comapnyI just bought a complete set at a recent card show, since my late father-in-law used to work for Isaly's managing restaurants in Central Ohio.

    1. There are several different versions of these discs with different sponsors. Isaly's is just one of them. There are also Zipz and Crane potato chips. The fronts are essentially the same (except Crane has the word "Crane" across the front), but the backs feature a different advertisement.

  10. What year did Topps produce those World Series program cards? I've gotta get my hands on that 1972 card.

    P.S. Cool Vanilla Ice rookie card.