Friday, May 5, 2017

I need something happy


A co-worker friend of mine passed away earlier this week. I won't say he was a close friend, but he was a good guy and a diehard Dodger fan. Dodger fans are difficult to find in these parts, and we would talk about our team out in the work parking lot for far too long.

The saddest part for me is he was able to enjoy his retirement for just three years, probably less than that because he spent two of those years battling cancer. I cannot get over that. It's not a happy time.

I had a post cued up and ready to go that reflected my mood, a kind of "face the music" post that would likely bring the room right down. But I need to start becoming more aware of the days of the week. It's Friday. People want to read and hear and feel happy things on Fridays. I need to learn that.

So what do I do to make myself happy?

There are a few things:

1. Send out some card packages

✔ I forced myself out in the rain and did that earlier this afternoon.

2. Listen to the Greg Kihn Band

✔ The lyrics aren't always happy but the music is. Love me some Kihn.

3. Post some happy cards

✔ I'm going to do that right now.

The "disc-card" of Corey Seager starts us off. It's not exactly my favorite look -- I think Walmart has gotten screwed on the Heritage Target-Walmart exclusives the last two years -- but Corey's smile is just dreamy and I can't help but enjoy it.

That card came from a small envelope sent to me by Commish Bob at The Five Tool Collector, who was fresh off a card show. The Seager was the only current card in the bunch. And to see what heady company he traveled with, we will now journey all the way to the 1950s.

Yes, I have this card already. I know that, the Commish knows that. But he said it was a dealer throw-in. How can you argue a throw-in of a 1950s card? What are you going to do, give it back? What am I going to do, give it back? Of course not. Welcome to the collection, Don.

I nearly picked up this card at last month's card show when I was going through the 1956 binder. Goodman is one of those forgotten stars of the '50s, and I gravitate toward those guys. I first discovered Billy Goodman in the late '70s TCMA set -- a card I need to get. P.S.: We all know Goodman is retiring a Yankee here. The artist just forgot to draw in the pinstripes.

Looky, looky. Someone consulted my very incomplete new want list. Podres is nicked and lost a little bit of himself but I don't care when it comes to 1955 Topps (or most '50s cards really). This is a Brooklyn superstar who grew up in the mountains of Upstate New York. Glad to cross this number of my list.

The first Bowman card of Ralph Branca to appear after he gave up Bobby Thomson's Around the World Shot.

In fact, the unfortunate incident is mentioned right on the back of the card.

I enjoy how Bowman tries to absolve Branca of any responsibility. THERE WAS NOTHING WRONG WITH THE PITCH! EXPERTS AGREE! Maybe if the advertisement for that Bowman baseball cap wasn't there, Bowman could have added how the Giants stole signs and cheated.

OK, last card.

Are you ready?

What a beauty.

I've pretty much resigned myself to never obtaining most of the 1952 Dodgers. I realize that Carl Erskine is not one of the many Dodgers in the high numbers (he's card #250), but I tend to lump them all together as unreachable.

This card is in wonderful shape for being 65 years old. Just a little glue or water-staining on the back. It's probably my best conditioned '52 Dodger.

The card put a smile on my face when I opened the envelope and continues to do so when I look at it now. It is just the thing to make me happy.

Which is why you're seeing this post now.

You'll probably see that other post soon enough. Once I get something in my head, I have to write to get it out.

But it's the weekend now. Time to be happy.

Cards will make you happy.


  1. Sorry for the loss of your friend.

  2. Sorry about your friend/co-worker. There is a certain irony to all this...I'm likely retiring in December when I turn 65. I could go a few more years but I want to be able to enjoy some of my retirement. And being a two-time cancer survivor I know how unpredictable life can be. I'm really happy the cards (or at least posting them) gave you a lift. I really am.

    And to get further into this I've been sending out some of my 'better' cards to those that will appreciate them these days. As much as I love having them I get more enjoyment out of others appreciating them. Credit for the Erskine should go to Tony L. That card was in a binder I only dug through because I was searching for cards to post in his 30 Day Card Challenge.

    I think I received it in some sort of contest/raffle/card 'draft' that ran on a blog when I first found this community of bloggers, many of whom I know think of as friends. It really is a beauty isn't it? Love his smile. Enjoy!

  3. Condolences on the passing of your friend. may God bless him and his family.

  4. My thoughts are with you and your co-worker's family tonight. Sometimes posts like this can be a good reminder to the rest of us to make sure we live our lives to the fullest, even on the weekend.

  5. Sorry for your loss. I hope you find some comfort in the hobby we all love here.
    Regarding the Goodman card....I think that is against the Tigers. The runner is wearing #3 which was retired by the Yanks in 1948. Some gal named Ruth? Meanwhile Ferris Fain wore #3 for the Tigers in 1955 and Walt Dropo wore in 1954. My guess it was one of those two.

  6. sending condolences to you Greg. Your sharing of the Demeter card brought back the memory of a young man name Todd - Todd Demeter. I went to high school with him. He was three years ahead of me. A Big City All Star drafted by the Yankees, Todd was 35 when cancer took his life. It's a provoking reminder to live NOW.

  7. Sorry to hear of your loss; but good job on doing happy things to pull out of it. Sat next to Greg Kihn on a flight after an Arizona spring training weekend many years ago; he couldn't have been cooler. He was a DJ on a San Jose radio station at the time (which I knew), but I wasn't aware that he had also written a few novels with a rock & roll/horror story theme.

  8. Sorry for your loss. Cards, ice cream, and television shows like The Office help me take my mind off of things when I'm feeling down.