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Showing posts from January, 2018

A hit to my collecting core

On the day that Oscar Gamble died, I saw one of his cards for the first time.

It's not as dramatic as it seems. I had not sorted through all of the early '80s cards that Adam sent me a couple of weeks ago. But upon hearing the news of Gamble's passing, I searched through them in a desperate effort to find a new attachment to the recently departed baseball card superstar.

This loss hits me hard.

I pulled Oscar Gamble's card out of one of the few packs of baseball cards I bought that first year I truly collected in 1975.

It was in July. The AM station played Paul McCartney and Wings' "Listen to What the Man Said," The Captain and Tennille's "Love Will Keep Us Together" and 10CC's "I'm Not In Love". Burning lower on the charts was War's "Why Can't We Be Friends," and the already pervasive "Rhinestone Cowboy" by Glenn Campbell.

My parents had taken my brothers and I to a lakeside community in southw…

Ranking 73ness, a double shot

One of the things that I've most enjoyed about my continuing quest to complete the 1973 Topps set is the perspective that these cards provide.

I do love backgrounds on my cards, something that is in much shorter supply on modern cards. As I've mentioned before, I like seeing "baseball" on my cards. That's not just the player in a uniform. It's other players and the field and the stands and fans and fences and equipment and everything that makes up this great game. I collect Baseball Cards, not merely Some Dude's Cards.

Take a look at one 1973 Topps card in all of its background glory:


Drink in all it has to offer.

Empty stands.
Guys chilling in the dugout.
Equipment on the ground.
Players in the distance with hands on hips.

There is a story to these cards.

Recently I received two separate stacks of 1973 Topps from two of the collecting veterans of our community, Mark Hoyle and Commish Bob. (I would like to state for the record that I am younger than each…

For the nonsporty types

When I was in college I took a journalism interviewing class. Taught by a former reporter and editor at The Buffalo News with a sarcastic/sadistic streak, it was the most challenging and probably the most influential class of my entire college career.

I likely have never encountered interviews in my professional life as difficult as three separate ones I did in that class.

Anyway, one of the students in that class was your stereotypical bleach blonde of the late 1980s. My professor liked sports and so did many of the males in the class. She looked at sports with disgust and went on a brief rant about them one time, but fortunately I can't recall her words.

Obviously, as someone who blogs about sports and whose work life and free time is about sports, I didn't agree with her. I still don't.

However ...

That's not to say I can't enjoy a world without sports.

In the past three years or so I've gravitated a little more toward nonsports cards. I've always had o…