Set-collecting is a challenge and my theory is there are so few set collectors these days because nobody has the attention span for it anymore.
Well, that, and they don't have the money for it anymore, I guess. But there are many collectors who don't see the point of accumulating cards of Brad Miller and Marcus Semien, Tampa Bay Rays and Oakland A's, when they can just buy cards of their five favorite players over and over again.
Set-collecting takes commitment, persistence, cash and the mind-set that every player is valuable no matter what team he plays for or how well-known he is. In short, it's not easy to do. Or, as they say, everyone would be doing it.
I have the most fun set-collecting, even though it can be tough. It gets tougher and tougher all the time, which is why I thought I'd have an easy time of trying to complete the 1989 Fleer set.
The '89 Fleer set arrived during a time when cards were plentiful and the cards from that era continue to be as plentiful as ever (see tomorrow's post for another example). Also, the scourge of 1990s collation hadn't arrived yet so you can avoid accumulating mass duplicates with sets like '89 Fleer.
So, when Johnny's Trading Spot sent me a 36-pack box of 1989 Fleer, which totals to 540 cards, I figured I'd finish off this set in a breeze. There are 660 cards in the set, there were no duplicates in the 36-pack box (hey, there's a concept for ya, modern-day Topps), so all I needed was to blend the 250 or so 1989 Fleer cards already in my collection with those 540 cards and I should be on my way to a complete set in no time!
Not so fast.
I've finally arrived at the final totals and I need only .... 80 cards!?!?!?!?!?! ... to complete the set.
I had hoped that I'd need maybe 25 or 30 when the counting was done. But with the 536 cards from the box (4 of the cards were inserts, so they don't count), it means that I had just 44 cards already in my collection that didn't duplicate the cards in the box. 1989 Fleer isn't any easier to complete than any other set!!!
Well, not as easy as I thought it would be anyway.
This kind of sucks because as I mentioned before I never intended to complete 1989 Fleer. I've never been much of a fan. The thought of attempting to buy the 80 cards that I'm missing is ridiculous to me. I'm sure there's a complete 1989 Fleer set listed online for 40 cents right now.
So, (*hangs head in shame*), these are the cards that I don't have:
20, 23, 30, 31, 35, 50, 76, 92, 97, 101, 111, 117, 125, 130, 139, 152, 157, 162, 178, 188, 195, 210, 215, 216, 224, 230, 233, 234, 244, 248, 266, 269, 277, 288, 303, 306, 324, 331, 334, 341, 348, 352, 353, 379, 385, 387, 389, 402, 403, 428, 434, 442, 448, 460, 466, 475, 487, 493, 499, 500, 516, 519, 527, 530, 540, 546, 552, 553, 568, 571, 579, 588, 620,
That's probably the only place where I will list a 1989 Fleer want list. It's not going on my main want list page -- all the other want lists will laugh at it.
So, now that I've come to the end of my dealings with that '89 Fleer box, here are the other items from it:
Those are the box-bottom cards. It's good to get the Kirk Gibson card, even though I have it already. The whole bottom is quite Mets-heavy.
Here are the stickers, someone on the last 1989 Fleer post got all upset because I didn't show the stickers.
I also saved a few wrappers that advertised different collector items: "Fleer's official sports card collectors sheets, an "official Fleer baseball card team set album," or an "official Fleer card collectors album." Everything was very official.
Johnny also sent several packs of nonsports cards, including one pack of the Pro Set MusiCards, a set I'm trying to complete.
This was the only card I needed in the pack. It came out of the pack kind of beat up. This is what happened when cards stopped being issued in wax packs.
These are the other nonsports packs. I don't really know what to do with them as none are anything I know or collect:
Anybody's welcome to them. I suppose I could show some on A Pack To Be Named Later.
Johnny also sent a bunch of cards of something I do collect -- Dodgers!!!! I'm still sifting through those and they'll get their own post.
Also, here's one last shot of what I have from the 1989 Fleer set:
All of that -- including the Billy Ripken F-face, the Randy Johnson variation and a few other variations -- and still 80 cards short.
Set-collecting. It ain't easy.