Skip to main content

C.A.: 2008 Topps Allen & Ginter World's Greatest Victories, Man Walks on the Moon

(Today is National Ice Cream Soda Day. As a kid, my folks would take me to Parkside Candy, a Buffalo institution, to get several flavors of industrial-sized lollipops. Then, one day, my dad introduced me to ice cream soda at Parkside. I was spoiled instantly. No ice cream soda I've had since has tasted as good as that one at Parkside's. And now, Cardboard Appreciation. This is the 283rd in a series):

In case you haven't heard, today is the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11 landing and man walking on the surface of the moon.

I had just turned 4 when this epic, audacious moment took place on U.S. televisions everywhere. I assume my folks were watching but I have no idea. I have no memories of the moon landing.

However, the after-effects of that day followed me through my childhood. Astronauts loomed as the country's biggest heroes, larger than life, bigger than even Joe Namath or Hank Aaron. Kids brought space-themed lunch boxes to school, and we often took breaks in class to view the latest NASA venture into space.

My friend's mother bought Pillsbury's space food sticks -- modeled after the high-energy snacks the astronauts ate -- and to this day I remember them as a childhood, culinary masterpiece, on par with Bottle Caps and Milkshake candy bars. In reality, space food sticks were probably no better than a primitive energy bar but I yearned for another taste through the rest of my childhood.

As the '70s progressed, space food sticks faded from the market and so did the public's fascination with space travel.

The space program doesn't feature the star power it did when I was a kid. And there's plenty of stupid stuff out there like moon-landing conspiracy theories.

But fortunately, Topps has done an adequate job of remembering the moon landing in its cards. In 2008, the Eagle Lunar model's historic feat was commemorated in Allen & Ginter's World's Greatest Victories insert set, still one of my favorite A&G inserts (although not the greatest look).

Topps also paid tribute to the moon landing in two different sets last year, Allen & Ginter and Heritage.

The triumphant moment is recognized on the back of the first card in the Magnificent Moons insert set in last year's A&G.

Unfortunately, the tribute falls flat:

July 11???????

Considering that Apollo didn't launch from Florida until July 16, 1969, I think Armstrong walking on the moon five days prior was probably impossible.

Is this another case of A&G's quality continuing to slide?

In 2008, A&G got it right:

Fortunately, Heritage last year also produced a moon-landing card as part of its annual News Flashbacks set. I don't have that card, but here's an image of it:

And here's the back:

July 20!


Although I don't remember anything about the initial moon landing, the thrill and the pride over the U.S. space program is something that I totally associate with childhood, just like the Bicentennial and Grand Funk Railroad. Astronauts were brazen cowboys and we loved it.

Tonight at some point, I'm going to rewatch the "Mad Men" episode that takes place during the moon landing. It really gets across how awe-inspiring that moment was.

The things humans can do sometimes.


bbcardz said…
I actually remember seeing the Apollo moon landing on TV--it was the most anticipated moment of my young life back then.
gregory said…
Got to love the back of that News Flashbacks card. Have you ever read "The Right Stuff" by Tom Wolfe? Quite an interpretation of the space program and the Mercury Seven.
Adam said…
CBS was running their original coverage of the moon landing on their website last night. I watched some of it...such an amazing moment.
Fuji said…
I remember how excited I was to watch shuttle launches back in the early 80's. Watching Armstrong and Aldrin walk on the moon must have been on a completely different level. Wish I would have thought of writing a tribute post... but it looks like you and Billy have it covered.
GCA said…
Should have done a post like this myself. And I need that WGV card! I was at my dogsitting gig watching C-SPAN run the entire CBS coverage of the landing. Can't get enough of all the new documentaries. Hope my space binder doubles in size after this.
Mark Hoyle said…
Great post Greg. I remember watching Apollo 11 with my dad
AdamE said…
I remember as a kid the whole school would gather in the cafeteria to watch shuttle launches. It was always a big deal. Until Challenger. We never watched another launch again after that.

Popular posts from this blog

A friend indeed

This week has been the kind of week that only late January could produce.

Nothing particularly wrong or terrible happened. Mostly what I felt this week was a sense of spinning my wheels, of working hard without result (or with other people screwing it up), of trying to get things accomplished (while battling a sinus infection) only to have a car noise or a phone call knock me back to square one.

That feeling transferred over to the blog where I probably spent too much time uploading too many photos and conducting too much research and expecting too much in return.

But all of this is a phase. It's the January malaise. I'll snap out of it. It could be worse. I could be dealing with three feet of snow right now instead of the melting three inches that is out there.

And I could be struggling through this week without an envelope in the mail from "A Friend".

That's right, "A Friend".

That's how the return address appeared on the envelope. Just above th…

Degrees of doneness

I just wrapped up my first notable card purchase of 2020.

It was an online order -- from three of every collector's favorite card-buying sites -- and with the exception of three inserts from 2019 and a stray card from 1989, every single card I ordered was made prior to 1980.

That feels good. That feels tremendously good.

I'm starting off 2020 in the right frame of mind.

It's also a good way to put a cork in the 2019 collecting season. There are various ways you can say you're done with the cards from the previous year, call it degrees of doneness, if you will (I order steaks "medium" or "medium well," I don't need anything crawling off my plate).

1. You can be done with collecting sets from 2019. I'm certainly done with that. I didn't try to collect many sets from that year anyway. The 2019 Topps Holiday set and a third of the 2019 Topps Archives set are finished and that's everything I plan to do.

2. You can be done with buying pac…

The lone Ranger

Who is Nick Solak?

Glad you asked.

And thanks to cynicalbuddha for scanning his card into Trading Card Database.

Nick Solak is a former Yankees, former Rays prospect who appeared in 33 games for the Texas Rangers last year.

That, apparently, qualifies him for being the only Texas Ranger to appear in the 350-card base set for 2020 Topps Series 1, a checklist of which was released this morning.

That's right, the ONLY Texas Ranger.

I did the count and the Rangers, with Solak shouldering the entire load, come up a distant 30th behind the 29th-place Orioles, who have a more typical seven cards.

Here is the breakdown by team that I compiled earlier:

Dodgers - 17
Astros - 17
Nationals - 16
Cubs - 15
Athletics - 14
Brewers - 14
Indians - 14
White Sox - 14
Phillies - 13
Angels - 12
Blue Jays - 12
Braves - 12
Padres - 12
Red Sox - 12
Reds - 12
Twins - 12
Yankees - 12
Cardinals - 11
Giants - 11
Marlins - 11
Mets - 11
Diamondbacks - 10
Mariners - 10
Rays - 10
Tigers - 10
Royals - 9
Pirates -…