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Selfless card acts

The trouble with the world, if I may be so bold to weigh in (it's not like anyone else is holding back), is that not enough people think outward.

Take a look at just about every world problem that there is, and within each of those individual maelstroms, is somebody, usually a lot of folks, thinking only of themselves.

Looking out for No. 1 is a big, big problem on this earth. One of the biggest. And it's not getting better. I see it coming from all directions and all sides. No one is innocent. Everyone is guilty. Selfishness is the crime.

Our hobby is not immune. That's what makes the baseball card blog community so great, because it's a daily example of what can be achieved when you think of others first, before yourself.

Selflessness is such a staple of card blogs that some collectors have become immune to its charms. "Oh boy, here's another post about what somebody got thanks to the goodness of someone's heart. I don't need to read THAT." I admit I also get a little jaded about the perpetual generosity spinning through the blogs. I'm not nearly as astonished and bubbly as I was when I started out 11-plus years ago.

However, that doesn't mean I can no longer recognize selfless card acts when I see them. I do appreciate them. And they do touch my heart.

And, I think, now more than ever, I should be broadcasting those card acts on this blog.

So, a few days ago, Zippy Zappy showed off some of the 2020 Topps Utz cards he's managed to find in his neighborhood. These are popular cards because bloggers love their food-issue cards and also because Utz potato chips are regional and a lot of collectors can't find them.

ZZ managed to pull a couple of duplicates for his Utz collection. One of them was the Dodgers' Dustin May, one of the so-called "hot rookies" in 2020 sets. I don't care about "hot rookies," but as a team collector, I know every time there's a "hot rookie" from my team, it will automatically make that card tougher for me to acquire.

So, I saw that second Dustin May card on his blog and I pined. I also left some moaning comment about how I can't find no stinkin' Utz. And that's how I left things. I figured Zippy Zappy would get his extra card signed as he likes to do.

Little did I know that he had already sealed up that extra Utz May in an envelope with my address even before I left the comment.

It's beautiful.

That's the Utzy back.

OK, that's merely selfless card act 1.

Here's No. 2:

Today, not even a couple hours ago from when I'm writing this, reader Mike alerted me in an email to an available card on ebay.

Now, this is pretty common, at least in my experience. It's always appreciated, although most of the time I pass.

This time I couldn't. Mike said there was a Ron Cey card available and that card was a '77 Topps Venezuelan. What's more, I could get it for 10 bucks total, including shipping.

I'm happy to say the card is on its way to me. A rarity, as I don't see many new-to-me Ceys these days.

That's quite selfless of Mike to take the time to alert me to the card. Another example of thinking outward.

All right, that's selfless card act 2.

The third one involves Julie of A Cracked Bat and her pick-pocket program.

I've been slow on the uptake with her giveaway. She actually had to email me specially out of the kindness of her heart to let me know what was going on.

Thanks to her, I was able to enter the frenzy and scarf up some very generous cards she was offering up just as a thank you!

My favorite was the 1975 Hostess Don Gullett card. I grab those on instinct.

More oddballs. I'm starting to make a dent with the Swell cards as Swell makes a dent in my heart. But my favorite is that Coca-Cola Trammell.

I kind of lost myself with this card. I'm not a fan of the Syracuse Orange or the New York Giants. But my paper does cover the Orange and I must've figured somewhere along the line I've interviewed Nassib.

I haven't. But somebody I know has. Does that count?

Aside from the Hostess card, this is the one from Julie that probably means the most to my collection. It's taken years of blogging to retrieve the Dodgers from 1993 Finest, even just the plain, old non-refractor ones. Karros gets me down to three cards needed (of course, Piazza will be the last one). And it feels good.

And that's selfless card act 3.

I realize that none of this is new in the card blog world. Our tiny corner runs on selfless generosity. I can cite dozens upon dozens of examples in the archives of my own blog.

But it's notable in a world that doesn't know what it means to think about others before thinking of themselves.

And then there are those who might stumble across this and think: So, what? You're talking about a few pieces of cardboard with pictures on them. Aren't you patting yourself on the back for throwing a few cards around? What's the big deal?

This is the big deal:

The world needs every example of selflessness it can get before it disappears from our society forever.

If we can be that example -- even with something as small as cards -- maybe it will make someone out there think.

We do far too much in this life without thinking.


acrackedbat said…
"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you"- Christianity. "Hurt not others in ways you yourself would find hurtful" - Buddhism. "Do nothing unto others which would cause you pain if done to you." - Confucianism "None of you truly believes until he wishes for his brother what he wishes for himself." - Islam and so on... Humans are by nature, selfish. It only takes a moment though, to step outside of this nature; to see we are all the same on the inside; to do one kind thing every day for someone else. Sometimes it's a simple as a smile or holding the door for someone. At times it's a bit more difficult, like NOT having that last word. I will step off my soapbox now.
Thank you, Night Owl.
Good thoughts. Looking out for others and not worrying about #1 goes a long way. And if I can't do that all the time, then hopefully showing a little generosity on my blog will help me to get closer to it.
Nick said…
I could not agree more with this post. Part of my biggest problem with the hobby these days (and the world as a whole) is the chest-thumping, look-what-I-did-aren't-I-cool solipsism. If Mr. Zappy was on the other, darker end of the hobby, he would've went back to Target (or wherever the Utz cards came from), bought all the remaining bags of Utz, posted a picture of it on Twitter, and sold the cards for a million-percent markup. I'm so thankful that kind of stuff doesn't happen on the blogs. It's why I'm still here all these years later.
Nick Vossbrink said…
Nice. This is indeed what makes the hobby great. I'm trying to end small envelopes out to people when I come across a card or two that has their name on it. And it's always great to find one in the mailbox. One of these days I'll find Julie's pick pockets before they've been picked. Also one of these days I'll find some cards with Julie's name on them.
Brett Alan said…
Selflessness doesn't come easy to me, as much as I would like to think it does, but the card blogs are definitely helping me try to be better at that.

I didn't even know there WAS a 1977 Topps Venezuelan set! I knew about the 1960s Topps Venezuelan sets, and I even bought some more recent non-Topps Venezuelans cards from an eBay seller a couple years ago. But 1977? That Cey looks like a really good deal. I don't suppose I'll ever own a Brett or Seaver from this set, but maybe someday I'll grab a Met from it. BTW, there seems to be a Lopes available at a somewhat reasonable price if you're interested:
Yes, No longer shall I put #1 first.
I will put #2 first after all I am the shit, LOL JK.

Great post. Compliments... yes everyone can use those (compliments) and a smile, even that grumpy bastard down the road, again just me messin. LOL
Elliptical Man said…
That's a nice card for a bag of chips.

Voting for the Coke Trammell though.
night owl said…
@Brett Alan ~

There's a Seaver '77 Topps Venezuelan on ebay for $20 right now:
Fuji said…
Great post. My dad and I were just talking about everything going on right now and he said something similar to you. He told me that I needed to be a good example for my students. He wasn't talking about being selfless specifically... but if he read this post, he'd agree with your message too.
Thank you for the shout-out, NO, and I'm glad I was able to help. Similar to what Fuji said, I try to help my students understand the importance of looking out for one another. I often tell them that since we can't go out and change the country or world right now, we should do what we can to make things even a little bit better for the people around us and the people we meet. I try to live my life that way as a dad and as a human.
Billy Kingsley said…
I have long said that if the rest of the world was as kind and generous as the card blogosphere the world would be a better place.
Fred Pike said…
Excellent. Thank You.
CaptKirk42 said…
Very nice. I love random (or specific) acts of Cardness.

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