Wednesday, February 10, 2010
Angels and errors
As the resident color freak, my favorite card sets often hinge on color. Like many collectors, I most appreciate it when a card set features colors that match the respective teams.
I've covered this before. I like it when a set features blue for the Dodgers, not pink or gold.
Topps and Upper Deck have been fairly good about that recently, although this year's UD set is about as colorless as it could possibly be when it comes to design.
No chance of that with Topps this year. The colors are all over the place and quite bright. I like that. I like neon signs. I like girls in their summer clothes. I like colorful cards.
So, I'm quite pleased with the 2010 cards in terms of coloring. And, for the most part, the colors match with the respective team.
I did notice a bit of a difference when I was leafing through my cards yesterday. Here are the few Angels cards I have. You'll notice Topps chose a red swoosh for the Angels. Or did they?
Cards like this make me immediately recall the days of "the corrected error." I don't expect there to be a new version of this card issued with the correct-colored swoosh. But back in the '80s, card companies were issuing corrected versions of cards all over the place. Fleer issued over 30 different corrections/changes in its 1981 set.
Although there were plenty of uncorrected errors in the '80s, there seemed to be more of an effort to correct errors then. Of course, that spawned two versions of the same card and people flipped out over which version was more rare. Among many examples, you've got the reverse negative John Littlefield card ('82 Fleer) and the white-letters Keith Comstock card ('88 Topps). A lot of these card went for big bucks (the Littlefield card still does, I believe).
That touched off an error craze among collectors. If you're old enough to have read Baseball Cards magazine when it was out in the early-to-mid '80s, you might remember the "Collector Q&A" column. It was a place for collectors to write in with questions about their cards. I liked this column because you found out about fascinating oddball sets and interesting variations, as well as answers for how to display/care for your cards, etc.
But during the error craze, the Q&A column got overrun with error questions. It was like a plague. Some examples:
-- "My 1981 Fleer card of Tim Stoddard has part of the R and D of his last name missing. Is this an error?" (it's a printing flaw).
-- "I recently bought a 1965 Topps card of Jim Katt with his name misspelled on the front as 'Kaat.' Was this ever corrected, and if it wasn't is this still a rare card?" (No, it wasn't corrected because "Kaat" is actually how you spell his name -- the thing that kills me is the person who answered the question didn't point this out).
-- "My 1982 Fleer card of Jesse Jefferson says he was born in the year '507.' Was this mistake ever corrected?" (No it wasn't. Jefferson really is 1,475 years old).
At least half of the questions seemed to be error-related. It started to frustrate me. It's understandable, because people were finding out there was money to be made off of errors. But I was reading the column for tips on my hobby. This just got in the way.
Today, collectors still notice errors. But in this current world of Intentional Errors, errors don't mean as much. That's bad and good. It's bad because I like accuracy. But it's good because at least I don't have to study every line of type on the back of my cards anymore.
Lastly, since I'm talking about Angels, here's a video with "angel" in the title:
Yes, I have finally figured out how to do this. This is big.
I am not a moron anymore.
Well, not about this anyway.