Friday, February 19, 2010
Missing in action
I am always surprised when I come across cards from the junk wax era that are new to me.
The junk wax era approximately spans the years from 1986 through 1993, and it's a period in which my collecting was very sporadic. Here is a breakdown of my collecting habits during that time:
1986: Do cards come with beer? No? Screw 'em
1987: Do cards come with beer? No? Screw 'em
1988: Do cards come with beer? No? Screw 'em
1989: Collected as if cards were made out of hops and malted barley.
1990: Spent the entire year trying not to get fired. No time for cards.
1991: Sick of obsessing over work, I bought cards to calm myself down.
1992: Became a card-obsessed fiend.
1993: Sick of obsessing over cards, I cut my habit in half. But I still bought a little of everything (and a lot of Upper Deck).
So, if you drew that up on a graph, it'd be all over the place. Peaks and valleys everywhere. But it's safe to say that 1989 and 1992/93 were my biggest collecting years.
But 1992/93 eclipsed all else because unlike 1989, I collected a wide variety of brands in 1992/93. Topps, Fleer, Donruss, Score, Upper Deck, anything that was available. And the stores that I went to DID have it all, which is surprising, because I lived in a backwater town in the early '90s.
So that gets me to the Action Packed All-Stars card at the top of the post. According to what I've read, these came out in either 1992 or 1993, smack in the middle of my peak collecting period. How in the world did these elude my awareness? Were they available in stores? How did one come across these? Because I didn't hear of Action Packed at all until I started this blog.
As you know, the cards are a bit odd. I don't know what the card stock is but it has the look and feel of a greeting card. The corners are rounded, the image is raised off the surface, and the black borders chip if you merely look at them. But I like them, even if they were sneaky little elusive suckers.
Recently, Daniel of Pack Addict opened a box of these, and he had some doubles available. I requested the Dodgers. Fortunately, he had doubles of all of the Dodgers. So now I have the whole team set! (Except some parallels, I believe).
Here they are:
Kind of quaint, but in a good way. They remind me of something my grandmother would give me when I was a kid.
The Labine card is my favorite.
The best part, of course, is that they are greats of the past. I really would have appreciated that right around 1992, because the Dodgers were horrid then. Last-place losers. And I was sick of pulling guys like Dave Hansen and Mitch Webster.
The Pack Addict also sent me some more modern-looking Dodgers:
I think he spied my want list because just about all of these cards hit want lists needs. Here are a few more:
Very nice. Thanks a bunch Daniel.
I'd like to think I now know about every card set from the junk wax era. But I have a feeling that somehow there's a sneaky set waiting to spring itself on me.
A collector's work is never done.