Monday, July 4, 2011
The American way
Here in the United States of America, there is the long-standing tradition of the trade post that is among the most basic rights that we as citizens possess. I believe it's there in the Amendments. Some consider it the lost 28th Amendment. But it's there with the rest of them. Freedom of religion. Freedom of speech. Freedom of the press. Right to assemble. Right to show off loot in respective trades.
As you know, some people are trying to strip us of this basic right. They claim it's boring. That it's outlived its usefulness. That it cheapens the blog experience.
That's their opinion. Freedom of speech, you know.
But for me, there is nothing more patriotic, more indicative of my makeup as a U.S. citizen than producing a heartfelt trade post. A trade post is intrinsically American, dammit! If the trade post is banned then what next? Making contest-hyping illegal? (Well, OK, maybe I can live with that one).
So, there is nothing better than I can do to pay tribute to my country and my forefathers than to deliver a trade post here on Independence Day!
Don't like it?
You can kiss my U-S-of-Trade-Post-A.
So, lift your head up from that plate of potato salad or take a break from getting your fingers blown off and do what really is in the spirit of the holiday -- gather round and see what Spiegel sent me recently.
I'll start with an American-born citizen who was actually born in the city in which I am celebrating the 4th of July. In fact, he lived in a house next to my grandmother's home during his younger years. I've mentioned that before. So now I'm boring you on multiple levels.
This, by the way, is the CyberStats version of the '95 Hershiser card.
There's Orel again. Except now he's both a Dodger and an Indian. In America, everything is possible. Especially on a baseball card in the '90s.
In the U.S., we are taught to be accepting of viewpoints that are contrary to ours because this here is a free country. Lots of people forget this though. Lots and lots of people.
But I don't. Because I had to learn to be accepting of Kevin Brown in a Dodger uniform for several years. And I continue to be accepting of the abundance of Kevin Brown cards that depict him in a Dodger uniform.
I don't hold it against Spiegel for sending me a bunch of cards of that overpaid, injury-prone, cranky-puss.
Look, Spiegel even sent more of Mr. Brown! Ha-ha! Isn't that nice? I'm so accepting. I'm not bothered at all that I have almost 200 cards of this annoying man.
Really! USA! I accept you! I might confuse you with Kenny Rogers all the time -- because you were both jerk-face pitchers -- but my confusion is in a haze of wonderful acceptance.
But I refuse to be accepting of a stupid card set. Absolutely not. There is nothing American about accepting ridiculous card sets. In fact, it is the American way to trash these sets so relentlessly and mercilessly that innocent people stumbling upon card blogs have no choice but to think that these card sets murdered collectors' families and set their homes ablaze.
I also do not accept this card. How very unpatriotic of you, Spiegel. ... Oh, I get it. This is a joke.
There's that trade humor that is so much a part of the collecting spirit and can only be conveyed through the trade post. You know bippings and all that stuff.
But don't bip me with Buchholz cards. That's not American. That's Russian. Or Indonesian. Or Wookie.
Now that is much better. There is nothing more American than a serial-numbered card of a pointless set. The silly U.S. collector just sees the pretty blue and starts singing The Battle Hymn of the Republic. I can't explain it. You have to be American. And a collector. And kind of weird.
These two fellows weren't even born in the U.S.. But they both had flourishing (or semi-flourishing) careers in America. That's what's possible in this here country. That and trade posts. And big dumb movies about children's toys ruling the world.
Here's another thing that's American: getting an ungodly amount of cash for your client (and some for you, too) regardless of whether your client's body decides it's not going to pitch ever again. You can do that in the U.S. Isn't it great?
You can also trade away the most talented player your team has had in a couple of decades, you know, just because (what was the reason Fox did that again?). Everything is possible in this fine country.
You can even find something nice to say about one of the least popular players to ever wear a major league ...
Ah forget it. Even in the U.S., some things really aren't possible.
You may return to your burnt burgers and melted ice cream. I hope that this trade post isn't the highlight of your 4th.
But if it is, you can credit our forefathers for throwing in that final amendment. They knew what was best.