Tuesday, November 5, 2013

A pack break from split-personality night owl


The year that I started this blog. The year in which I was buying modern cards at a semi-ravenous rate. The year in which I still had money.

I was a happy owl then. All you have to do is read those early blog posts with all the exclamation points to know that. Sure, I'll never be confused for the bubble-headed bleach blonde who comes on at five, but I was less of a cranker in those days.

What 2008 night owl and 2013 night owl have in common though is neither one has a respectable hobby shop. So a hobby pack of these 2008 Trading Card History cards is something new for both of us.

Actually, 2013 night owl knows that the cards aren't new -- he also knows he's probably seen a number of these already, might have a few in his collection, and probably can't give away the ones he pulls.

But let's not spoil it for 2008 night owl. This was very nicely sent by reader Stewart, who also sent me some Dodgers, which you'll see some other time. Right now I want to open this pack -- and 2008 night owl REAAAAAAAAAAALLLY wants to open this pack.

Let's go:

Card one: Ryan Howard, Phillies

2008 night owl comment: All right! Ryan Howard! What a year this guy is having! 140 RBIs! The Phillies are my Plan B team! Second-favorite! I'm not crazy about the '82 Topps design. Too much pink with the Dodgers! Cool first card though!

2013 night owl comment: Jesus, could I scan at least one card without crums and other nasty stuff showing up on the card? I'm not scanning this thing again. I don't have any time. And does Howard play anymore? I never see him. Doesn't matter, I hate the Phillies.

Card two: David Wright, Mets

2008 night owl comment: Hey! David Wright! A lot of my fellow Mets bloggers -- boy, there sure are a lot of you guys -- like this guy! I'll bet I don't have this card for long! I don't know what set this card represents. Some old-timey thing.

2013 night owl comment: Good gosh, what an ugly card. Nobody that young should be appearing on a card that ancient looking. Wright should have a bun in his hair and old lady glasses. I still don't know what set this is. I suppose I could look at the back ... Ah, it's 1909 T204 Ramly. I'll forget that in 20 minutes. By the way, where did all the Mets bloggers go?

Card three: Chin-Lung Hu, Dodgers

2008 night owl comment: Hu let the dogs out!!!! Gee, there sure are a lot of Chin-Lung Hu cards this year! I'm glad I've got this one though. Now I have 15 cards of Hu from this year! I just wish he'd play better!

2013 night owl comment: I think I have 12 of this card now. Inching toward bipping material. Also the fact that I have 39 cards of Hu from 2008 and only two cards of Don Mattingly from 1984 is probably a comment on everything that's wrong in the world.

Card four: Jimmy Rollins, Phillies

2008 night owl comment: Second Phillies card! Yay! Last year's MVP! I like him. I wish he was on the Dodgers. Should he have won the MVP? I don't know. I don't vote!

2013 night owl comment: (*withholds writing about Rollins for fear he might say something semi-positive and sabermetricians will find him and burn his house down*).

Card five: Ken Griffey Jr., Reds

2008 night owl comment: Griffey! I always like Griffey cards. He's always interesting to watch. Didn't like when he wore his cap backwards back in the day, but I've adjusted to it! Hope he keeps playing!

2013 night owl comment: What's that spot on Griffey's arm? Does he have a birthmark? How did I not know that? What's with the spot next to the Reds name? Is that supposed to be a copyright? That's terrible. These cards are too slick and too thin.

And that's the end of the pack.

I think I've gotten more unpleasant about cards over the years.

It's not that I didn't criticize cards in 2008, I was just a little more enthusiastic and bubbly about the whole card scene then. It was still all new (I had just returned to modern cards two years prior). It was still an adventure.

I still get excited, but it's mostly about older cards. Things are different now, both for me and the cards on the shelves.

But night owl is still night owl and I still like cards and opening packs, and I will continue to blog about cards and opening packs.

Just with fewer exclamation points.


  1. I once bought five of those packs at a card show not knowing they would be the same exact players, do'h.

  2. so...you won't tell me about the plane crash with a gleam in your eye?

  3. such a pity Hu didn't play first. sweet signature though. bip me with it.

  4. Actual old T204 cards are incredibly gorgeous. Leaf did a insert set with the design a while back that looked very nice.

    Every time Topps touches that design it looks hideous.

    It'll probably be 2014 Gypsy Queen's design.

  5. I like split personality Night Owl. It's like watching a rookie and a veteran entering a major league stadium on opening day. Rookie is wide-eyed and excited. Veteran is noticing the crappy TV in the visitor's locker room that didn't get replaced in the off-season.

  6. 2008 Fuji comment: Great post. Very unique and creative. Maybe one of these days I'll start a blog.

    2013 Fuji comment: Awesome post. Very unique and creative. Why the heck didn't I think of this and use it in my blog?

  7. I can only comment since 2012. Lets see..
    2012: Baseball cards! wow So that's what I've always watched on TV and finaly have in my own hands!
    2013: Ohhh NEXT PACK PLEASE!

    So I've changed a 'bit' in a solo year. I blame you all and your blogs, for enlight me and teaching me so much about baseball cards in such a short period of time.