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A little more of everything

That's the first line of a note in the latest fantastic card package from Dave. "A little more of everything," is the best way to sum up the contents. I could easily break this up into six different posts, but what fun is that?

No, you need to see this in its totality. Gaze upon the splendor. Marvel at the magnificence. Bathe in the bounty. We're going to cover a little more of everything.

I'll start with this:

That's a rack pack of 1987 Topps, carefully selected for the Fernando Valenzuela all-star glossy showing in the first panel.

See, Dave takes me seriously when I say I want to try to complete 1987 Topps passively. I don't want to intentionally buy a 1987 Topps card. And I certainly don't want to put up a want list. I'd like to see how close I can come to doing this. I'm looking forward to opening this rack pack and seeing how many I need.

Random Dodgers, most of which I'm sure fill holes (we'll see later). Yes, I put PlayStation advertisements in my Dodger binder. I need that Puig pose in there somewhere.

These aren't all the Dodgers in the package. You know how I play the game here. Best stuff last.

A couple Sabres from the days when I knew every Sabre on the team. These are from 1990-91 Topps, just after I covered a handful of Sabres games.

One of the best parts of hockey cards from this period and earlier are the backs. I'm fairly certain Topps purposely went with blue backs, or "cool colors," for hockey cards to evoke the feeling of ice. As a baseball card collector, I was always jealous of hockey card backs.

Randy Smith of the Buffalo Braves. A little more of everything, people!

As you know, I don't collect basketball, but this is different. The Braves are Buffalo history. They were before my time, but I remember my grandfather briefly mentioning them and I vaguely recall reading accounts in the old Courier-Express of the team moving to San Diego when I was a kid visiting Buffalo for the summer.

Randy Smith is the most memorable Brave and he and I attended the same college. Buffalo State College is proud of its alumnus and I'm sure it's proud of Randy, too.

Random '56s! I get the biggest kick out of the Jim Wilson card. It appears that Wilson is fielding at first base, and lunging for an errant throw. Not the most routine play there.

Night Cardage. I can always count on Dave for night cards, and a wide variety, too. These aren't even close to all of them. I'm saving a bunch (and probably these, too) for Awesome Night Card, including one that I cannot wait to show because I had no idea it was a night card.

I know. The suspense, your brain cannot handle.

There were so many great, old Buffalo Bills cards in this package, and you're going to see most of them. The 1974 Topps football set has got to be the most literally designed set of all-time, much like 1982 or 1983 Donruss. The design screams "LOOK! This is Football! Goal posts! Am I subtle enough for you?"

By the way, as a kid I had no idea Joe Ferguson was also a Sabres quarterback. It took until the '80s -- and the catcher Joe Ferguson no longer being in baseball -- for me to catch on.

How many Buffalo Bills cards? Well, there were these six from 1973 Topps! I confess I don't know early '70s Bills very well. It's O.J. and that's about it.

Speaking of O.J.:

My name is A.C. You know who I am, god dammit.

Now we are in football heaven. This is the set. This is the set that I want to complete someday. 1977 Topps. I love these so much.

And I especially love this card:

Find me a sadder person on a trading card. I believe it does not exist.

This is the other football set besides '77 Topps that I collected heavily, 1979 Topps. These are pretty cool, although the bottom two guys on the right look like they're wearing Lions jerseys. That's not pretty cool.

I remember owning the Merv Krakau card and almost being appalled at how old he seemed. Why are they letting 52-year-old guys play football? It turns out he was 27 at the time. And I'm relieved to see he's still with us.

Also, I hoped you noticed the Bills had two guys named Dennis Johnson on the team.

Thanks to Dave, I am four cards short of completing the team set!

These are from 1981. I recognize more of the players, but not the design. I had completely quit collecting football cards by the '80s. Not a sniff, until the Pro Sets started showing up.

More football to come, but I need to show you this first:

1970 Topps set the record for bats. You throw in the Jose Laboy card I showed previously, the Jay Johnstone and Juan Rios and Gerry Moses and Harmon Killebrew cards from this set and there is no contest.

Gail Hopkins wants to make it a contest, with his batmobile traveling in the background, but it's not.

And since I showed this 1972 high number that Dave sent, let's see the others:

Are those orange trees behind Pat Jarvis and his teammates? Please say they are.

Del Rice is a manager. Topps doesn't want to tell you that.

Bob Burda's airbrushed hat is blocking everything.

OK, back to football. 1971 Topps football is a wonderful set. If I had any clue or memory of the players on these cards, I'd collect it in an instant. But it will remain one of those "greatest looking sets I'll never collect".

This is from 1969. These cards look almost a decade older than 1969. But the best part are the backs:

Black backs are fantastic.

All of these football cards have finally convinced me to start a binder with non-baseball sports cards in it. Yes, all of my non-baseball has been suffering in boxes. But it's just not right to have cards like this relegated there. A new binder awaits.

OK, nothing but baseball from here on out:

A 1953 Topps of backup catcher Dixie Howell! This is starting to convince me that completing the '53 Topps Dodger set is a good possibility! Stop whispering about Jackie Robinson. You're killing the mood.

Yay! High-numbered and expertly-cut Johnny Podres means I am only a Koufax and a league-leader card away from finishing the '64 Dodgers team set. Even I can do that before the year is out.

Final card. It's a 1939 Play Ball Dolph Camilli. Damn, that's a sweet card.

Dave is my Dolph Camilli supplier. Even he doesn't know where they're coming from all of a sudden.

That is a terrific and varied package. I'm stunned by some of the cards that I didn't even show, but this post has gone on too long.

"A little more of everything" not only gave me lots of good stuff for the collection, but a couple of future blog posts and convinced me to better organize some of my collection.

Don't underestimate collecting a little more of everything. It comes in handy.


Ryan said…
Beautiful. All of it....just wonderful! Can't wait for your 64 Dodgers team set post, Night Owl! - happy 4th, Ryan


Lots of sweet cards there.
Tony L. said…
Those are just awesome. I love the Al Cowling reference/card. Isn't Reggie McKenzie now the Raiders GM?
Jeff Jones said…
Man what a package, that '69 Bills logo is awesome
Billy Kingsley said…
Not too often you see the cartoon make it to the front of the Topps card. If I collected football, the Bills would be the team I followed...for obvious reasons, I hope.
P-town Tom said…
For a second there I thought you might have been a Dawes fan. Their song, "A Little Bit of Everything", is one of my favorites. Not quite verbatim with your post's title though.
Have a great holiday weekend.
Oh, and nice cards! I especially liked the multiple bat cards.
Mark Hoyle said…
Very well rounded package.
Stubby said…
I love the 1969 football set. Or at least the first series where the colors were full bleed and the backs were black as coal. Series two had white borders, for some reason, and the backs were.....less black? But, for my money, those are the best card backs Topps has ever done. This was the first football set I ever tried to complete (I'd buy a few packs of the Phillys in the mid 60s, but they didn't hold nearly the allure for me, so a few packs was all I'd buy). Happy to say I finished the set (albeit in the 80s) and look at it often. That's one of the best features of the early football and basketball sets--they were small enough to complete and, aside from Namath (whom, thankfully, I got 3 of out of packs), not a lot are expensive.