Wednesday, February 22, 2017

I freeze at Chinese restaurant buffets, too

One thing I still can't get accustomed to with modern shopping is the sheer variety all in one place. For years I operated in a world with only four channels on my television, a handful of station on the radio and a sports magazine that arrived once a week.

Much like someone who grew up during the depression (my apologies for comparing the '70s to the Great Depression), that period will be with me forever, and I'm still adjusting to the grand smorgasbord that appears before us whenever we fancy.

The best example of my inability to fully grasp this is whenever I select cards on COMC. I absolutely cannot focus. I have a variety of collecting interests, so that plays a part, but I cannot commit myself to a single shopping task and finish it. There is just too much other goodness to absorb.

I had a little bit of cash to spend recently and went straight to my favorite online card site. The first card I threw in the cart was the above Pete Rose In Action card from the 1972 Topps set. It's one of three cards that I needed to complete the set.

You'd think that while I was there, I would grab the other two cards I needed.

But you will not see the '72 base Pete Rose card on this post nor the Tim Foli In Action card.

I didn't bother to nab them.

My attention got diverted.

This card was a no-brainer. As a guy, I think we are all in agreement that Kate Upton is the most stunning Sports Illustrated supermodel to ever walk the earth (and if you disagree, I don't want to hear it, you just sound silly).

From there tastes diverge. But my favorite after Ms. Upton is without a doubt Marisa Miller.

So, I can't for the life of me understand why this card cost under a dollar. It should be at least 50 bucks. Not that I'm complaining.

But, I know what you're saying: this card, at under a dollar, couldn't have possibly gotten in the way of landing those other two 1972 Topps needs.

No, you're right, it couldn't.

Another card did.

I am on record as adoring this insert set from 2003 Topps. I wrote a post quite awhile ago stating that I was collecting this set.

I haven't gotten very far. I have maybe 15 cards from the set and many of those are tied up in my Dodger collection (guess where this one is going?).

The cards seem pretty popular in general, and they're a pain in the ass to find at a reasonable price. Sure $3 might not sound like much, but when you're trying to complete a 100-card insert set, that adds up quickly.

So, when I saw this card -- one of the greatest World Series programs ever -- at a decent price, I grabbed it.

It will probably be another year-and-a-half before I snare another one.

But, really, that card couldn't have cut into my spending on those other two '72s, could it?

No, not really.

But there's another card I landed I must mention.

I saw this card on Nachos Grande's trade bait post. I believe it was one of the framed versions of this card. I probably should have nabbed it then, but I'd rather have the base card.

I wasn't even aware there was a Marvin Harrison Masterpieces card. I interviewed Harrison many times when he played college football at Syracuse, so this card is for a future "Brush With Greatness" post, as I continue to expand outside of baseball in that series.

The card was pretty cheap for an NFL great and card series great (Masterpieces), so I don't think this card, added to the two other cards could have prevented me from getting the other two '72s I needed.

But, still, there was another one:

Of course it's a 1975 buyback card.

As my quest to get as many buybacks from the '75 set continues, I zeroed in on another one of my favorites from that set. I loved this Dave Cash card when I was a kid, it was a prized possession in my very small collection. I may have gone outside my buyback upper spending limit for this card. But it's worth it.

Cash also came with some friends.

 This brings me to at least 120 buybacks from that set (it's either 120 or 121, I need to recount). If I were to devote as much time as, say, Shoebox Legends is devoting to his buyback project, I'd be a lot farther along. But you know my issue with focus.

Truthfully, I may have been able to grab the Foli In Action card if I hadn't bought these few other cards. But I didn't have the money to get all three '72 Topps that I needed, so I decided to distribute my money to other interests and save my "I HAVE COMPLETED 1972 TOPPS" post for another time.

I actually love to see variety come out of one of those little yellow envelopes. It makes me happier than getting 100 cards from one set.

It's kind of like going to a restaurant buffet. Yeah, there is one dish there that you really, really like. But who wants 10 helpings of sesame chicken? There's so much other good stuff on the menu, too.

Still, there's always that time when you go back to the table and think "dammit, I forgot the wontons!"


  1. You and I shop the same way on COMC. In my latest COMC order are cards touching on eight different collecting goals. 8! You're right - it is more fun to receive a lot of different things from the yellow envelope. Besides, if you were to only grab the three '72s, then you'd be done with that set. Sure it feels good to finish but then you would no longer be collecting it! I still have 40 cards to go for my 1972 set (all high numbers) but I'm relishing the eons it is taking me to complete it. I am enjoying having 1972 be on my perennial want list.

  2. FYI: That Harrison is still sitting unclaimed in my trade stack! Hint hint to anyone reading this.

  3. From the 2nd layer of my Craigslist box, I just pulled out three of the WS program cards. 1924, 1974, 1976.

    They are yours if you admit that Kate Upton is not the hottest swimsuit model. You can pick Kathy Ireland. You can pick Elle McPherson. Heck, you can pick Vendela for all I care. Just not Upton. Everybody repeat after me..."Her boobs are uneven." What is seen cannot be unseen.

    1. *Time travels back to 1989* "Yes, I will pick Kathy Ireland." *Time travels back to 2017*.

    2. The time machine changes everything.

  4. If you flip the Rose over its a piece to the Yaz puzzle. After completing the 72 set. I went back and repurchased the 10 cads that make up the Yaz puzzle. You Mets collectors the other puzzle is of Seaver

  5. You pretty much perfectly described how I am on COMC as well, it's the most fun you can have picking out totally random cards on the internet!

  6. That's uncanny. I was just at the chinese buffet for lunch yesterday...but I only like certain things, so I know where to go. Especially the fresh baked donuts for dessert.

  7. Love the Chinese restaurant buffet comparison. I collect so many different things that I rarely finish any sets I'm building... and although I may go grab the combination fried rice (a team/player pc item) two times in a row, I'll always get side tracked by the beef and broccoli (on card autographs).

  8. I thought you were contractually obligated to mention that Dave Cash is out of Proctor High School, Utica, NY, whenever posting his cards.

    Have you seen any '75 buy backs for any of the big rookies in the set, Brett/Yount/Carter/Rice etc? I'd imagine there mark up is less percentage wise than it is for HOF'ers in the middle of their career such as a Ryan, Bench or Rose.

    1. I haven't searched thoroughly at all, but I've never seen buybacks for any of the most expensive cards in the set.

    2. I saw a Gary Carter RC buyback a few weeks ago, but of course it was an auto, hand-numbered to 1/1.. I put in a modest bid on it for kicks, but it ended up well out of my price range, ($250). Sadly I think crazy stuff like that is the only way you'll stumble upton (sic) the top-dollar cards in the set in official "buyback" form. But still though.. dare to dream! :)