Monday, April 8, 2019

Let's start at the ending (card show report, part 1)


So, Angus and I peeled through the nickel boxes yesterday, as time and noise and even that guy who was too close to me faded into the background while those boxes yielded better and better cards.

Then we heard the announcement: in 10 minutes dealers would start driving vehicles into the building and pack up their wares. I had no idea the show was that close to ending. And unlike other times when dealers packed up a full 45 minutes before the end of the show, it was really the end of the show. Four o'clock baby.

That's what nickel boxes do to you, I've found, now that I'm a veteran of something I had never seen before last year. You lose all track of time.

There's also something else nickel boxes do: they keep you from focusing on the cards you really want. I'm not complaining about anything I bought yesterday at the card show, certainly nothing from the nickel boxes. But I know some of the cards that were my heart's desire, I left out there somewhere, because those nickel boxes took up all that time.

It's one of the reasons why I waited 'til the end to check out those boxes. I wanted to get some other goodies before I settled in for: holy crap, that's only FIVE CENTS? THIS ONE TOO?

This card show Sunday turned out to be so good that I'm splitting it into two posts, which I don't like doing at all. I like to convey my whole experience in one post. But I'm afraid everyone's attention span will wane if I pack everything into this post. In short, I traveled down with Angus of Dawg Day Cards, and he gave me some great stuff. Then we met, Alan, the guy who shipped me all those Dodger photos, and he gave me some great stuff. And then, I shopped for some great stuff myself.

So let's start at the ending -- the nickel boxes -- and I'll get to the other stuff tomorrow.

The first card I pulled was the Reggie Jackson up top just because I can't turn away a Reggie card no matter how unbaseball it is. I still don't know what it is. It mentions race car driver Rusty Wallace on the back.


These nickel boxes, as I mentioned on my last card show post (a whole six months ago!) contain cards from the big four sports and there are sections devoted to football (where Angus parked) and baseball and basketball.

The digging started slowly for me and I looked at the sign that said "must buy 20 cards!" and wondered if I'd get up to 20. The above six Topps black gold cards from 1994 made me feel a little better. The scans don't want you to know, but the above guys are Puckett, Salmon, Palmeiro, Olerud, Ventura and Montgomery.



If I wanted to go for the 2003 Topps set, I could do a decent dent with the nickel box cards. There's plenty of it in there, and for 5 cents a card, it's pretty tempting. But I kept it to just these five cards.



Look closely. Yep, that's night owl buying a Barry Bonds card. So it must be from 2006 because that's the only time it's appropriate. In my continuing under-the-radar quest to complete all of the '06 Topps insert sets, this happened to be a card I needed. Five cents score!



Some other five-centers that I couldn't resist.


Angus flipped me this card and asked me if I knew her. Well ... knew of her. I couldn't say I did. But I wanted to know more. We flipped over the card and read the back. "GQ cover model" Yup, OK, that's definitely worth a nickel! In the pile!

But most of the nickel buys involved Dodger cards and most of the recent-Dodger variety.

I'll start with the less surprising and then go toward the more-so:


A Gypsy Queen team need from last year's set. I bought two others from this set, too, but already had them. But so what? That was a 10-cent mistake!



An insert need from last year. I barely pay attention to inserts anymore. There are too many and they feature all the same players under contrived themes. But if it's 5 cents, I am there.



This card, coupled with one Angus gave me, completed the 2018 Heritage High Numbers team set for me. It wouldn't be the only Dodgers team set that the nickel box would complete.



Is it this one? Well, I don't really know. I never put up a want list for the 2018 Holiday Snowflake set. But I own a couple others already. Pretty cool that I didn't succumb to inflated prices for those retail boxes in November when I can buy everything I need for 5 cents apiece.


Walker Buehler rookie card for 5 cents. I have this card already, but for 5 cents, I will take 5 more. Five cents was NOT what this card was going for in other places in the building.


I picked this card out just because I had forgotten that Scott Van Slyke ever appeared in Heritage. Then I couldn't remember if he was in the main set or the High Numbers set. I turned the card over to look at the number and ...


It's one of those fake-gum-stained-variation-backs. It's the first time I've ever seen one in person. Found in the nickel box.



Now we've arrived at the 2019 cards. Yes, 2019 card in the nickel box. There were a whole bunch of them. I probably could have completed Series 1 with a handful of wrapped nickels. HEY SHOPPER, PUT AWAY THOSE PACKS ON THE WALMART SHELVES! 2019 TOPPS IS SELLING FOR A NICKEL APIECE!

The above two cards finished off my Dodgers Series 1 set. Unfortunately, I bought the other two cards that finished the set earlier in the day, somewhere else, for more money, because I had no idea that cards that  debuted two months ago would be selling for a nickel.

I figured, what the hell, if they're gonna be a nickel, I'll grab a few that interest me.



Yes, 2019 inserts were a nickel each, too. More on that in a bit.

There are things you are willing to do when you find out cards are five cents that you wouldn't do other wise and so I did this:


This is probably the best aspect of 2019 Topps, the stadium overhead shots. I snagged 15 of them (that's 75 cents), which I'm guessing is all of the ones in Series 1 (I assume the other 15 will appear in Series 2).

This dealer is going to have to be around in July so I can get all the other stadium shots in Series 2 for a nickel each.


So, yeah, there were even 2019 parallels in the nickel box. I set aside a few for fellow bloggers and readers. Close to half of the cards I pulled from the nickel boxes I'm not showing because they're going to other people.

But one group I'm keeping for myself:


I just love the 150 Years insert set and it's something I probably will never finish (anything that requires this kind of dedication must be vintage). But I definitely will take whatever I can and five cents per card is an easy steal.



This card ... FIVE CENTS.



My very first look at 2019 Donruss (no thank you), were these two five-cent cards. Yes, Panini, that's all you're worth.



Just a handful of others.

As I turned to look behind me, I saw the cars parked where dealers' tables once were. I counted up my cards and came to 110. I handed a five-dollar bill to the amiable dealer, quite happy with my day at the show.

When I exited those doors, I had spent only half of the money that I had brought with me. That had never happened before.

Part of me was sad, because if I had just had more time (stupid night time job), I could have gotten several other cards -- I had the cash! But, of course this just means I can spend that on some cards online!

Yup, it was a pretty productive card show.

How productive? Sorry, that comes tomorrow.

12 comments:

  1. Does the gum stain variation still smell like bubblegum? I recall when I pulled them during the group break that the cards had a bubblegum scent. I'm curious how long those chemicals (?) last on the cardboard!

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    1. I can't really smell anything besides cardboard.

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    2. Hmm, okay. I was curious how long the scent would last. It was such a weird gimmick to start with, I have no idea how (or why) Topps decided to go that route.

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  2. Dime boxes make me lose track of time, and nickel boxes basically cause me to fall into some kind of weird vortex where I lose all track of time and all my senses funnel into the BASEBALL CARDS I'M BUYING FOR FIVE CENTS. Five-centers are rare, but definitely worth the time and effort, as I think your haul shows! I too like the 150 Years of Baseball inserts -- Topps did a real nice job with those.

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  3. When Night Owl says that I parked myself beside him, he's right. I saw a chair, pulled it over to me and sat down to go through the two monster boxes of football cards. I was also shocked to hear the announcement that the show was about to end. I missed going back to most of the places that I told myself that I would too. Oops.

    I'll have my blog posts up in the next couple of days.

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  4. The 5¢ Buehler rookie... and 2019 Topps team cards were my favorites. Awesome haul!

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  5. The top card comes from 1995 Upper Deck NASCAR. (Might be off on the year). It was part of the program where people from other sports got a chance to see what NASCAR was all about, and if they were under contract with UD, they got a card. Most teams today employ former football players on the crew.

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  6. nice! you found some real steals at a nickel per! a GUM back?? Wowzer! I did another show over the weekend too and came home with around 1000 nickle cards after 30 mins spent digging...which was actually 4 fours. Time stands still in these moments!

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  7. Aw man, I like quarter inserts - nickel inserts would be epic. That's the only way I'd try for anything like the 150th ones, but they'd all have to be in there.
    If you're really shrewdly planning for a weekend show, you'd have to go the first day and find the nickel & dime boxes and then come back the next day and spend the whole time in front of them.

    P.S. Mmmm Genevieve....

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  8. A ton of cool cards. Bip looked a bit like Jr. In his card. I really need to get to a show where I can really spend time digging through boxes. Great post.

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  9. "My very first look at 2019 Donruss (no thank you), were these two five-cent cards. Yes, Panini, that's all you're worth."

    You still overpaid.

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