I started thinking about the topic of this post even before I saw this image today on the Twitter page of @halocline_gg.
I immediately breathed a sigh of relief upon seeing the photo. This hobby disaster had nothing to do with me.
To run into a sign like this -- if it involved baseball -- would be deflating. And that's why I was relieved that it was targeting a product -- and collectors -- that are so far removed from the way I collect.
Here are the things that I don't care about concerning 2019-2020 Optic Mega Boxes:
1. It's Panini
2. It's basketball
3. It's basketball players on Panini cards.
There are few cards that I know I will never buy, but current basketball cards are definitely in that category.
And here's the exercise: since I have a wide variety of card interests and lots of things that I would buy, I tried to think of cards I would never buy. Ever. Not on a whim. Not on a dare. Never.
I came up with a few. Let's start with the topic du jour:
1. Current basketball cards
Nobody freak out, this is not my card. I don't even know if it's the card everyone wants. I just saw the price it was selling for and the player and figured it'd be a reason why people are tearing up card shelves.
There is no chance that I would pick up a box or pack of current basketball cards. I have zero interest. In fact, the only basketball cards that intrigue me are those cards on tremendous designs from the early 1970s. I may never pick up any of those either, yet it's a possibility.
But modern hoops? I will avoid the fray.
2. Buybacks that aren't from 1975 Topps
You've seen plenty of buyback cards on my blog.
The vast majority are from 1975 Topps. That's because I'm trying to complete that set in buyback form. And I'm doing that because I think buybacks are stupid and I want some sort of meaning to come from them.
To me, buybacks will always be ruined cards as long as that stamp is defacing the card. And I'll never buy a non-75 one. What's the point? I can just get the actual card without the stamp.
3. Cut signature cards
Like buybacks, cut signature cards ruin cardboard. What was once a lovely 1953 Topps card of Pittsburgh twirler Cal House has been chopped up and shoved into a pointless border. It's the card equivalent of a kidnapping and stuffing the victim in a trunk.
It looks ugly. It's lost its meaning. It's practically heartbreaking.
If I was an autograph collector, I could see the point of getting a card like this if it's the only way you can get that player's autograph. But I'm not an autograph collector and, once again, what a relief.
4. Current Leaf cards
This card is from a 2019 Leaf set that just came out. Kody Hoese is a top Dodgers prospect.
You know me, I'm a Dodgers fan who likes as many Dodgers cards as I can get. But I will be able to avoid this card all day. I'll be able to avoid any current Leaf Dodgers card because, good god, are they atrocious.
The images are lousy, there are no logos anywhere, the designs are brutal. I feel like I'm wasting money just viewing the image.
5. Soccer cards
All right the previous four items are likely not too controversial for many readers of this blog. But now I've arrived at a couple things that a lot of people like.
I can't get into soccer. Not that I've tried much, but there is nothing about the game that I find interesting or exciting. It's painful to watch. I watched plenty of the college and high school variety and I know that's not top-of-the-line soccer, but it's not going to matter to me. I don't care.
That follows that I know almost nothing about who plays soccer or what the leagues are, which also follows that I know almost nothing about the cards.
Those are ingredients for me staying far, far, far away from soccer cards.
6. Garbage Pail Kids cards
Many collectors who grew up in the '80s adore these cards and find them quite humorous.
I was too old for them (I think I was in college when the first GPK cards came out). Also gross-out humor doesn't appeal to me. If you're going to go the gross-out route, you need to have something else to draw me in. Wacky Packages had something else: a parody of a product. GPK just has rhymes and alliteration. That's not going to get me to buy a card of a cartoon showing some kid with boils all over him.
You'll notice I picked one of the least offensive GPK cards I could find. I can't even deal with them showing up on my blog let alone owning one.
So, anyway, that's about all I could think of that I would never buy.
There are plenty other products or sports that don't interest me or I don't like. But there are always chances I could buy Panini Donruss or wrestling cards or cards from some movie I don't like just because the actress is cute. The chance is always there for many products.
I'm just very pleased that all the card commotion is about this particular product, from a company and a sport that doesn't interest me in the least.
Now, I've gone through this entire post without touching on the controversy over this whole NBA Optic thing, and that is limiting customers in what they can buy off of shelves.
In general, I am not someone who thinks that cards should be sold behind a counter or glass at retail outlets. I even dislike it in card shops, although I understand the reasons there. Cards should be available to the masses to purchase at their whim. If they want one box, fine. If they want 20, fine. As long as they have the cash.
The people who walk into a Target and load 30 boxes of Topps Update into their cart to sell at a massive mark-up price online are exhibiting pretty jerky behavior, and maybe because of that a special case has to be made.
But overall, I'm not crazy about the trend.
And since this has been a whole post about what I don't like, here are a couple of cards I definitely DO like and I definitely do buy:
They arrived from Jeff of Cardboard Catastrophes and they knocked off two more numbers from my 1956 Topps want list.
They are beautiful, phenomenal even.
And I will buy them until I can't buy them no more -- or until I complete the set.