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Parallels and the '70s do mix

When most card collectors think of parallels, they think of present day cards, or at least cards from the last 25 years or so.

Some may think back to the 1990s, which is when the mass production of the parallel began. Some may even cite 1989 Donruss, as I have, with its Grand Slammers inserts that came in a variety of top-and-bottom colors on the front.

Parallels have been running through the hobby for decades and decades, long before anyone even called them parallels. Many collectors see parallels as a plague, there are so many now that it's impossible for the brain to keep up with them -- and if you do, you're seen as a genuine nut case with way too much time on their hands.

I like dabbling in parallels but try not to waste a lot of money on them, I chase way less of them than I did 10 years ago. For my parallel excitement now, I go back to the 1970s. Yes, the '70s had parallels, even if they weren't intentional.

I've posted about chasing the Ron Cey MSA discs from 1976/77 before. The "cards" aren't much to look at, I knew that when I was a kid and saw these things live, but since they come from that time when I was a kid, they're a great bunch of fun.
So, except for some tinting variations, which is probably just the color fading on some of them over time,  and some variation in type sizes, the discs look quite identical on the front, except for Crane, which always has to be different.
But the joy in these discs are on the back.

Now, those of you who remember previous posts about these are stammering, "wait, wait ... there's NINE now???"

Yes, I've added a couple, mostly on the occasion of Cey's birthday last month. I've mentioned that there's not a lot of Cey cards to chase that I don't already have, except for some modern parallels and the 1981 All-Star insert that you saw at the top of the post (you were wondering when I'd get to that). And that All-Star thing is barely a card. So discs, it is.

Since the last time, I've added the blank back and the Detroit Caesars, which just came in the mail yesterday. The Caesars disc was the first of the pricier ones that I added, but now there is a full baseball lineup of Cey discs! If I get another nine, they can play a game!

Here is what's left for me to get according to TCDB:


Customized Sports Discs

Holiday Inn

Red Barn (there's a variation of this without the address, but I don't know if I'll chase that one).


Safelon Super Star Lunch Bags

Towne Club


If you count all those up, that comes to eight, not nine. But I could either get the Red Barn variation, too, or add the Burger Chef or Wiffle Ball discs I have, although those are smaller -- and the Wiffle Ball one is pink, not yellow.

Anyway, all that matters is that they fit nicely in the four-pocket pages that I have for them, not that you have to worry about corner dings!

I've already ordered up a 10th disc just to seal this post into place. It's the Towne Club one. And my eye is on another one, too. I only have a general idea of which ones are more difficult so I don't know when I'll hit a wall but until then, I'll have fun chasing these unintentional parallels of my all-time favorite player.


I don't often see those discs in the wild. Cadaco is another story. But those others, I think I have a complete set of the Isalys, and just 5 or 6 others of Braves (mainy Hank as a Brewer).Jim Wynn too comes to mind. See what you've done, now I am going to have to see what I have. Nah, JK I don't have time to go through those PC books these days. Congrats on the new adds.
Nick said…
It amazes me how many different versions of these discs exist. I'd go insane trying to collect them all.
Zippy Zappy said…
Great homage to how the famed T206 tobacco cards had different backs and were therefore parallels too.
steelehere said…
Just be glad they didn't make a Ron Cey Bantam Soda FBI disc in 1981 or 1982. Finding the Steve Garvey in those sets is next to impossible since they were released in Quebec.
Fuji said…
This is a fun project. I've considered doing a run of these for someone... but I haven't even picked a subject. Gives me something to look forward to down the line though.
Bo said…
I'm not usually a fan of back variations but these are great. Fun old-ish advertising.
Grant said…
I've always very much enjoyed these back variations. Thank you for sharing. Keep us updated!
Michael D said…
Great collection idea. I would have never thought about the backs being a parallel even though I knew they were different.
AdamE said…
I hit the player collection wall a long time ago. Back variations didn't stall me very long though so I had to broaden myself to postcards and 8x10s. Surprisingly postcards have back parallels too and have been hard for me to track down.
carlsonjok said…
That Red Barn card brought back memories. There was Red Barn not far from my grandmother's house in Rochester.

If you want to talk parallels, at its peak Red Barn had between 300 and 400 locations. Be thankful you don't have OCD because that many parallels of the address version would be maddening.
bryan was here said…
I picked up a few of the Isaly's ones because of the local history to me. Those were from the Youngstown, Ohio/Pittsburgh area. Isaly's is famous for their chip-chopped ham.
Jafronius said…
Real parallels! Good luck with the hunt!
Jon said…
I only have one, but I'm a big fan of these discs, or rather I'm a big fan of their backs.