I'm a little late, but here's my Reminiscence Bump post, as popularized by Night Owl Cards. This is a rundown over the years of how I got into card collecting and some cards that are linked to specific memories for me. I'm also throwing in some tunes while I'm at it, documenting how I got into music. ♫
♫ 1985 - I'm attending a friend's birthday party at a local roller rink (hell, it might have been William again, I don't remember). While skating around under the dim lighting of rays bouncing off the mirrorball, "Everybody Wants to Rule the World" comes on over the soundsystem and hits me in a wonderful, unfamiliar way.. the first time music really connects with me.
♫ 1986 - I watch a lot of The Monkees in syndication on weekday afternoons over summer break, being watched (babysat) by family friend Kit, hanging out with her three daughters, Missy, Kristy, and Cindy. Seems like those guys are having a lot of fun on tv. I start making it known that I'd like to be a musician when I grow up. My music collection begins by receiving cassettes of greatest hits albums for my birthday of the Monkees (Then & Now... the Best of The Monkees) and the Beach Boys (The Beach Boys – Do It Again!), the latter of whom I'm a fan of thanks mostly due to "I Get Around" being featured in the film Flight of the Navigator which I like a lot.
(Years later, I would be shocked to learn he wasn't in the Hall of Fame.)
♫ 1987 - I'm riding in a car in Chicago with some family members on our way to my grandparents 50th wedding anniversary party. Somebody asks me about the music I like and I mention I like that "I was standing, you were there" song, which I caught on the radio once or twice, and my cooler older cousin Siobhan perks up and seems to be impressed, "INXS?" Yeah, that one. In a rare moment, I kinda feel cool.
♫ 1988 - My card collection is stagnant for 1988. As for music, my favorite cassettes are Paula Abdul - Forever Your Girl and Roxette - Look Sharp.
♫ 1989 - My card collection still consists of just those few A's cards from William and an oddball or two I wound up with. Cards are totally off my radar, though in hindsight the "overproduction era" was ramping up like never before, so it's almost surprising it hasn't gotten to me yet. As for music, I've found my first official "favorite band" with Def Leppard, being a huge fan of their album Hysteria even though I know I'm a couple years late to it. I'm also into some popular rap, with Rob Base & DJ E-Z Rock's It Takes Two getting a lot of play on my little boombox. This is the year I buy my first "explicit lyrics" cassette tapes-- Guns N' Roses Appetite For Destruction and Tone Lōc's debut album, Lōc-ed After Dark. My mom snatches them behind my back to give a listen as a concerned parent. She returns them without incident-- even says she kinda enjoys that "Take me down to the Paradise City" song-- though I am extremely mortified at this turn of events. Specifically, GNR's "Rocket Queen" is nearly impossible to listen to now, what with the naughty lady noises.
♫ 1990 - My best friend Doug and I are nuts for the two big pop-rap albums ruling the charts, Please Hammer Don't Hurt 'Em and Vanilla Ice's To The Extreme. Nearly every day after school, I hang out at his place and we listen to a side of one of these tapes in his room while goofing off. When Christmas rolls around, my (cool) cousin Siobhan gives me a couple cassettes: New Order Substance and Fine Young Cannibals The Raw & The Cooked. Brilliant move by her taking my love for danceable pop, but guiding it a little further from the mainstream. These albums knock me for a loop and open my eyes to what would soon become known as "alternative" music.
♫ 1991 - I've forsaken the "pop" radio stations I used to listen to (San Diego's Q106 and Z90), and now am a loyal listener of 91X "the cutting edge of rock" (San Diego's "alternative" station). I get a CD player for Christmas and the first two CDs I buy happen to both be from 8 years earlier, 1983: Yes - 90125 (love that "Owner of a Lonely Heart" song!) and my old favorite Def Leppard's Pyromania ("Photograph" might in in the running for my favorite song of all time).
♫ 1992 - I gotta give my mom a lot of credit for shaping my taste in music.. Among the albums I listen to this year are a lot of artists I became familiar with through my mom's record/CD collection, including Paul Simon, Talking Heads, and the Beatles.
♫ 1993 - Actually, what really starts taking priority for my allowance money in 1993 is my music collection, buying lots of CDs. Something about starting high school and music suddenly having a much more important role in your life. My favorite band is now Jane's Addiction (and their new offshoot Porno For Pyros). Also listen to lots of Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins, Nine Inch Nails, Catherine Wheel, Lemonheads' Shame About Ray, and Matthew Sweet's Altered Beast.
♫ 1994 thru 2004 - My cards and comics are packed away in boxes, with no new additions over the next decade save for maybe a random oddball found in a box of cereal or something. I instead get my collecting fix by tracking down every live recording I can find from my favorite bands, mainly Jane's Addiction and related side projects. Pixies, Frank Black, Paw, Dig, and John Frusciante are also among my top artists. Lots of buying bootlegs and trading fellow collectors for live tapes, eventually building up an impressive collection.
♫ 2005 - I'm no longer into Jane's Addiction that much (though I never really turn my back on music I once enjoyed; hell, I still listen to MC Hammer, Roxette and Paula Abdul every once in a while to this day), with the title of my favorite band now belonging to Neutral Milk Hotel. Again, the collector in me compels me to hunt down every circulating live & rare recording of theirs out there. I even spend much of my spare time working on a fansite for the band. I finally finish up college and briefly get a job at a computer shop with my buddy Chris. My days are generally very lonely, having no luck with the ladies or making new friends. My best friend Doug got married a few years back and no longer has much time for hanging out with me other than occasionally having me over to watch a Chargers game. I write and record a lot of my own songs, though no one listen to them. Seriously, 1994 through 2007 were dark times for me.
Saturday, Nov 22, 2008, to be specific.. yeah, that's not from memory but thanks to searching old emails), spending $3.14 + $1 S&H on a Topps 1973 Roberto Clemente. I get a thrill reminiscent of my early collecting days landing a vintage card of the great Roberto Clemente, a mythical figure if there ever was one. Me as a kid would have been blown away! But again, my interest in the hobby is fleeting and I step away for a few more years.
♫ 2008 - My favorite band now would probably have to be Rilo Kiley. I've been listening to them for a few years now. I've got a fansite for them too. I'm also a moderator on a popular fan message board for the band. One night the year prior, I drunkenly flirted with a certain female regular on the forum I had thought was really cool for a while. We ended up sparking a relationship, but she lives way up in Portland, so the long-distance thing is a strain.
♫ 2012 - Man, music-wise, everything seems to blur together around these years. I'm not sure what I was listening to in particular. I'll go with Metric here. I would still find new bands online from time to time, but mostly I got to the point where I stuck to listening to stuff I already liked. I guess that comes with getting old.
The game of Wallet Card, an idea I had come up with at the end of the previous year which I think is a fun concept for the cardsphere. It damn near goes viral and gets attention of collectors online far beyond my blog's normal reach. Feels like I've "made it" as a part of the baseball card collecting scene. My collecting habits expand further as I enter the world of working on vintage sets, deciding to make a run at my favorite set, 1973 Topps.
2032 - I die of heart failure in a storage unit I've been crashing in since the money ran out. Alone with nothing to my name besides my beloved card collection boxed up all around my lifeless body, with no next-of-kin to be found, my collection is auctioned off for a few hundred bucks to a pawn shop asshole who turns a tidy profit on them and then puts a down payment on a mid-priced new card for his teenage son.
And I guess that's pretty much it. These days I've got lots of various collecting project in the works, with my focus for the first time being less on player collections and more on vintage sets and other fun/off-the-wall stuff. Still going strong with the blogging here as 2018 winds down, fortunate to have kind folks reading and interacting, both on the blog and twitter. Lots of incoming cards. Enjoying the hobby very much.
Thanks for reading all this!