Monday, June 29, 2020

ignorable filler post: 1991 Cardboard Dreams #7 Bo Jackson

Dang it, guys.. I did it again! I accidentally went out of order with this set. I jumped to #8 Michael Jordan in the previous installment, skipping over #7 Bo Jackson. Wasn't on purpose, but I guess I was swept up in The Last Dance hype, lol. I suppose card number doesn't really matter much unless you're working on the set, or maybe a frankenset, or maybe you're one of the very few collectors who collect certain numbers, like the No. 5 Collector guy and how Tom at Angels In Order likes cards that are #444. But for most of us, card number is rarely something we worry much about. But I still feel like a bad set-blogger for the taboo faux pas of going out of order. I have not yet made such a mistake on my 1991 MusiCards blog, thankfully.

Not the best likeness of Bo, but overall a neat two-sport card. Funny how I was just talking in my latest post (editor's note: the first part of this post was drafted a while back; I've posted a few times since) about the White Sox rehauling their uniforms several times over the years until finally finding a fit with colors most equated in sports to the NFL Raiders. This card shows both for ya. I never thought about it, but it sure is funny that 1991, the year they switched to those uniforms, was the year they signed Bo after he had recently retired from football. Having a former Raiders hero on the squad really must've helped embolden and validate their gutsy uniform decision. I don't know about you guys, but at my middle school around '91-92, the new black White Sox stuff was considered the coolest. Probably also because popular rappers wore it sometimes. I never had a Sox hat (which still fills me with a gentle wave of regret to this day), though I did have a black White Sox shirt back then which I wore when I needed to impress the ladies. Worked every time. Nah, I'm just kidding. But I thought I looked cool, at least. I think I've even posted an awkward-age photo of me wearing it in an older post but I don't think I'll dig it out this time.

Some nightmare fuel on the back with a demonic clown playing guitar. Yikes! But seriously, I wonder if Bo kept up practicing guitar? Talented guy like that could do damn near anything he set his mind to, so I bet he could learn to really shred if he worked at it.

Anyways, now time for the randomness.

Isn't this a cool painting? Looks like a fun night at the Sugar Shack.

Speaking of sugar, I'm a dessert guy. I've got a sweet tooth and the curiosity to hunt for new dessert ideas to blow my mind. One I found that I will highly recommend is eating chocolate pudding not with a spoon but with nutty buddies. Oh man, that's heaven!

Another good one: sandwich of butterscotch pudding between a couple snickerdoodles, with fresh strawberries on the side. Very nice!

What the hell is this? I think it's a Twinkie dipped in the last of the butterscotch pudding with some strawberries thrown in for good measure. Yeah, this was fine. But let's be honest, these 3 desserts I've shown here are in descending order and this was the least best.

Shadow box tribute to my amazing pup Annie Lou who left us last year. Features a dual auto and some game-used memorabilia (collar and her favorite toy). Turned out pretty well.

The wild bunnies who've been enjoying free reign of our backyard in the months since Annie's passing have been a godsend to us, providing the cuteness needed to help keep our hearts from turning to dust given the events of 2020. But the backyard has a new ruler on the horizon, with Dog #3 less than a week away from joining our household. Pretty excited about it. Stay tuned.

Ladybugs are cool too. Snapped this nice close-up a week or so back.

This baby ladybug was found inside on the wall of my wife's home office, but I successfully rehomed it to the overgrown garden. Seemed to be pretty happy to have leaves to crawl around on instead of a boring wall.

No luck on the TTM request I sent to Mark McGwire a couple springs ago, but here's a version of it with a facsimile auto. Maybe someday!

Here's a McGwire mashup ("bash up") I made in photoshop (this is not a real photo). 1987 Topps meets 1991 Fleer Pro Visions for a Project 2020-style "art card".
I thought this was a fun one! Would love to see Topps and Panini (or Upper Deck) come together to offer a special card or set of cards along these lines with proceeds going to charity... covid, BLM, or something. But that's just me pie-in-the-skying over here on my computer relaxing at the end of a stressful Q2 at work.

And here's a dumb gif I made of Bert Blyleven's 1975 Topps card. LOL

Can't remember if I shared this here yet or not, but here's another dumb thing I made for Twitter recently.. brings us back to Bo, tying up the post nicely. It's a 3-way mashup of cards: 1971 Topps Nolan Ryan, 1986 Topps Traded Bo Jackson, and 1990 Classic "Nolan Knows Bo".. all in one crazy image.

That's it for this ignorable shitpost. See ya next time!

Sunday, June 28, 2020

McCutchen McCustoms

There's a high-swagger Andrew McCutchen photo variation short-print in the recently released 2020 Topps Series 2 that's been creating a buzz in the hobby.

I thought I'd spend some of my Sunday having fun creating a few customs from that same moment.

1980 Topps seemed like an obvious choice, being a special year for Phillies phans.

How about an '81 Fleer card.

Funky! All these background photos are the skyline of Philadelphia, by the way.

The grand finale is this 1972 Topps gif. That's what I'm talkin' about! Makes you wanna strut around listening to some James Brown or something.

Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, June 26, 2020

Mike Squires appreciation post (Post for Johngy)

There's a popular blogger named Johngy who has been around a long time and pops up in comments on other blogs sometimes. He's never commented on my blog, though, and it's one of my life goals to have him do so. So here's a desperate attempt to get his attention. If you are Johngy, please comment on this post. If you are not Johngy, please find him and ask him to comment on this post. There will be a baseball-sized hole in my soul until this happens.

Johngy is a big fan of relatively obscure White Sox player Mike Squires, so I made a bunch of customs for Mr. Squires, hoping to create a blip on Johngy's radar.

Despite not having the typical power associated with a first baseman, Squires was a valuable member of the White Sox during their Tony La Russa era in the late 70s and early 80s. He won a Golden Glove in 1981.

On May 4, 1980, Squires became the first left-handed-throwing catcher in Major League Baseball since Dale Long in 1958 when he was shifted from first base in the ninth inning of an 11–1 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers. And he later became the first left-handed-throwing third baseman in at least 50 years on August 23, 1983 when he entered the game for Vance Law in the bottom of the eighth inning in a 10–2 loss to the Royals. Chicago would go on to win the AL West that year.

Midriff alert! Something you don't see on cards often.

Nod to teammate Ralph Garr?

Guy on deck has an impressive bubble going. Or is that a fouled off baseball?

Squires was a Toronto Blue Jays coach from 1989 to 1991. Later went on to be a scout for the Reds.

What do you think, Johngy?!? Please comment below!

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Refractory Period

Just a few refractors I've picked up recently.

Derek Jeter is a big name to cross off my 2004 Chrome Black setbuild. This one happens to be graded. Dings here are centering and surface. Centering is fine on the front (a little off on the back) and while I don't see any problems with the surface, I get it. In fact I also won a Mariano Rivera from this set (ungraded) just a day or so later, but it had a deep scratch on it so I returned it.

But here's another Hall of Fame shortstop in Barry Larkin. Weird for me to see him in what I think of as a "modern set", but yep his last year on the field was 2004.

And a rookie auto I needed (thanks to rookie autographs [/25] being included in the black parallel set). I guess technically Nic Ungs is also a Hall of Famer, being inducted into the Northern Iowa Athletics Hall of Fame in 2015. He never made the bigs, but had a solid professional career, 2001-2011, putting up an 84-69 record with a 3.79 ERA.

2004 Topps Retired Darrell Evans refractor auto! I already had this one in my setbuild, but it popped up with a solid Buy-It-Now and I jumped on it. Hey, he's a guy I collect, so I'm cool with it being the new crown jewel in my little Darrell Evans PC (while still having another copy in my 2004 Retired auto set). When he eventually gets into the Hall of Fame, his cards will all go up.

Snagged this Joey Votto for my 2011 Topps parallel frankenset recently. Reds players probably look best in red or blue parallels, but this orange one still looks pretty good.

Here's a red one! As most folks who've gone after a Chrome rainbow can tell you, those /5 red parallels can be real doozies. So I was excited to see this one pop up of Casey Craig with a low opening bid. A guy who went to my high school, he hit .285 for his minor league career, but topped out at AA. Still though, very happy to add this to the Guys From Granite collection. I wonder if the superfractor will ever pop up for sale (again?).. If so, I'd probably try to snag it.

Ok, that's enough refraction for today. Thanks for reading!

Saturday, June 20, 2020

Incomin' cardboard to welcome the summer

Happy Summer Solstice.. the longest day of the year. I'll take some of that elongated time to get caught up thanking the kind folks who've mailed me cards in the past week or two.

This wonderful quartet of loved vintage stars leads off a trade with reader Michael Y. down the road from me in Ashland, OR. Been wanting a Sparky Anderson rookie for a long time, and the other 3 are pretty damn cool too!

Some big names for my 1974 Topps setbuild!

More sweet 70s needs/upgrades.

And a pair of nice cards on the modern side, with a Didi RC auto and a Thome Sportscasters numbered out of 30 copies.. love those things!

Thanks for the great first trade, Michael! Here's to many more in the future.

-    -  -- ---o

File this one under "random acts of kindness" as TCDB user "Shawn's Doubles" proposed a "trade" offering to send me this Ghostbusters 2 card from my wantlist for free. Hells yeah, brother!

Shawn seemed relieved to get it out of his house. I hope the card isn't... haunted?!

I've still got a dozen more needs to finish this one off, so please check out my wantlist if you've got some of these lying around.

-     -    - -  - ---0

Bo from Baseball Cards Come to Life surprised me with a fat PWE. Love adding more Black Gold cards I need.

Larry Walker in the house.

Some dudes I enjoyed watching when they played for San Diego.

Great stuff!

Thank you, Bo! I need to pack up a return to you soon.

-    - - ---o

Alex from Chavez Ravining started a "trade stack" on this blog, and I ended up claiming the first one on the strength of this lot of gold Ginters. I figured I collect most of these guys (just not Pettitte or Sosa), so it was good bang for my buck.

And if the gold Ginters wasn't enough, these cards were already on the trade stack. Most of these will find a home in my collection, so right on!

We each boosted up our sides with additional cards and Alex hooked me up with some awesome stuff. The Jose Ramirez is a cloth parallel.

Thanks, Alex! Hopefully the cards I sent have arrived safe (if not, let me know, because it's been a week or so.)

- --- - -o

Last package (oops, I mean "huge PWE"!) to show off today comes from Nick at the Dime Boxes Blog. I called dibs on this clear Beltre from one of Nick's free-card events.

Along for the ride were a few other cards he had set aside for me, hitting me back for the few cards I sent him last time. Here we've got a pair of OPC cards of guys I collect, plus a nice lot of Hoyts.

That's a strong mix of Padres.

Closing out with an impressive pair of vintage oddballs of Padres legends. Is that Jerry Coleman a real 1952 Berk Ross Hit Parade of Champions card?! Wow, that might be the nicest card I've gotten in a blind trade in quite a while! And I love the '77 cloth Winfield a lot, too. I should note that it's the "One Star at Back Bottom" variation, which seems to be more scarce than the "Two Star" version. So that's pretty cool.

Thanks as always, Nick! Always look forward to getting cards from you. My collection is greater for having known you!

Thanks again to everybody who sent me cards, and thanks to you for reading. Have a great summer

Thursday, June 18, 2020

Howard Hughes PC

In these days of being extra careful not to catch a nasty disease, Howard Hughes' later antics of "meticulous hand-washing" and "social distancing" aren't looking quite so crazy in hindsight. LOL. He wouldn't have missed a beat here in 2020!

Howard Hughes is an interest of mine thanks to being a link to connect with my late grandfather, who-- as a young amateur pilot himself decades ago-- admired Hughes' aviation feats and innovation. Before succumbing to mental issues, Hughes was one of the most famous, rich people in the world, known for his fast planes and titillating films.

My grampa was born on this day 105 years ago, so I planned this post as a little birthday celebration of showing off my Howard Hughes PC.

Let's kick off with a fresh-off-the-presses custom nine-card set I just put together.

We'll take a closer look at each card in a second, but here's how the set presents in a page. I like it! As you can see, I mostly wanted an excuse to make cards out of neat old movie posters that caught my eye.

Hell's Angels was probably his biggest hit film. I haven't seen it. Actually, don't think I've seen any of the movies Howard put out.. but I'll look to rectify that soon. Regardless, pretty cool looking artwork.

Another fun, if somewhat naughty one.

I wrote the backs, mostly paraphrasing/plagiarizing Wikipedia (Man, I wish Wikipedia was a thing back when I was in school! Writing reports would have been so much easier!). If you spot any typos, please keep them to yourself because I don't want to have to re-print anything. lol

This one might be my favorite! Love that image of rocketeers shooting over the Statue of Liberty or whatever. Looks really neat.

TIME Magazine cover deserved a card. I printed 2 copies of the set, by the way, with one currently paged and the other sleeved.

Jet Pilot was a flop of a film, but I liked the John Wayne poster.

I've seen the Al Pacino Scarface, but still need to watch the original sometime.

A nice photo of the man inside the Spruce Goose and a quick bio on the back. I often forget he and I share a birthday.. another decent excuse to collect his cards.

Then the 9th card wraps up his enduring legacy.

And so there's that! For the record, my grandfather was a devout Catholic and hopelessly devoted to my grandmother all his life, in contrast to Howard Hughes who was known as a womanizer and wasn't afraid to bend the rules to get what he wanted. Not sure if Grampa was a fan of Howard's films, but he was probably really just interested in the aviation scenes, if so. I never had the chance to talk to him about Hughes, as far as I remember, but what spurred on this "player collection" of mine is when we found this among his possessions after he'd passed...

My grandfather would have been about 23 years old when he got this program signed at a Chicago appearance by Hughes and his flight crew circa 1938. Probably the crown jewel of all my collectibles, especially given the personal connection.. but even if not, a Howard Hughes autograph that's confidently legit is something special.

I talked about this item more back in a 2015 post, so I won't rehash it too much now.

I've already got an idea for a "Series 2" of my Howard Hughes Collection custom set (a second page, that is), which I envision will include a card-sized reprint of this autographed program, plus individual cards for each person who signed it. (And I guess I'll fill up the rest of the 9 slots with more movie poster art or whatever grabs me.) But that's a project for another day.

Now onto some other stuff.

Rookie card! 1936 Goudey History of Aviation (R65) #1 Howard Hughes. Might be a stretch calling this a "card" as it's bigger than a CD cover and about as thick as a magazine page. But still very cool.

He's got another card in this same set, which I also picked up not too long after the other one..

Cool piece of vintage aviation art.

Unlike his other "playing days" cards, this 1939 Churchman's Kings of Speed tobacco card is quite affordable. Ran me just $5.46 delivered in a PWE.

According to the TCDB, I'm left with just one vintage whale to track down to complete my career-era Howard Hughes card collection...

1936 Heinz Famous Aviators 1st Series #7 Howard Hughes
Really nice looking old card. I hope to track one down someday. Other highlights from this set include Charles Lindbergh and Amelia Earhart. These 3 big names can get a bit pricey, but looks like the less familiar names in the 25-card set are readily available on eBay, so that's a good sign. I'll just have to have some patience.

The last card I've got to show off today is an ugly mother. It's a "relic" card featuring a clipping from a vintage newspaper article about Hughes. Really a poorly designed card covering up much of his face, but whatever.. wasn't too expensive. It allows me to be able to say I've got a Howard Hughes trifecta (using a loose definition).. owning his rookie card, an autograph, and a relic card. Winging Atlantic, alright.

I also have a few cards in my COMC inventory that I'll be requesting shipment on one of these days once COMC starts having more staff in the office and gets orders shipped out without the huge delays they're working with currently.

These pending PC additions include:
1985 LIFE Remembers #81
1991 Face to Face: The Famous Celebrity Guessing Game Cards #243 (gold)
1991 Face to Face: The Famous Celebrity Guessing Game Cards (purple)
1994-2001 Grolier Story of America #22-3
1995 Anngar International Who's Who? Game Cards

So eventually I'll have to do a follow-up post to this one with those cards plus the "series 2" custom set once I make that. Not sure if that'll be a year from today or sooner.. but someday!

I've also got his card in the 2002 Topps American Pie set, #106, but other than these, I'd be interested in any Howard Hughes cards/memorabilia I don't have.

Thanks for reading! Happy Birthday to my grampa up in heaven, and happy wedding anniversary to my wife and I. Six years today.. not too shabby.
See you next time.