Sunday, January 21, 2024

Iced Cards

We're still thawing out from an ice storm here in Portland. Other than 24 hours without internet and a few days without mail delivery, we've gotten by just fine... just cold and a little stir-crazy stuck with a high-energy dog. There are a lot of fallen trees and branches in the neighborhood from the high winds. A house just a block over ended up with a tree sticking out of their roof, apparently getting a little national attention via Reddit.

But yeah, once mail service resumed, I got some cool cards in the mail and so let's make a blog post.

Boom! Here's my first "big card" landed in 2024. Happy to check Albert Pujols off my 2004 Chrome black refractor chase.

Also recently acquired the Ivan Rodriguez. I've only got about 30 of these cards left to go. That'll be nice if I'm able to finish that project, hopefully in the next couple years or so.

The other refractor setbuilding I focus on these days: Topps All-Time Fan Favorite refractors. I finally scored my first of Ripken's three such cards.

Great looking Rod Carew card. The photo was used on the cover of Time magazine's July 18, 1977 issue.

image from Google

I'm not set-collecting ATFF autographs (thankfully for my wallet, the autos are not refractors in those sets), but coincidentally picked up this Garry Templeton auto from 2003 ATFF. He was one of my very first "PC guys" as a kid growing up in San Diego, and while I don't collect him that hard these days, I had been wanting to snag one of these Archives autographs for a while, and finally did so recently. Now I've got both of the Garry Templeton certified autographs Topps has released to date.

-  - - o

A couple posts ago, I talked about Zippy Zappy bequeathing me much of his non-personalized TTM returns from over the years. One personalized card had slipped through in that lot, and I was happy to return it. The generous guy he is, Kenny wanted to send over a PWE for my trouble.

A couple certified autos and a forever stamp, not bad. But the stars of the party were the lovely ladies.

Thanks again, Zippy!

Some wintery pics to close out the post. Thanks for stopping by. Stay warm, everybody.

Here's that house I mentioned at the top of the post. I hope everybody was ok.

Ruby loves walking in this weather even more than she normally loves walks, and she really loves walks. I guess it's the husky in her. She just loves being out in the cold.

Monday, January 8, 2024

A Completed Page of Wallet Cards

I'll nearly always "like" any social media post that pops up in my feed with the #walletcard hashtag. I love to see meaningful cards out there playing an active part in someone's life. 

I still think of myself as "the wallet card guy", but nearly a decade on, I realize I'm probably alone there and most people today don't make the association anymore. Sure guys were putting cards in their wallets since the tobacco card days, with the most famous example being Bob Costas doing so with a certain Mickey Mantle, but for what it's worth, the "wallet card craze" wasn't a thing in the modern hobby until my post on January 2, 2015, which took off further thanks to attention on social media and was really buzzing for a hot minute there. I had made it into a contest those first two or three years, sending out heavy-hitting cards as prizes to the Junior Junkie and Bo Rosny, but I don't try assume any "authority" over the concept anymore. 

But yeah, I still keep a card in my wallet and am happy to see other people doing so, too. 

It's now been 9 years for me having an annual wallet card. You know what that means: Completed page!

Looks great, fuzzy corners and all!

Tony Gwynn's 1987 Fleer was my co-pilot for 2023, and while it didn't get into a ton of adventures, it does have the distinction of being my first international wallet card, accompanying my wife and I to Greece this past September. I'll go ahead and post some photo "outtakes" that weren't good enough to be included in my big Trip to Greece post recapping the vacation, but are fine for this walletcard-centric post:

lol, I was trying to center the card.

Good times!

As for 2024, welp, I'm back with a 10th wallet card. I decided to stick with Mr. Padre, why not.

What the heck, guess I'm going for a second page!

That'll do it for today.
Are you carrying a wallet card these days?

Thursday, January 4, 2024

Zapped by the ghosts of a few hundred Forever stamps

Zippy Zappy is a guy who hit the cardblog scene around the same time as me so I kinda feel like I have a bond with him like we were in the same graduating class or something. I've always loved reading his blog, learning stuff and getting his unique perspective on the hobby. He's been super generous with me, shipping several packages of cards across the country from New York to Portland over the past decade. I try to hit him back so I don't feel too guilty about it, but he's got a narrow focus and makes a priority of keeping a tight collection, limiting my potential for return fire. Thankfully he seems cool with the imbalance.

In a recent post, Kenny was lamenting his lack of storage space and joked about trashing the impressive collection of TTM/IP autographs he built up and logged on his blog over the years. I wasn't sure how serious the threat was, but I let him know I'd be happy to be caretaker of the cards if they need it. I'm fortunate to have a "cardroom" to fill with my collection. And while that room is always very full/messy, things eased ever since I found a secret additional room in my house a couple years ago. (That's a whimsical way of saying I realized I had accessible attic space I could use to store my Junk Wax Era complete sets.) So sure, if a buddy of mine has meaningful cards they reluctantly feel they must part with, I'm happy to help. And from a less noble standpoint, hell yeah I'm always down for free cards, baby!! LOL

A big box arrived yesterday with Zippy's trademark return address shenanigans. Included was the above box with a hefty portion of his through-the-mail-or-in-person autograph collection that I'll be happy to look after, though his accompanying note said I could do whatever with the cards. I'll likely keep them intact for a little while, if not a long while, in case he decides he's ready for them back at some point. The personalized cards were taken out (except one "To Kenny" from Eric Young, Jr.), so hopefully those stayed with him, or will maybe end up with another collectors who goes by the name Kenny.

In the interest of getting this post out ASAP, I'm just showing a few highlights. The majority of the cards are 2012-2016 minor leaguers, so many never went on to become stars, but it's still a kick thumbing through them. Lots of "Oh, I remember that guy!" and "Who?" And sometimes you get a guy who beat the odds like Trea Turner or Aaron Nola. A few big names like Adrian Beltre and Joe Carter in there too.

I remember when Kenny took a go at building a signed set of 1979 Topps, though he didn't dig his heels in with that project for too long. Cool to see the occasional old Topps card of solid players of the past along with the modern cards in the box.

Certified autographs were in there too, some on redeemed redemptions. I don't follow basketball much, but JJ Redick is a pretty nice player to have an autograph of fall in my lap. Michael King just came to the Padres in the Juan Soto trade, so I'll be rooting for him to pitch well for my hometown team.

Star Wars Legos! Looks like a couple complete fighters here with instructions for me to piece together sometime. While I haven't gone hard with Lego as an adult, I loved playing with them as a kid and still have most of them. Lego Masters is a fun show, too.

Wall art and more toys. It was like a second Christmas going through this box. Fun stuff!

Let's close with some non-sport. That's a lot of that purple one! With the addition of these two Stranger Things commemorative patches, I've now got 4 of them. Man, that Megan Fox auto deserves a better photo.. hang on..

There we go! That's a very nice add for my minicollection of women on cardboard.

Thanks again so much, Zippy! If/when you get rooted somewhere with more storage space and start getting a sentimental longing for anything you've given me, please don't be shy to mention it and I'll be more than happy to return the kindness if I'm able.

Random Ruby. To Kenny.

Thanks for reading!