Friday, May 18, 2018

From one Collector to another

A couple of months ago, Chris (aka The Collector), attended a card show after having not done so in some obscene amount of years. While there, he picked up a few things for some of us other bloggers, and I was fortunate enough to be one of said other bloggers, and a little over a week later I had a loaded PWE in my mailbox to prove it.

The first card out of the package was a pretty good one, as not only did I need it for my set, but it also ended up being -- unbeknownst to me -- my first card of Manny Jimenez... which is kind of surprising, because for someone who really only had one good season, he sure has a lot of cards. Also, I think this '63 is the only one of his cards that isn't a high number.

I haven't been adding too much to my '69 set as of late, so it was really nice of Chris to help move things along.

Believe it or not, that Willie Horton is one of my favorite cards in the set! Were I to have had one of those "most desired" lists on the side of the blog, he most definitely would've been on there. I can't really explain why it is that I like the card so much, I just do... and now I can remove him from that non-existent "most desired" list.

I always enjoy getting "new" cards of Ray Sadecki, if only because his 1961 card was one of the first vintage baseball cards that I ever got.

The PWE wasn't all vintage, Chris also included a bunch of 2011 Topps Kimball Champions as well.

These eight cards more than doubled what I had previously had.

Bryce Harper seems to be a guy that fans either really love, or really hate. I've only seen him play maybe a handful of times, so I don't really have much of an opinion about him one way or the other, but I am certainly glad to be able to cross off another needed card from the 2017 Archives checklist.

Thanks again for the cards, Chris! My apologies for taking so long to publically acknowledge them, things still aren't going so great, so I'm getting a little behind with the blog posts, and this just happened to be one of them.

Oh, and I almost forgot, Chris has himself a contest going on. The contest is an conjunction with his much praised series of Sports Card Tour posts, and will be running through most of the summer. I don't what the record is for the longest running contest, but this has got to be up there. Some of the prizes were revealed a couple posts after the linked entry post, and it appears that there is going to be plenty of good stuff to potentially be had, so if you haven't already done so, you might want to go and get yourself entered while there's still time to do so.


Thanks for taking a moment to look at my page.

Friday, May 11, 2018

Can you help identify these signatures?

My mom bought me a couple of signed baseball's at a thrift store a couple of weeks ago. According to her, they were priced so low, that they were practically free -- so even though she knows that autographed memorabilia isn't something that I normally collect -- she went ahead and bought them anyway.

So now I have a pair of signed balls (tee-hee), which is what it is, but there is one slight problem... I can't identify/read the signatures! So, this is me asking for some assistance in doing so.

 The first signature is clearly Juan somebody, but after that... I got nothing.

 This should narrow it down a bit.

 I can't imagine that the model number will help it all, but you never know.

And the second ball:

I have a pretty good guess as to what this one says, but I don't want to influence anyone else's opinion by revealing it... especially if I'm wrong. This was a much used ball, so much so, that all the other markings have been worn off. Since it was with the other one, it may be another Florida State League ball, but then again, who really knows.

I'm not expecting too much here, but any help would be greatly appreciated.


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Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Tales from the Thrift Store vol.5

After having not gone to a single thrift store during the month of April, I was jonesing, and of course the only way to cure that... is by going to a thrift store!

Technically speaking, Serenity Thrift, is the closest second hand store to me, the only problem is... I tend to forget that it's there, mostly because I usually only go in that direction when I'm going to Nashville, and that's something that I don't do too terribly often.

This place also doesn't normally have a lot for me, so that probably doesn't help either... as far as the remembering that it's there goes. That being said, I didn't walk away empty handed when I took a trip to the store just a couple of days ago.

It's probably been over a year since the last time I went to this thrift store, in that time they seem to have made some changes (and not for the better), namely that there is a lot more clothes, and a lot less actual stuff.

One thing that was really different was that they had obviously received a huge donation of records, because there had to be at least 200-300 there, and there hadn't ever been any in my previous visits.

So the good news was, there was a lot of records to look through. The bad news, the majority of them were in pretty sad shape (deep scratches, warped, etc.). They were only 25 cents each though, so it was still worth the effort to try and find anything that wasn't all funked up.

Most of the stuff too, wasn't my kind of music (Dolly Parton, Engelbert Humperdinck, Oak Ridge Boys, and so forth), but I did manage to find a few things that didn't look like they had been used to sharpen knives and then stored out in a hot shed.

I had never heard of the kid's show, Pixanne (it aired in Philadelphia from 1960-69, and then nationally for another seven years), but it looked like a fun album... so I bought it!



I picked up the two Mario Lanza albums for my mom. I do like some of his stuff, but not enough to be buying anything of his for myself.

You had to know that there was going to be a couple of videos in this post, right? The selection wasn't very good, but I still managed to find two that were of interest.

I'm not really fan of Doris Day, but I could watch David Niven read a phonebook, so...


Here's a bit of a rarity for me, as it marks the first time that I've ever come across (in the wild) anything pertaining to The Ghost Busters, or in this case, it's later animated incarnation, Ghostbusters. Now if I could just find some of the toys!


I already have Kingdom of the Spiders on video, but for $1.99, I might as well get an upgrade. A lot of people consider this movie to be rather cheesy, I am not one of those people! The last shot of the film is, in my opinion, one of the more eerie/haunting images that you'll ever see... especially when watched in context.

Bonus content:

There is a Dollar Tree next to the thrift store, so of course I had to go in there as well. This isn't favorite Dollar Tree, but it is the only one that I know of around here that has cards and DVD's. None of the cards were of interest to me, but I did find this awesome sounding documentary for, you guessed it, a dollar!

Over a month was way too long to have not gone to a thrift store, hopefully for my own mental well being, I can try to remember to not do that again!


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Sunday, May 6, 2018

A good buy

I don't know if anyone else ever does this or not, but sometimes when I'm searching eBay... and I happen upon something that I already own... and it's something that could be considered somewhat hard to find... and that something seems to be getting a lot of bids, I'll go ahead and put it in my watch list just to see what the final price ends up being. I mention this because two weeks ago just happened to be one of those times.

Before continuing, I'm going to take a quick trip back in time. It was right around three years ago (late as usual) that I discovered Panini's Golden Age, and completely fell in love with the brand. I can't remember now how it is that I came to find out about the sets, but almost immediately after doing so, I ordered a couple of boxes from Steel City Collectibles... and if I hadn't been completely hooked before, I definitely was after opening those boxes.

After the boxes had been opened, I started spending a lot of time searching the usual haunts in my attempt to find the best deals on cards -- autographs in particular -- from the sets that I didn't have... and Sportlots was of course one of those usual haunts.

The site had a pretty good selection, most likely because the sets were still somewhat new at the time. If I remember correctly, a lot of the prices were a bit on the high side... apparently that part hasn't changed too much in the last three years. There were two cheap autographs that really stood out though, both of which were being offered by the same seller.

The cheapest of those two autos, and the one that's the subject of this post, is the poorly scanned Carl Bernstein shown above. At the time, I couldn't find any sales records on eBay (or anywhere else), which told me that it might not be one of the more common autos in the set, so since you're seeing it, and I'm talking about it, you've probably already figured out that I ended up buying it (along with the other auto that the seller had).

Fast forwarding back to the present, or rather to two weeks ago when I was doing my usual weekly search for Golden Age on eBay, and I just happened to see the first Carl Bernstein auto come up since I had bought mine three years ago. The card seemed to be getting some attention, so into the watch list it went, and not because I have any intentions of selling it mind you, sometimes I just like to know what I have.

I should probably point out too, that when I say I haven't seen another one in the last three years, that's referring to auctions, as I rarely look for stuff in people's stores. So I'm sure a few others have come up as BIN's, but I'm pretty sure that this was the first one to come up for auction during this particular time period that I'm talking about.

After a couple of days, and many bids, the card ended up selling for $79, which might not seem like a lot to some of you, but three years ago when I bought mine, I only paid... $6! So in retrospect, that was a pretty good buy.

And even though it has nothing to do with this particular post, I know a few folks might be curious to know what was the other autograph that I had purchased from that seller, so here you go:

This was bought for $8, it routinely sells on eBay for anywhere between $35-$60, so I guess one could say that that was a pretty good purchase as well.

One other quick piece of info about these, is that even though the seller charged like $2.50 for shipping, both ended up being sent via PWE in just penny sleeves... with absolutely nothing else in the envelope to protect the cards. To say that I was annoyed at the time (and even still a little now) would be a massive understatement, and I definitely let seller know about it, who replied by asking me what the big deal was? Because they always shipped like that, and had never had any problems, which only ticked me off more. They did arrive unharmed (a minor miracle), but I still wasn't ever going to be buying from that seller again, and to this day, I still haven't.


Thanks for taking a moment to look at my page.

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Touched by an Angel

I have a couple of older trade/care package posts that I really should get to sooner than later, but I'm going to bump the PWE that arrived earlier this week to the head of the line, if only because, it was the first time in my 2 1/2 years of doing this blog that I had received a completely unexpected  package/PWE in the mail.

I know that for some of you out there, this might not seem like a big deal because you get them all the time, but as I said, I don't, so it is a big deal. Since I wasn't expecting anything from anyone, and I hadn't bought anything from anywhere, I initially thought that I had accidently received someone else's mail, that was until I turned over the envelope and saw my name as well as a familiar return address (my Secret Santa recipient)... which belonged to none other than, Trevor, from the Bump And Run Football Card Blog.

Other than the Secret Santa thing, Trevor and I have only had the most minimal of interaction, so that really made this PWE that much more surprising. There were ten cards in the envelope, and all ten of them were set needs, which is always a good thing.

My scanner does not like Golden Age (can you tell?), but try as it might, it still can't take anything away from this awesome 2014 Farrah Fawcett Newsmakers insert.

After these three, I am now only a couple of cards away from completing the 2014 base set... and I don't how it was even possible, but somehow this was the first time that I have seen the Northern Dancer card! It's a really attractive card too (especially in hand), I just can't get over the fact that I had never seen it anywhere before... crazy!


I'm still a ways away from completing the 2012 Cooperstown set (darn short prints!), but being able to knock five more off that needs list is pretty cool, plus I always enjoy getting new cards of Rabbit Maranville.

And last, but certainly not least, Trevor was able to remove another card from my 2017 Archives list. Is it terrible that I had no idea who Justin Bour was? Even though I can't recall the last time I watched a Marlins game, or even listened to a radio broadcast in which they were playing someone, it seems like I still should've known who he was... especially after looking up his numbers, which seem to be pretty solid. If I'm feeling bored someday, I might have to head on over to YouTube and check out a few of his highlights.

Thank you for the cards (and the nice note), Trevor! They were definitely a mood improver. And hopefully I can repay your thoughtfulness sometime soon... possibly in the form of an unexpected PWE.


Thanks for taking a moment to look at my page.

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Returning from a respite

After taking a couple of weeks off, I think I'm ready to try and start blogging on a regular basis again. I don't really feel any better than I did at the time of my last post, but if I wait too much longer to come back, I might end up not doing so.

Before getting started with this one, I just wanted to thank everyone for all the support that was given in my last post, it's really nice to know that the kind of people who would leave such comments are stopping by on a regular basis. And an extra special thank you needs to be sent out to Josh... he knows why :)

Okay, so everyone that read my last post knows that my monthly collecting budget has been substantially reduced, with that in mind, I thought it might be "fun" to see how I did during my first full month of said lower budget, so the following are all my non-essential purchases for the month of April:

My first purchase in April was this Jimmy Smith 2001 Playoff Absolute Memorabilia Ground Hoggs, which at $7.99, would end up being the most expensive item bought during the month.

Going into the month of April I had $3.10 in eBay bucks, the only problem was, they don't give it to you until the 4th (I think) and this card ended on the 1st or 2nd, so I couldn't use those bucks on this card... which was kind of annoying.

I'm still just as infatuated with this set as I was when I found my first one at a show last year. Since they show you the actual pair of shoes, part of the fun for me is trying to figure out which part of the shoe that the piece came from... I didn't have to do too much investigative work on this particular one. These don't come up very often, and when they do, they're often a bit pricey, so I haven't been able accumulate nearly as many as I would have liked.

My NFL knowledge from the mid 90's to the mid 2000's is pretty sparse as I didn't pay much attention to the pro game during that time period, so I wasn't familiar with Mr. Smith in the least. It looks like he had a pretty solid career, five Pro Bowls, led the NFL in receptions one year (1999), and still holds a number of Jacksonville team records.

I haven't ever talked about here on the blog, but I absolutely love the Nano Metalfigs toy line that debuted last June, so much so, that I've probably acquired at least half of the line so far. I haven't been able to find any from the most recent wave, but I did find this Penguin from the previous one.

They had already released an Adam West Batman and a Burt Ward Robin, so it was pretty cool of them to do a Burgess Meredith Penguin as well (there's a Caesar Romero Joker in the newest wave). At .98 cents, this was my cheapest purchase of the month.

Does anyone know how to play the violin? If so, can you cue up the sad music for this one? Right after it had ended, I mentioned on Twitter that I won this auction for the first three seasons of The Sopranos on VHS... for the paltry sum of $2.20 (free shipping)! Not only was the price great, but I was able to pay for it with this now accessible eBay bucks.

Unfortunately, after waiting a week, the seller decided to cancel the sell, which didn't surprise me too terribly much -- as I knew they were going to be losing money on the shipping -- but that doesn't make it any less sucky. It's not my fault that they decided to list a couple of seasons of a show on VHS for $2.20 w/ free shipping, I mean seriously, did they really think that there was going to be that much interest in an old show on an obsolete format?

I had only ever seen the first episode of the show, and that was only because way back when the pilot first aired, we had one of those free HBO weekend's going on, so I was really looking forward to seeing what I had missed out on... obviously now it's going to be a little longer before I can do that.

After "winning" The Sopranos auction, I had .90 cents left in eBay bucks, so I just went ahead bought this DVD of Darkness Falls. This is one of those movies that I've been hoping to come across in a thrift store for years now, and considering that's not out of print or particularly well liked by the general public (I think I might be the only person who genuinely likes it), it's been kind of weird that I haven't ever found in the wild. After the bucks, this one set me back $2.67.

Thinking that it might be of use to me, Oscar suggested that I try to find this book at a local library during a recent conversation. After reading all the positive reviews on Amazon, and Oscar's recommendation,  I just went ahead and bought a copy off of Abe Books for $3.92. I've been struggling to get through the current book that I'm on, but whenever I finally get done reading it, this one will be next in line.

The $2.99 DVD bin's at the various Walmart's that I've been to in the last couple of months seem to be better than they had been in awhile. I've already got both of these on VHS, but it was nice to be able to get a cheap upgrade.

Two Boss Hoggs... huzzah! And this time it was even a hall of famer!

There's a few more options than the Jimmy Smith as to where this piece could've come from on the shoe. Since I got $2.20 in eBay bucks refunded from the cancelled Sopranos, I was able to put that towards this purchase, which made the final out of pocket price just $3.07... which was pretty awesome, because I thought for sure that this one was going to get a lot more attention, apparently I was wrong, but this was one time where that was a good thing.

This seller had a Brett Favre that I was going to try and bid on, but it ended up going for $32.15, and since was kind of a boring part of the shoe, I just ended up not even bothering with it.

My last purchase occurred while grocery shopping at the Kroger (for those on the West Coast, it's like a lesser Fred Meyer,) on the last day of April. Another movie that I've never been able to find in the wild. Normally I won't pay this much for just standalone movie (i.e. no special features), but I really wanted it, so I bought it. Normally I show the synopsis on the back of any movies on the blog, I forgot to do so in this post, so...

My final total for the month ended up being $27.61, which definitely wasn't too bad, although it helps that I didn't go to any antique malls, card shows, thrift stores, etc.

I've sold a number of things in the last couple of weeks, so I do have some extra paper folding money to spend if I end up coming across something really great, it'll also come in handy if I do decide to go to the card show at the end of the month.


Thanks for taking a moment to look at my page.

Monday, April 16, 2018

Trying to stay positive

I don't really know how to start this one, so I'll just come right out and say that the oncoming depression that I've felt lurking in the shadows for the last couple of months -- which I had been doing a pretty good job of keeping at bay -- has finally caught up to me... hence the no new blog posts for over a week now.

I might've been able to hold it off for a little longer, but a few recent events have lowered my defenses, enabling the depression to set in.

Without going into any details, two weeks ago I got some bad news in regards to my finances, which will directly affect my monthly budget that I have for spending on hobby related things, namely collecting. While the prospect of now having about 50% less per month to spend on my hobbies was initially hard to take in, I did accept it within a couple of days, and was starting to come up with ways to get around these new limitations... but then last week I got another kick to the groin, when I found that this matter was going to be worse than I initially thought.

So now I'm looking at having less than 50% of what I normally have to spend each month on hobby related items, it will now likely be around 35% of what it has been for the last couple of years... and that's a pretty big decrease.

I hate to bemoan about this too much, as I know that other people, for one reason or another, have to reduce their monthly spending all the time... but for me it's going to be a very difficult adjustment, as collecting is really all that I have, I mean really, it's all that I am.

Since this problem will not be getting better anytime soon, I've already started looking for, and found, a number of things to sell in order to give me some extra spending money, which will help during these first few months, but after that, well... I guess I'll have to wait and see.

And if that wasn't bad enough, I got some more bad news yesterday. It's unrelated to the money issue, and it's suckiness shouldn't extend past this week, but it will make this entire week feel like it's going to take a month to get through. And I'm being especially vague about this thing, because it's something that I'm really not comfortable discussing here on the blog.

Oh, and apparently I'm in need of two root canals. I suspected that I might be in need of one, but not two! I do have dental insurance, so that will help with the financial part, but insurance is going to help alleviate the stress and anxiety that will be brought on from my fear of blood, pain, and dentists!

Because of this funk that I've been in, I also forgot all about a comic book show in Bowling Green that I had been looking forward to for the last couple of months, well technically I did remember it yesterday, which conveniently was... one day after the show was held. I really wanted to go to thin one too, as it's been the only one that I've found within a couple of hours drive of me, that had free admission, all the other one's that I have found cost $10-$20 to get in -- even if I wasn't in the midst of money woes -- I wouldn't pay that kind of sum just to get through the entrance. And of course one could say that there's always next year, but next year is an awfully long ways away.

So all in all, things have not been going well. I don't think I've done anything bad to anyone lately, so this must be some wicked old karma finally catching up to me.

I know that people don't necessarily like to read these kinds of posts, and I certainly don't like to write them, but I do feel slightly better having done so, if only because it at least lets everyone know why my blog posts have been, and might continue to be, somewhat sporadic.

On an unrelated note too, I just wanted to say that I was saddened to hear of Art Bell's passing the other day. I fell asleep to the sound of his voice for so many years, and I mean that as an absolute compliment. He truly was a pioneer, and I think that it's safe to say that they're won't ever be another one like him. I am very grateful to him for the many years of entertainment that provided, and I wish him all best on the rest of his journey.


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