Monday, September 22, 2014

Shoebox Buffet

On Saturday, I walked around the flea market and picked up some cards that included this shoebox full of randomness.  It was filled with a little bit of everything and kind of reminded me of a trip through a casino buffet.


I figured I'd kick things off with something light.  You know... the cardboard equivalent to a salad:


After that... it's time to try something new.   Something you wouldn't typically order when you go out to eat.  Let's see... how about some Dr. Who CCG's and a pair of Star Trek sets:


Okay... win some, lose some.  That's what happens when you experiment at the buffet.  Time to get back on track with some of your favorites.  Personally that means mashed potatoes and gravy with some corn on the cob.  Cardboard translation... inserts and oddballs:


And you can't have mashed potatoes without a few slices of turkey:


The idea of football coaches having rookie cards is like having dried out turkey at a buffet.  Let's get to the good stuff.

The main course.  The main reason you decided to go to that specific buffet.  Sometimes it's the prime rib.  Other times it's the barbecue ribs.  In this particular situation... it was the stack of 1992 Skybox Marvel Universe cards.


This shoebox contained six cards for my Series 3 set...


And it made this entire meal... I mean shoebox... super satisfying.

The only thing left is a little dessert:


Two hearty servings of Pamela Anderson.  And if Barbed Wire trading cards aren't your thing... how about comic book artist trading cards that include Todd McFarlane going topless:


Oh no.  I think I just threw up a little.  Sorta reminds me of the first time I laid eyes on this:

(borrowed from Google... this card wasn't in the box)

Okay... it's official.  I'm stuffed.  It was fun sifting through this stuff.  But just like when I go to the casino buffets... I always leave feeling a little bloated.  Time to figure out how to get rid of five hundred 1991 Pro Set football cards that even my students don't want.

Happy Monday and sayonara!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Flea Market Finds #71: Quarter Bin Vintage + Blonde Ambition

When:  Saturday, September 20th
Where:  Branham Flea Market
What:  Sports Cards and Laser Discs
How much?:  $18

When I woke up yesterday, I almost rolled over and went back to sleep.  Thankfully, I didn't.  This school year has been a little crazier than usual, so I figured the fresh air would do me some good.  It did.

My friend and I walked around the small high school flea market and while she looked for cookbooks, I looked for cardboard.  There's always a fair share of sports cards at this flea market, however with only $40 in my pocket and two card shows coming up next weekend... I knew I wasn't buying anything unless:

A.  It was cheap.
B.  It was something I really, really wanted.

Purchase #1:  Quarter Bin Bonanza $4


I'm not sure if you did this, but when I first started collecting cards in the early 80's... I used an old shoe box and recipe dividers to store my cards.  About halfway through the flea market, I stumbled upon a woman who had a similar setup.  She had sorted her cards alphabetically by teams and thrown the cards in the box without any penny sleeves or protection.

I could tell by the color of the card sides that these weren't your everyday, run of the mill early 90's Donruss and Fleer junk wax.  Before I even reached for the stack of A's, I asked the lady what she was selling the singles for.  As soon as she said 4 for a dollar, I knew it was worth it for me to look, so I dove in.

I immediately discovered the 75T Fingers and Hunter, which got me excited.  Unfortunately there wasn't much to get excited about from the Angels to the Mets.  The lone card I pulled from the Angels, Astros, Blue Jays, Braves, Brewers, Cardinals, Cubs, Dodgers, Giants, Indians, Mariners, and Mets was a 75T Garvey.


But as soon as I hit the Orioles... things began to flow and I began pulling cards left and right.  When the dust settled, I had extracted sixteen cards from her box.  They weren't in the best condition, but that's okay... because I enjoy collecting cards with a little character.

Best of all, I had a great time talking to the vendor about sports and collecting.  We covered everything from Rowland Office to O.J. Simpson.

Does it get any better than hanging out a flea market and talkin' cardboard?


Purchase #2:  Madonna Laser Discs $1


I continued to shop with the "Quarter Bin" lady when I noticed that she had a bunch of sealed laser discs.  They took me straight back into the 80's.

One of my buddies in elementary school had a laser disc player and I was totally jealous of him.  The lady had a bunch of Disney movies, but the two that caught my eye were these Madonna concerts.

I've been a fan of her since the days of Borderline and Into the Groove.  It's just a shame that I have no way of ever watching them, but they're cool nonetheless.


Purchase #3:  1974 Topps #250 Willie McCovey $8


I have wanted to build this variation team set for several years and now that I own the McCovey... it's time to get to work.

This card has been sitting in my friend's display case for a few months now, so I finally pulled the trigger and bought it.  I know I didn't secure it for $5 like Marcus...all the way to the backstop, but I grew tired of waiting and figured $8 was a fair price for the condition.


Purchase #4:  Shoe Box Smorgasbord $5


There aren't any vintage Mickey Mantles or Tony Gwynn autographs in this box.  But there were a few cards that caught my attention.  Unfortunately... this post is starting to drag on, so wrap things up and write about the five dollar mystery box either tomorrow or Tuesday.

In the meantime, let's talk Madonna.

Are you a fan?  Favorite song?

Happy Sunday and sayonara!

Friday, September 19, 2014

I Overpaid & I Liked It

Values in our hobby typically follow the whole "supply" vs. "demand" concept.  Simply put... "overproduction" tends to kill values.

Usually that's not a good thing from my point of view, but today I'm turning things around.  Let's call it "Flip the Script Friday".  Today I want to share an amazing card that features an on-card autograph of a hall of famer that can be purchased for less than $20.

Back in 1995, Upper Deck inserted redemption cards into their Series Two packs.  There were five players available:  Willie Mays, Frank Robinson, Roger Clemens, Raul Mondesi, and Mr. October himself... Reggie Jackson.


Take two seconds and just stare at this masterpiece.  Great photo.  Simple design.  Beautiful signature.  Baseball legend.  Can you ask for anything more?

I picked mine up a while back for $20 to $30 and thought I was robbing the guy.  This morning I checked completed eBay auctions for the same card and discovered this card now sells for a fraction of that price.  One closed eleven days ago for $8.50 (+ $2 shipping).  That's insane!  And depending on your point of view, it could be really awesome or really depressing.

Being the bargain hunter that I am... I normally would be frustrated that I overpaid for my copy.  But I just can't help feel excited that collectors who are willing to be patient... now have the opportunity to pick up a signature of one of the greatest players in World Series history for less than $20.

Happy Friday and sayonara!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

I've Got Beaver Fever!

If you've ever checked out my website, then you probably know the spectrum of collectibles I hoard is vast and unpredictable.

Sure the heart of my collection is focused on sports cards.  But for the past thirty-something years, I've collected a variety of other things ranging from video games to action figures to comic books to LP's.  Trust me... I know I have issues.

Thankfully I have learned to control my urges... and for the most part, I've stopped buying ever good deal I stumble across at the flea market, card shows, and on eBay.

However... every now and then, I relapse and buy something completely random and not necessarily a necessity.

Introducing my collection of Leave it to Beaver baseballs:


Take a few seconds to laugh it out.  Need more time?  Okay.  Are you finished?  Now you're just being hurtful.  I know this isn't your ordinary collectible.


But that's exactly why I bid on this eBay auction when I stumbled across it.  Even though the show ended its run nine years before I was born, I watched the show religiously during my childhood through syndication.  Heck... I've even started watching the whole series over again on Netflix.


Unfortunately the autographs are slowly disappearing due to the ink and ball selection.  They were signed in the mid 90's for a Leave it to Beaver Fan Club member on cheap, pleather balls.   The good news is that I paid less than $6 per ball (shipped), so it isn't like I broke the bank.

The balls are proudly displayed in my office next to my original Rubik's Cube and Taco Bell chihuahua plush.

Anyone else have Beaver Fever?

C'mon guys.  Keep the comments rated PG.  There might be kids reading this blog.

Happy Hump Day and sayonara!

Monday, September 15, 2014

I Love the 80's #12: Kenner Cards

Kenner Starting Lineups figures are pretty cool.  But Kenner Starting Lineup cards are even cooler.  I know that there are a handful of my cardboard collecting brethren out there who enjoy their fair share of oddballs.

Okay.  So maybe they're not as cool looking as Kellogg's 3D cards.  And sure they don't have the vintage smell of Hostess panels from the 70's.  But c'mon.  These guys are like the Babe Ruth and Ted Williams of oddball sets... they're in a league of their own.

But that doesn't mean there aren't other high quality oddball sets out there for collectors to pursue.  One of my favorites is the 1988 Kenner SLU cards:


It features a simple, good looking design that includes the player's name, player's jersey number, and team logo on the front.  I'm a huge fan of the bright red border that wraps around three-fourths of the card.  I just wish they would have added the player's position somewhere on the front.


The backs feature your standard player information, career statistics, and a facsimile of the player's autograph.  And thankfully it also includes the player's fielding position.


Unfortunately these cards are highly condition sensitive.  These cards were distributed in carded bubble packages, which contained one figure and one card which were distributed in toy sections all around the country.


I've opened up my fair share of these figures and most of the time the cards weren't in mint condition.  They're prone to chipping and can sometimes come out with dinged edges and corners.


But if you're able to overlook condition, you can find most of these cards for $2 or less.  COMC has a handful of these for under a buck.  I've never seen them myself... but I've even heard of people find these in quarter bins and dime boxes.


Back in 1988, some of the smaller name players in the set were distributed regionally.  This made it sorta difficult for people on the West Coast to grab an Ellis Burks.  On the flip side... an Oakland A's fan living in New York might have a hard time finding a Carney Lansford figure.


But thanks to the internet, finding singles for this set are easier than ever.  As of right now, I currently have twelve of the one hundred twenty-four cards in the set.  I sort of feel this is going to be a lifelong project, but it should be a lot of fun to build.

So what do you think?

Sensational?  So-so?  Or shameful?

Anyone else out there collect these?  Or better yet... have some of these available for trade?

Happy Monday and sayonara!