Tuesday, March 5, 2019

HHOF AUTOS - Two New And An Upgrade

When I started my hard-signed HHOF auto project a few years back, I knew that the element of 'trading only' would make this a fun challenge.  These days it's so easy to just click a few buttons and purchase your way to a collection or head to the store, bust a few boxes and walk away with a handful of cards.  But the art of the trade is something that is sorely lacking in this hobby.  It's hard these days though...most transactions happen online and there are few outlets available to make successful one-on-one transactions.

But I'm very fortunate to have a couple of shops in my city that run trade nights.  And while I tend to bring the same ol' stuff, there's always a chance that I will walk away with something new - without having to drop a ton of coin.  And I did just that last month.

Rod Gilbert
(Inducted in 1982)

A perfect addition to my collection.  Great card set, solid signature, and a guy that doesn't really command top dollar.  This was an easy one to trade for.

Obtaining this card has made me want to take a look at the variety of my cards.  I like that I have a good mixture of product types and that there are no real stretches of redundancy.

Let's keep that up.

Found some interesting info when I was researching Rod.  I had no idea that he broke his back just as he was being called up from junior to play with the Rangers.  Tripped over some debris thrown onto the ice and fell into the boards.  Doctors took a bone from his leg to bind three vertebras in his back.  And this was back in the 60's.  That's nuts.

As well, I noticed he was putting up a point-a-game stats right up until his abrupt retirement.  Seems he had a bit of a dispute with then GM John Ferguson.  Pretty much killed his career.

Sergei Fedorov
(Inducted in 2015)

Boy either my camera sucks or my computer monitor needs a reset.  This card looks blue - and it's not.  But let's look beyond my lack of proper editing on the pic.  Another offering that is unique to the collection.  Cool autograph.  Maybe could've been a bit better photo....but I'm not picky.  I managed to get rid of stuff I don't want for something I do.

Gotta say that's a win in my book.

It's so weird seeing guys inducted into the HOF that I followed from day one.  Makes me feel old.

The one thing this card makes me aware of (and you'll see it in my next offering) is that I'd like to consider getting the players in a jersey that best represents them.

Like this one.  When I hear the name Pat LaFontaine, I think New York Islanders.  I think epic long overtime.  To me he is linked to the Long Island jersey forever.  This card replaces the one I had in my collection for some time.

It's a nice card and all, good signature, great card design, but he's not Buffalo to me.

Just like Fedorov isn't a Duck.  I know I'll be upgrading that one down the road.  I can sense it now.

But for now, it's one step closer to the goal.


Current Collection - 80 HOF Autos

Monday, March 4, 2019

LINDEN CARD OF THE WEEK - It's Lethal

Well February was the longest short month ever.  Work pushed me to a near breaking point and at times I wasn't sure I'd survive.  But my project is over and done with and I'm currently enjoying a couple days or relaxation to recover.  Then....it's back at it.

So in the meantime, I thought I'd do a little catching up on things.  Posting on my blog, reading a book or two and finishing some side projects that have been on the plate for far too long.

My recent search for Linden cards produced an interesting result and so I figured I'd share.

I saw a triple jersey card up on eBay a couple weeks back, it had been there a couple times before, and I finally did a double take on it.

2003/04 Upper Deck MVP
#LL4 Lethal Lineups Triple Jersey  /50

This card is one of Trev's earlier relic cards and at the time was highly sought after by myself (and I'm sure all the other Linden collectors...not to mention the Naslund and Bertuzzi chasers).  Fifteen years later it still catches my eye.  I don't know what it is....maybe the player selection?  It certainly isn't a card that has that 'blow me away' type of design, but I like it.

Here's where the detective case begins.

This is my copy of the card.  I've had it for years.  Bought it who knows when (or where), put it in its toploader and stored it away.  But I must have some sort of photographic memory when it comes to this card because when I saw the numbered version pop up, I knew something was a miss.

Note: The scan of the first card and the photo of the second makes it appear that they are two different looking cards (parallels if you will).  They are not.  My camera was just being finicky.

I had always assumed that the cards from that release were unnumbered.  So I just went on my merry way and ignored anything that came after.  Well seeing this numbered offering pop up again finally had me asking questions.

It seems as though I've got a rare bird here.  Looks like all of the Lethal Lineups cards are indeed numbered.  So how did I land this one?  For once....I have no story.  I wish I did though.

Needless to say, I quickly contacted the owner of the numbered version (he too, a Linden collector) and made an easy purchase.  The card is on its way to me now.

Glad to cross this one off the list - which was already crossed off but shouldn't have been...adding another line to the master list but then crossing it off.  I think I killed two birds with one stone - somehow.  A lethal shot you could say.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

OUTSIDE THE BOX - Negro Leagues Centennial Team Postcard Set

One of the really exciting aspects of the card collecting hobby is the explosion of the online element. Don't get me wrong, I love the in-person component - and find it to be an essential part of collecting, but there are just so many different things that can be explored, discovered, chased....and bought online.

I have my "hobby favourites" when it comes to those people or collections that I can admire from a distance on social media.  Just a few of the names that come to mind are Tim Carroll and his cut up baseball cards, Ryan Cracknell and his fun, enthusiastic approach to collecting, Shane Katz and his awesome Topps Binder Project as well as his sweet oddball finds, and Graig Kreindler with his absolutely jaw-dropping baseball art.

Craig's work is tremendous.  The patience and time he takes to perfect his numerous works of art are truly mind boggling, the detail in some of the scenes are head shaking and the essence of the day and the spirit of the subject(s) is definitely captured.  I've been a big fan of his for years and hope to one day pull the trigger on an original piece.

In the meantime though, I've found a terrific slice of Graig Kreindler art to get me by.....and it also quenches my card collecting thirst.

What you see here are 34 postcards commemorating the Negro Leagues Centennial Team (1920-2020).  Each one a "study" of an iconic name in an important part of the baseball story.

The detail in these pieces are fantastic and the scans don't do them justice.

This is the box cover.  As you can see, the collection is limited to just 2,020 sets and I was thrilled to have landed one.

I had noticed a tweet sent out by Graig shortly before Christmas indicating that the Negro League Museum had been working with him to commission this set.  Pre-orders were underway and I raced to the website to get my place in line.

I noticed quickly that due to me living in Canada, my order was unable to be processed.  Once again, social media to the rescue.  Within moments of sending my query to the museum, Jay Caldwell responded and said he would look into things.  Long story short, my order was placed within the hour.

Leroy Robert "Satchel" Paige

When my package arrived shortly into the new year I was absolutely stoked with the quality of the set.  The postcards have a beautiful sheen to them and are perfectly cut.  The simple framing on the front just add the perfect amount of class to the cards.

Roy "Campy" Campanella

The backs have a great writeup about the player along with some personal information.  No stats though, but that's ok.......there's lots of room to type up a quick note, slap a stamp on it and mail away.

Joshua "Josh" Gibson

If I had the slimmest of beefs, it would be to have the cards printed on a canvas card stock (kind of like what Upper Deck does with the Series I & II Canvas cards).  That would've taken the things to the ultimate.  But make no mistake, these are literally stunning works of art.

James Thomas "Cool Papa" Bell

I'll admit, I still haven't really....REALLY spent the time to fully immerse myself in these cards.  I mean c'mon, just peer into those eyes for a moment.  What would be going through his mind?  What was his life like at that moment?  Where had he been and where was he going?

Mesmerizing.

Graig has put together arguably the greatest set of Negro League cards out there - period.  And yes, I've picked up other sets in the past, but these paintings are just a special notch above.

John Jordan "Buck" O'Neil, Jr.

The last pic I'll share is of one of my all-time favourite baseball players, the great Buck O'Neil.  Every time I hear his name or see his picture, I immediately think of the fantastic clips he provided in the iconic Ken Burns documentary series 'Baseball'.  He just had a genuine voice that I appreciated a great deal.  His storytelling ability is tops on my list.

One of the books on my 'to read' list this year is The Soul Of Baseball: A Road Trip Through Buck O'Neil's America.  I can only imagine the "pictures" that he will paint in my mind.

Thank you again Jay for your help in getting me this set and thank you Graig for producing some incredible pieces of art.  For those who are interested in picking up these postcards, I believe there are still some available from the Negro League Museum store.

Monday, January 28, 2019

LINDEN CARD(s) OF THE WEEK - Bought 'Em, Got 'Em, Where Am I With 'Em?

Well I can safely say that the start of 2019 has proved to be far more exciting from a hobby standpoint than most of my 2018.  I've already surpassed my blogpost amount from the previous campaign and I've picked up a few quality pieces for my growing projects.

The staple of them all though still remains my Trevor Linden collection.

I took some time over the holiday break to go through my Linden cards, do a little resorting, double check some lists and just enjoy the cards I've been chasing for over 20 years.  It really reinforced to me how much I enjoy this project and how I really feel like I've come into my own with how I approach this daunting task.  He's got a lot of cards on the wantlist, and a good chunk of them are both tough to find - and costly.  A patient approach while waiting for the right price is key.

Which brings me to my two latest acquisitions.  I'm on the fence with them.

2017/18 Leaf In The Game Used Superlative
#SP-TL1 Super Patch Blue  /4

The word that comes to mind is.....gallimaufry.  I believe Paul over at Card Boarded has used that word a few times.  This card has a lot going on.

First of all, the blue foil pops - a lot......and it looks awesome.  It really makes the card look crisp.  The patch is big - real big.......and I love the three colours with the stitching.  It's a solid, super, patch. But this is where the train derails a bit.  The jersey in the photo is one Trevor never wore (flying V) and I don't quite get why a Canucks jersey was used on a card with a Canadiens patch?  It really makes a colourful mess on the front of the card.

I didn't pull the trigger right away when I saw this piece, yeah it's rare (only four copies) but I just didn't feel "excited" to hit the purchase button.  I don't feel like I overpaid.....but I feel now that I could've held out longer and picked one up for less eventually.

Regardless, it's a nice enough card and I am excited to add it to the collection.  Just not "over the moon" excited.

Speaking of not "over the moon" excited.......

2017/18 Leaf
#193 1993-94 Buyback Signatures  /5

This base card buyback auto thing has now hit me a few times - and the novelty of it is growing tired.

Back in 2010, it was Panini offering up the Score Recollection Collection buyback autos.  Those were fun to snag.  A little pricey considering it was a penny base card with an auto and a serial number stamped on it.  In 2016, Upper Deck got into things with their Fleer Showcase 25th Anniversary Buyback autos.  Again, a nice idea, and well executed.  This time they were a little more common (25 copies) and so the chase....and find was fun.

This time around it's Leaf, and really it's not pushing any boundaries.  In fact, I feel like they've taken a bit of a step back by putting a sticker signature on the card.  It just doesn't have the personal connection that the others did.

Nonetheless, when they started to pop up online, I kept my eyes open.

The first few came and went......and came again, and again.  The prices were just too high - for me and many others it seemed.  Finally, this copy popped up (from a seller I've dealt with numerous times over the years) and while I thought the price was a little high, I thought it was more in the ballpark.  I made an offer and they accepted.

So I should feel excited right?  I got the card for the price I wanted to pay.....right?

Yeah, the "over the moon" feeling just wasn't there again.  Much like the Super Patch, this card is just....there.

Again, don't get me wrong, I love the fact I've added it to the collection.  I just don't feel like I've snagged a sweet deal or landed an amazing item.

Two solid pieces.....that's where I am with 'em.


Sunday, January 27, 2019

12 In 12 REDUX - Confessions Of A Baseball Card Addict

'12 in 12'.....it's been a long time since I've typed that.  For those who have followed this blog for a number of years know that I got back into reading and I set a goal of reading (and reviewing) one book each month.  I was pretty proud of completing that goal back in 2013.  It has been a number of seasons since I posted anything book-related here, but that doesn't mean I've stopped reading.  In fact, over the past couple of years I can safely say that I've finished more titles than ever before.  Last year I completed 18 books and this year I'm setting an even loftier goal of 25.

This morning, I finished book number two of 2019.

Confessions of a Baseball Card Addict
by Tanner Jones

As a heavy-duty player collector now for a good two decades, a blogger for over 10 years and a person who just tremendously enjoys this hobby for a number of reasons, I've known the name Tanner Jones for a while.  From his "top of the mountain" Canseco collection to his unparalleled custom card creations to his fantastically well-written blog posts that litter his website, Tanner has a passion, enthusiasm and genuine love for card collecting - and the hobby - that I find energizing.  And after the most recent "chapters" in his card collecting world, he has decided to share his story in book form.

I'm not shocked......but I was really excited to see this new title pop up on Amazon.  It was an insta-purchase.

Tanner's book reads quite easily.  He writes with a conversational tone that paints a picture of each episode he's sharing.  From his first foray into cards, to his early buying and selling, all the way up to discovering his passion as a Supercollector - and beyond, it's quite the ride he takes us on.

But while baseball cards and Jose Canseco are the tangible focus of the book, this is more than just a sportscard read.  It's about finding something you enjoy, pursuing a passion and ultimately - knowing your limits and what are the real important things in one's life.  He could've been collecting comics or stamps, dolls or dishes and it wouldn't have mattered.  The stories would've still resonated.

I also really liked the feeling of "beginning, middle, end".  Tanner chose the perfect spot - the perfect instance to find the finish line in his read.  He even mentions this in one of the chapters. There are many times where I've read a book only to feel that it was put out too early - or too late.  Tanner's book comes at just the right time, and it's a wonderful standalone read.  The great thing is....his story is still going on.  Even as I type this, I'm noticing a bonus chapter on his website (be sure to check it out).  This isn't a stale, decades old recollection.....it's stuff that's happened - recently.  I think that's pretty cool.

There were a number of lines in the book that really struck me - as if he was writing them just for me.  For example, "An argument can be made that perhaps the act of collecting can be more enjoyable than having a collection."  How about "Scrolling through eBay, it just seems like a lot of white noise now, which is a stark difference from what my mindset was not too long ago."  Or my favourite... "Collecting is also about the thrill of the hunt, the camaraderie between collectors and the stories behind the cards."  Ain't that the truth!

Lastly, this book really hits me because for a number of years I've felt that I've got "a book inside me".  I don't know what it is or when it will come out, but I know one thing.....I enjoy writing on this blog (even if my grammar, punctuation and stream of consciousness seem a little all over the place) and I think I would enjoy the process of building something as impressive as a book.

Maybe one day.

For those looking for a fun, hobby-related read - how have you not yet bought this book??!!!  For those that enjoy the card collecting world from afar, give this one a shot.  And keep this mind, Tanner wrote and published this book independently.  That's an impressive task.  It's earned my money to buy a copy and I recommend highly that you give it a shot.

Sunday, January 20, 2019

OPINION - Trevor Linden Digital Cards

Well, the inevitable finally happened.  Trevor Linden not only has digital cards.....he has his first digital relic card.

And while I'm still torn on how the whole "digital card" element of my collecting will evolve, I thought I'd take a few moments to share my thoughts as they are at this time.

But first, let's take a look at what I had to say on the subject three years ago.

One thing that caught my eye in re-reading this post is that my thoughts leaned towards the immediacy of collecting - Topps Now comes to mind.  I still believe that this element of the hobby can be further explored and generate even more excitement.  Imagine seeing the card being built right on your smartphone mere minutes after the actual moment has been captured by photographers.  That could be cool?

I also noticed my thoughts on how digital card collecting might be the way to introduce some of the younger generation into collecting.....after all, one can enjoy the hobby on a daily basis via the Topps Skate! app - for free.

Yes, did I show my hand here?  I've been using the Topps Skate! app for the better part of a year now and I must say I am thoroughly enjoying it.  Granted, I swipe through the base cards like they are nothing now and look forward to the insert cards, but still....the fun of ripping a virtual pack (dare I say) is there.

One of the reasons I signed up was because I had learned that Linden garnered his first digital card (complete with an "autographed" parallel).  This finally brought the question to the forefront....

How will I go about collecting Trevor Linden digital cards?

Honestly, I can see myself chasing them in trade only.  I can't justify (yet) paying money to purchase a digital card.  Just so you know, a digital version of the Linden auto popped up on eBay a number of months back and was scooped up for about $25 bucks.  I'm just not ready to fork out actual cash for my non-tangible Lindens.

The challenge when it comes to trading for these digital offerings is that the only way you can sign up for the Topps Skate! app is through Facebook - and I am not on Facebook.  For the past year I've been building my digital collection as a "guest".  Believe it or not, this might be the straw that busts me into starting Facebook - who'd have thought??

Anyways, back to the latest Linden digital offering.

2018/19 Topps Skate! Triple Threads
#5 Alumni Relic digital card  (limited to 150)

First of all, this is a stunningly beautiful card.  This would rank high on the wantlist if it was an actual tangible item.  A bit of a shame that they don't do up the backs of their cards with any sort of statistical detail (that's one of the big drawbacks of Topps Skate!.....but they make up for it in volume of items).

It's a definite eye-catcher and this has me wavering a little more towards signing up and seeing what I can go to obtain one (I actually have some solid traders that I've picked up via my free daily packs of digital cards).

So what I've done with this card, and all of the other Linden digital cards that have surfaced, is that I'm taking a screen grab of the front and back, adding the cards to my Linden Master List (indicating that it is indeed a "digital card") and treating them just like every other card on my wantlist.

I'm still trying to wrap my head around the whole thing.  It's silly really......I don't "own" the card but I can access whenever I want to on the app just like I've brought it up so I could take a screen grab.  What's the difference between owning it and not??  It's all mental - it's all in my head.

But in my head......I don't own them.  So I am not crossing them off my list.

Side note.....one just sold for $5 on eBay - and was snatched up quick.

We hobbyists......no wonder my co-workers think I'm weird.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

LINDEN WOW OF THE WOW!!! - No Really.......WOW!!!

I've been collecting Trevor Linden cards for well over two decades now and I can say with great certainty that it is ABSOLUTELY a passion for me.  Why?  Well I can still get really excited when I see a special item cross my path, and I can get equally giddy when the item is a top dollar card or a ten-cent piece of cardboard.  It's so much more than just the monetary "value" associated with the piece......it's the connection it gives me to the player, the sport and the hobby.

This item is one of those that has absolutely knocked my socks off.

But first, allow me to set the stage.

Almost a decade ago, I stated right here on this blog that this card was one of my all-time favourites.  You can go ahead and read why in that blog post.

Six years ago, I shared a post about a great pic that I had landed with a similar theme to it.


And then just four short years ago, I talked about what jerseys would be on my short list (if I had such a list).

Well just last week I received an e-mail from a fellow collector that as I mentioned - knocked my socks off.  He wanted to see if my signed photo was for sale as he'd like to add it to his little NHLPA pickup.

GAK!!

Excuse me while I pick up my jaw from the floor.

Next to maybe an Olympic jersey, I would think that this would be one of the rarest of Linden game-used items out there.

The NHLPA tournament held in the early 90's were (for some reason) a real memorable moment in my Trevor Linden mind's eye.  And I really liked the jerseys the guys from the West were wearing.  Those yellow sweaters always have me do a double take.

It is just as stunning as I knew it would be and I am absolutely thrilled to know the person who is the proud owner of it.

Yeah......say what you want - this jersey is super cool.

I just want to keep staring at it.

Great puck marks show solid usage of the sweater.  I'm curious if there are any other photos out there that might have some of those marking on it.

So now I'm a little bit torn.  Do I sell my signed photo?

On the one hand, I'm not really a photo guy.  On the other hand, it is a pretty rare piece and I've stated on a number of occasions just how much I like it.

Without question I'm keeping an eagle eye out for another copy of the pic and in the meantime I'm going to dig the one I have out of the closet again and provide a high resolution scan so at least there's that.

But seriously........WOW!

Monday, January 14, 2019

PARKIE PROJECT - Ed Krysanowski

Usually when I make the trek down to the monthly local card show, it is done with the goal of catching up with some fellow hobbyists, mild window shopping and maybe a spur-of-the-moment pickup.  Occasionally I come home with an item or two that can help scratch off a couple wantlist lines.  This past weekend though, I got to check out some fun goodies.

New guy set up at the show and he had a whole bunch of 80's and 90's singles.  Monster box upon monster box.  It looked as if he took his childhood and plunked it on a table hoping to profit from a few sales.  He also had a showcase with a few higher-end items and that's where I saw a row of Parkies.

Ungraded......and just in the condition that I'm looking for.

They weren't marked so I inquired about the prices.  He made it sound like he didn't even really want to sell them.  Just a quick heads up....if you put it out on the table, prepare to sell it.

I asked to check them out.  At very least I could take a closer look at some of the pieces of cardboard.  There was a Meeker (got it), a Broda (got it) and a Boom Boom (need it) but the Geoffrion wasn't going to come home with me today.  I did notice that he had two copies of a card and so I took a stab at it.

A quick back and forth and it was a relatively easy sale.

1951/52 Parkhurst
#33 Ed Krysanowski

Yes, he's a common......but you need all the cards to complete the set.  I think this is a real solid addition to the collection.  Decent entering, nicer corners than a few of the others he's about to join and the back is real nice and clean.  No creases so I'm a happy camper.

So what do we know about Ed?

Nicknamed 'Sonny", he was a stay-at-home defenceman who never really made a huge impact on the ice (237 games played, 37 points) and was a year away from his final skate on NHL ice.  He was probably best known as the captain for the University of Toronto Varsity Blues men's team in 1946 and '47 and was referred to by his teammates as "the best player on the ice".  He was inducted to their Hall of Fame in 2006, shortly before he passed away.

It's a card like this that really shows just how cool a set like this is.  Krysanowski would likely be lost in the shuffle in today's hobby card world (heck, he might not even be high enough on the depth chart to garner a card) but in this iconic Parkie set.....he gets to sit alongside some of the absolute greats in the game.

Totally worth it.

It's a great start to the Parkie Project this year.  I have a good feeling I'll be adding another card sooner than later.  These pieces look great in person.


Current Collection - 20 cards

Sunday, January 13, 2019

WALLET CARD - I've Finally Fixed The Washing Machine (Incident)

I've said it a few times....it's amazing how fast time flies.  It's been almost four years now since my disastrous #WalletCard incident that left my favourite '76 Topps Traded piece of cardboard on the verge of completely falling apart.

Accidentally leaving the wallet  in your pants as they go into the wash is something that (I hope) won't happen again.  I'd hate to see this scary sight a second time...

YIKES!!!

I still have the card though.  Taped up and safely in the wallet.  After all, it was a gift from a collector, blogger and just a good person and it's a constant reminder of getting out there and doing good things.

That said.....I knew I'd need a new #WalletCard for the collection....and maybe even one for the wallet.

So I was gobsmacked when I saw a simple Twitter post selling not one, but two Oscar Gamble cards.


The price?  Two bucks - shipped....and he was sending from the States!! (albeit in a plain white envelope....which I was more than OK with).

A little added aside to the story...he forgot to ship the card initially and felt bad.  It had only been about a week or two and I chalked it up to the holiday season.  Nonetheless he insisted on refunding me my money - and then still shipped said cards!!

They showed up last week and I couldn't help but shake my head.  What a perfect pair of permed hair.  And it just works great as the one that has a slight ding on the side can now go straight into the wallet while the other (solid) offering can go into the player collection.  Two 'fros, one stone.

So a big thanks to OAC Cards Sales on Twitter for the great sale - and the kind gesture of basically giving me two Oscar Gamble cards.

Two.....#WalletCards

Oh.....and if you think I'm retiring the damaged copy......not on your life!!  It's two Oscars in the wallet now.  And a heck of a story.

Saturday, January 12, 2019

LINDEN CARD OF THE WEEK - Actually, It's The Top Card From 2018

So, my lack of blogging in 2018 cost me sharing one of my top Linden pickups of the year.  So I thought I'd take a moment to show the #1 Trevor Linden acquisition of the past year.

It was the big show here in town (a once-a-year affair) and I always make a point of going - who doesn't love a card show.  I spent a good chunk of time checking out each table, seeing if they had anything Linden related.  Most know me....so they keep stuff aside.  But I didn't find anything on my initial runthrough.

So I spent some time talking to the new vendors who set up for the first time at this show.  One person asked what I collect and I said "Trevor Linden.....die hard collector here".  He said that he had something for me and proceeded to drag out the biggest Rubbermaid container I have ever seen from under his table.

He was scrounging through various boxes and I started to think "What is this guy gonna pull out?"  Most times when a person says they have a Linden card, it ends up being a mid-range or low-end insert that really doesn't add up to much - especially since I've got most of those.

After a few minutes he says "You won't be disappointed."  Huh....either the means he has not sense of what Linden cards are out there, or he has a hidden gem.

He finally located the card and I could tell right away that it was a Mega Patch design.  I was pretty pumped.  But then he placed it on the table and my eyes grew tenfold.

2014/15 Upper Deck Premier
Mega Patch
#PMP-TL Shoulder Logo 1/3

This is no ordinary Mega Patch coming from the crest of the jersey.  This is a rare shoulder patch that I've not seen surface to date.

I tried my best to play it cool and asked what the price tag on it was.  He said he had never considered it until just right now.  He asked me to make an offer and after a couple moments I fired out a fair bid.  He said yes and I ran to the bank machine.

This was a terrific find - and I'm thrilled to land another in the world of Mega Patches.

I'm not holding outhouse of landing either of the other ones.  They've both surfaced and are out of my price range.  But I can do this....

...and honestly, that's good enough for me.


From a Trevor Linden standpoint, he only surfaced in six products during the 2017/18 season which didn't grow the checklist too much.  Maybe that's a sign that I'll be catching up on things as we move forward.  Not that I don't mind seeing him in new products, but I'd like to see the volume of his cards go down.  There is just too much stuff of his out there.  I can only imagine what it must be like for a player collector of say Martin Brodeur - or Wayne Gretzky.  Ouch.

T'was a good collecting year in 2018 for me and I hope that the new year brings me equally exciting cards.....and locally too.  I still can't believe I found this one at a show.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

PARKIE PROJECT - I Busted Him Out

I was excited to spend some time during my holiday break tidying up my office desk, putting some cards in their proper spot, double checking the checklists (yes...I actually enjoy that) and just seeing where I'm at in my hobby journey - and what I'd like to accomplish (or focus on in the new year).

One of the things that caught my eye (and I had completely forgotten about it) was that I had picked up a Bill Gadsby for my 51/52 Parkhurst project - but it was slabbed (PSA 2).

I say "was".......

1951/52 Parkhurst
#37 Bill Gadsby

I know this might not be the popular thing to do, but I'm building an ungraded set.  Having 104 cards in toploaders and this Gadsby in the slab would just be.....well, wrong in my eyes.  So I cracked it from the case.

And I couldn't be happier.  I think the card looks even more stunning now that it is free from the protective glass.

This copy sits perfectly with what I'm trying to do.  A solid looking piece of cardboard with a pretty easy price tag.  That;s the name of the game.

So where does this place me on my journey to completion?  I'm now 19 cards in.  The total cost of said cards.....$340cdn.  That's less than twenty bucks card.  To be honest, I don't know if that's good or bad, I'm just happy that this venture has been fun to chase - and easy on the wallet.

Let's see how many more I track down this year.


Current Collection - 19 cards

Sunday, January 6, 2019

HHOF AUTOS - Well Hello Old Friend

Ha ha ha.  I absolutely can't believe we have turned the calendar and are now firmly into the 2019 campaign.  Boy how time flies.

I hope everyone who still has hung on to this blog is doing well.  I've been busy with a bunch of projects on the go.  Suffice to say that my hobby activities have been more passive in 2018 - but that doesn't mean I've abandoned the hobby.

I still do my daily (hourly) eBay searches - but I just haven't picked up nearly the volume of cards I have in the past.  I love to pop into the hobby chat world for a bit and still find Hobby Insider a great place to visit.  The other sites have fallen a bit by the wayside, but that doesn't mean I don't like 'em.

I try to go to as many of the local monthly shows as I can and head out to the trade nights when my schedule allows.  I am a very lucky person that I have not only shows, but trade nights that I can attend in person - being able to physically go somewhere to get my hobby fix is a real blessing.

My wallet didn't get the workout it has in previous years (my bank account thanks me for that) but it doesn't mean I didn't pick up some great items.

And lastly, I can say with 100% certainty that I love this hobby as much as ever, I feel really comfortable with where things sit in my collecting world and I can't wait to see what the new year will bring.

And with that.....let me share what 2019 has already brought.

FIVE STUNNING NEW CARDS FOR THE HHOF AUTO PROJECT!!!


Brett Hull
(Inducted in 2009)

Boy do I ever like these ol' Sign Of The Times sets.  Really pumped to get a player like Hull who just identifies perfectly with this era of card collecting.


Guy Lafleur
(Inducted in 1988)

That hair!!  Great memories.  These Epic Signatures cards are beautiful to boot.  Great real estate for a solid sig.


Vladislav Tretiak
(Inducted in 1989)

Another fantastic auto set from back in the day.  The Inkredible cards from UD Retro again leave a great open space for a beefy signature.  And if you haven't seen the checklist for this set, do some homework - stunning.

To get a player like Tretiak in a set like this is a perfect fit for my project.


Mario Lemieux
(Inducted in 1997)

This was a really exciting one to add.  I absolutely love this card design....and it's shiny.  Yes, if you look closely you'll notice that the autograph isn't as strong as maybe it could be.  But I don't blame Mario for that....it's the guy in charge of the pen he used.  It's not a faded sig, it's just not the right pen type for that card surface.

Regardless, I think it's a beauty.


Gordie Howe
(Inducted in 1972)

This is probably the biggest card in the collection to date - and it is amazing to see in person.  A really solid autograph (with the Mr. Hockey designation) that was an earlier offering in the signature world.

Now I must confess - I cheated a bit to add this card to the collection.  See.....for those that know about the project, I have to trade for the cards that get added to the collection but I have to say that I did purchase this one.  However.....I did sell a number of cards earlier in the evening that pretty much covered the cost of this Howe.  So - it counts.

They're my rules anyways.  So there.  :)

When I started this project, I had the goal of hitting 100 cards via trade.  With these five new adds, I'm up to 78 - and I can definitely see the end goal in sight.  There are still a number of "easier" autos to be had.  I have a feeling that this goal will be revised at some point.


Anyways, I hope that this is just the start of what will be another fun and exciting hobby year.  I do hope to blog a little more (EIGHT POSTS IN 2018??!!!) and I hope you'll check out my new pickups on occassion.

All the best to you and yours in 2019!


Current Collection - 78 HOF Autos