A soloist joins a band…

I’ve never been one to join a group, not really a group joiner.  Never wanted to be associated with a specific cohort or any kind of click.  I felt it was unnecessary or just really not for me…partially due to anxiety, partially due to an unwillingness to interact with people I felt might not click well with me.  I’ve always been like that, well, I’ve mostly been like that.  The past few years I’ve shifted a bit and have opened up to others.  There have been a few catalysts for this.  The bride for one, of course.  But also realizing that connecting with people that share your interests is important.  I’ve been able to make some of that happen with the card show guys I stop by each month, well…each month prior to 2020. 

Earlier last year, I was asked to attend a group meeting with other card collectors by Terry Kneis.  He’s been my go to vintage guy through the years.  Not because of his charming personality…because, that isn’t his M.O.  I like to stop by his table because he is crazy organized.  Possibly over the top organized for a card show table at times.  There is a definite sense of needing to ask permission to see his cards.  I think that tends to push people away most of the time…but for me, I love it.  I LOVE that he controls his product to a point that it doesn’t get disturbed by randos.  All of his cards are in order by year.  Every card has a price on the back.  The lesser expensive ones come in penny sleeves and the expensive ones include top loaders.  For me, it’s a time saver that I cherish…plus, he offers up a chair for you to sit and go through your items!!!  That’s right a chair at a card show!!!  I can sit down with my phone, go through my google doc spreadsheet and check off the cards I pull as I put them aside. 

HUGE TIME SAVER YA’LL!!!

When I get home, my checklist is updated and all I have to do is remove the penny sleeves and drop the cards in their respective binders.  Have I mentioned the time saver aspect? 

Back to the club part of this wandering story…Terry invited about 25 gents and ladies to his house earlier last February for the Oregon Sports Card Association meeting.  It was a quaint gathering with a wide variety of vintage card collectors.  I was definitely out of my league, as far as baseball knowledge but had a great time.  At the end of the gathering, Terry hands out a manilla envelope with a special gift for the days participants.  Me being a newcomer to the group, Terry handed me a $100 off any card that he was selling from his house that day.  The caveat was that it had to be from an assortment of cards on a special table.  Well, this was on that table and I had to grab it.  I could not pass this beautiful card up.  It was phenomenal.  Sensational even. 

1956 Jackie Robinson – #30

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I haven’t really dug into the ‘50’s sets yet, so this is about as nice of a first card as you could get…in my mind. 

One of the activities during the meeting was a trivia party where I was teamed up with an older gentlemen, Steve.  Steve has won many of these competitions and wasn’t overly thrilled to have a new jack join his team, but I think I held my own.  We didn’t come in first place, but we did finish tied for second.  Which was great if you ask me.  Having come in second place, were granted the choice of one card from a 1950’s binder with semi-stars and could pick one card under $80.  I went with this beautiful Monte Irvin card…mostly because I had just wrapped up reading Willie Mays biography and Monte was heavily involved in much of that storytelling…plus I thought it seemed appropriate to pick a Dodger and a Giant on the same day.

1954 Monte Irvin – #3

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Today also marks the birthday of Martin Luther King Jr.  I hope everyone has had a chance to listen to one of his important speeches or read an article about his life.  He was a great man that fought for change that people are still fighting for today.  Maybe one day, we’ll get a chance to see past our skin color and political viewpoints and move forward as humans.  It’s a lot to ask for, but it’s also something that is very well achievable in our lifetime.  I sure hope for my kids sake that we can get there.  So, Happy MLK day everyone. Fuji shared a couple of his favorite MLK cards over at The Chronicles of Fuji and i wanted to share the first three i could find today.

As always, thank you for reading!

-Cardboard Hogs

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Here’s a video of my favorite speech by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Collector seeking Autographs

I used to be an autograph seeker in my adolescent years.  Cards and a fresh sharpie in hand, fighting my way to the front in hopes of getting an illegible scribble from the baseball stars of the 1980’s.  After a while i build up quite a collection that i’m proud of and like to look back on every once in a while.  San Antonio didn’t have a major league team in San Antonio (AA San Antonio Dodgers though!), but my mother…being the most amazing working / single mother that she was (and still is…) would take me to Arlington a couple times each summer.  We’d mostly go the Rangers games rather than the Astros in Houston…i guess i’ve always been an American League guy…or maybe it was those horrific rainbow sherbet jerseys…the trips each year would include the Yankees, of course and maybe the Blue Jays or Mariners.  Looking back, we went to quite a few Mariners games as a kid and now i live in the PNW, it’s like it was fate or somethign?  My mother is an incredibly generous and giving person, and she always went out of her way to make sure i had what i needed, and most times what i wanted.  Even if it was a terrible idea.  Like sitting in an open air stadium under the relentlessly pounding late afternoon sun of Texas in July and August.  It was a brutal request from an only child after driving for 5 hours, but she obliged, albeit with some resentment in her eyes…but hey, i’m an only child :)!!

As i got older and realized i could maximize my inventory while minimizing my road trips through through the mail autographs, or TTM as every single one of you kids out there reading this knows.  I did this for a couple of years and had some success, check out the page of autographs HERE.  DOIT!!

As i got even older…and was able to finally get that Rickey Henderson auto i always wanted…but can’t seem to find anymore…shit…i’ll dig it out.  Anyways, after that autograph, i decided to stop asking adults for their signature.  Seemed kinda silly of me i guess…not sure why, maybe it was that i was starting to get older than the people i wanted autographs from?  Maybe I was a little embarrassed?  Maybe it was simply the asking for something and being shy about it?  Not really sure.  That said, i have nothing against collecting autos…especially if they have some kind of story associated with them.  Unfortunately, the cards below have no great story other than they are what i pulled from the box i picked up at Brian’s shop.  Here they are!  There are 5 of them and they are nice pieces to have in the collection for now.  You gotta wait for these guys, some of them never pan out and other may take a couple of years to get there…so enjoy.

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Will Benson – Cleveland Indians – 1st Bowman Card16-bd-robert-tyler-auto-227250

Robert Tyler – Colorado Rockies – 1st Bowman Card 227/25016-bd-dylan-carlson-auto-316499

Dylan Carlson – St. Louis Cardinals – 1st Bowman Card 316/49916-bd-ben-bowden-auto

Ben Bowden – Colorado Rockies – 1st Bowman Card16-bd-anfernee-grier-auto

Anfernee Grier – Arizona Diamondbacks – 1st Bowman Card

Actually got to see this guy play a couple of games last year in Hillsboro for the Hops.  He was the 39th pick from Auburn in last years draft, so there is some hope that he could find his way to the big leagues in a year or two.

The jumbo box included a couple other cards of note that i was pretty excited about.  This lovely Griffey Jr. card, which could have been posted in my previous post on Sons and Fathers…doesn’t top Gavin’s 1/1 auto, but not a bad looking card to have…and Bo Jackson…

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These Bowman Chrome cards are really nice cards to hold…but do smell a little bit like syrup as Sooz mentioned in a very cool and random tweet a couple days ago.  Speaking of Yankees…Here are the last two cards i wanted to share.  A couple of guys i have high hopes for this year that came through via trades Cushman made out on, or at least the Yankees fans hope so.

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I apologize for the fingerprints on that Sheffield card, not only do they smell like syrup…they love to grab hold of anything that touched the surface.  So much grit!

I hope you had a good MLK day and took a moment to understand the importance of his life.  Normally, this is where i post a music video that ties in to the cards or story of the day but i wanted to post something appropriate for the day rather than the post.  I listened to this while i was at work today and…well, you should listen to.  And in case you question why #BlackLivesMatter, it’s very thoughtfully explained and passionately addressed by Dr. King.