Friday, March 30, 2012

A package from Dayf

Received this nice big envelope

from every one's favorite ponymiester, Dayf.  Now, if you don't know who Dayf is, shame on you.

He is the artistic/creative talent behind Cardboard Junkie, if you are not reading his blog, you should.   I sent him a package, similar in size filled with these,

What do you call these? I call them "blockers" as in they block you from finding a game used.  Dayf uses them for sketching, mostly ponies, but he did sketch a nice Mr. Met for Jacobmrly of Starting Nine.  I have another small stack for him, but I'm waiting for it to grow a little before I ship it out. BTW, it took me 3 tries to get that to scan. I didn't realize that the back cover of the scanner is white. Like looking for a polar bear in a snow storm.

So what was in that package? A boatload of Yankees, which are always appreciated and this masterpiece

and the back

Absolutely awesome, of course that is one of the best scenes in the movie. My personal favorite is where Jake is begging for his life from Carrie Fisher Jake's Excuses.

Thanks again Dayf.  Like I said in my previous post, I love trading.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Trading, past and present

My last post didn't garner very many comments. Zero to be exact, but that's OK. Hopefully, if you read that post, you went back to look at your own site to see if your e-mail address is easy to find.

The reason I made that post is because it effects something near and dear to my heart, trading. I LOVE to trade. In fact, I think it is in my top 3 things I love about this hobby.  I've traded with people all over the country, as well as Great Britain and Hong Kong.

Trading is so easy to do (now). Check some one's web page, check your duplicates, send an e-mail with a proposal and with any luck you'll have a trade in short order.  I've completed some trades in less than 5 minutes.

It wasn't always like this.  One of the reasons I bought my first computer back in 1995 was to contact other collectors and trade my extra cards.  There is a newsgroup "" which I use to peruse looking for people to trade with.  It still exists, but most of the posts are promoting people's ebay auctions.  I didn't see any posts looking to trade.

But other things now take that newsgroups place.  There are several "bulletin board" based trading groups.  I belong to several, and I'm sure some of you also belong to one or more.  If you're not, you are missing out on great trading opportunities.  The first board I joined was Sportscardfun.  I've been a member there since about 2003.  At first, it was a subscription based board, I think it cost $15. for a year's membership.  They have individual forums for all sports and non-sports cards.  They also have a point system where you leave a point for a good trade.  My current point total is 246.  That means I've traded with 246 individual traders.  You can't leave points for second, third, or beyond trades, it's just the way their system works.  In all likelihood, I've probably done 300 trades.  There are several people there that I have traded with numerous times.

Another fine board is The Bench, I've probably been there about 5 or 6 years.  The Bench's forums are broken out more than SCF.  Instead of one forum for baseball, they have 3.  They also have many other forums, definitely worth your time to check them out.  Their point system is more refined than SCF, in that 4 categories are rated on a scale of 1 to 5.

The last trading site I'm active with it Trading Bases.  This is an invitation only group.  You must have someone recommend you for membership.  Now some people might see that as a pain, but it helps keep the

out.  I'm sure most of you know who this is, but if you don't.  It is "Riff Raff", from the Rocky Horror Picture Show.  Trading Bases is a message board group, the traders there are great, generous people.

My other way of creating a trade is to look at a blogger's want list, if they are posted, and make offers to them. I've traded with several people whose blogs I read, as well as people who read this blog. (Granted, its not that many right now, but it is improving.)

So, that's trading today.  For you young whippersnappers that don't remember the dark days, before the Internet, I will regale you with how trading use to work.  Back in the day, if you wanted to trade, you took our a classified ad.  No, not in your local newspaper, in a hobby publication, no not Beckett.  The publication of choice was Sports Collector's Digest (SCD).  I remember placing ads in the late 70's and early 80"s.  They usually went something like this: "Want to trade for 1982 Topps, Fleer, Donruss, have many extras, please send your want list," then my address.

I would get a letter or two from "Joe Collector" a few days after SCD was published.  He would state that he needed "X" cards.  I would send him a letter back, stating I had some of his cards, and a list of what I needed.  He would send a letter back stating he had "Y" cards for me, but now didn't need some of the cards that I had for him, because he picked them up at a show, or from opening more packs.  At this point, one of two things happened: based on book value I would send my cards for his or the trade would just implode and  disappear.

Now remember, it could take several days for letters to go back and forth across the country.  Trades like this could take up to a month to complete.  Usually, the amount of cards discussed in the original trade slowly diminished due to purchases or other trades with other collectors.  It also cost you a couple of bucks to run the ad and you always took the chance that you would stiffed out of your cards.  I'll take the Internet over a classified ad any day.

So, now you know I love to trade, check out my want and to trade lists and lets trade.  Because right now, I can't afford to buy any cards.

The Snob

Friday, March 16, 2012

A public service announcement


Especially those bloggers who trade or wish to trade.  Please, please, please. Somewhere on your homepage,
have your e-mail address.  It is extremely frustrating to look at someone's page, find a ton of cards for them and me, and then have no way of contacting them.

Yes, I can get in touch with you by replying to a post.  But some pages are only want and trade lists, with no posting ability, and I don't like to post off-topic within a post.

Now, I know some people are concerned with spiders mining their e-mail for nefarious purposes, so trick the spiders. Use "at" instead of @, and "dot" instead  of .

The Snob thanks you

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Why such a Snob?

I've been having difficulties in writing this particular post.  The difficulty is in answering my own question.

I'm not really sure why I am a Snob.  I think part of the reason is because I'm, ahem, frugal, (or insert the synonym of your choice.)  If I'm going to spend my hard earned cash on a baseball card, I want it to be as near to perfect as possible. No scratches, no "soft corners", not off-centered. For game used (this is a huge pet peeve of mine), the carpeting must match the curtains.  This is just one card that annoys me,

Where did that blue swatch come from? There isn't even any blue in the background of Ozzie's picture and the area surrounding the swatch is purple. Seriously Upper Deck, you couldn't find either a picture of Ozzie in a blue uniform, or a red swatch of uniform?  Picture this card with a swatch of red, one word for it, awesome.

Now, this my issue.  For those of you who are not condition sensitive, I tip my cap to you.  But I just can't add a card to my collection that I would not enjoy, and I hate it when I collate a set and find  cards with  dinged corners, that slipped by me.  This condition sensitivity is probably one of the reasons I am having a difficult time completing my 1973 Topps set.  If you know anything about this set, you know that the quality of  the cardboard stock used to produce it, was weak.  This set suffers from a severe case of soft corners, and a moderate case of off-centered printing.  I only need about 10 cards to complete it, and unfortunately, one of those cards is the Schmidt rookie.  Whenever I look for these last 10 cards, it is invariable that I find them with some sort of problem.  The set will be completed someday, I just don't know when.

"Why such a snob?", let's do some research.  My first thought was that as a Snob, I like things neat,orderly and close to perfect.  So I thought, what in my background made me such a neat-nik. Well I was a first born, and I thought that maybe my parents had difficulty with my toilet training, what experience did they have with it, I was their first.  Maybe I'm Anal Retentive?  I did some research, and it appears that the concept of AR is not well respected in the medical community.  Freud's findings on this subject are being questioned and found to be lacking, emphasis is being placed on the lack of plumbing during Freud's time.

Ok then, what about OCD.  There are a few blogs I follow Baseball Obsession-itisMy Sports Obsession that have the word Obsession right in the title.  It must be that.  "An obsession is defined as a thought, impulse, or image that either recurs or persists and causes severe anxiety."  I don't think my snobbery causes anxiety, but there is the recurring theme of avoiding "imperfect" cards, and trying to complete entire sets of cards, shortprints included.  I don't believe that my obsession causes compulsion.  "A compulsion is a ritual/behavior that the individual with OCD engages in repeatedly, either because of their obsessions or according to a rigid set of rules."  The only thing that I think borders on compulsion is my daily ebay searches.

I researched two other items.  One being birth order, what I found doesn't really apply to snobbery, but does in a certain regard to being a collector (future post).  The second, and you may laugh, is astrology.  I was born on September 3 (as was Charlie Sheen, winning!!) making us both Virgo's.  I won't dwell on all the traits I found for Virgo's, but these caught my eye. ... but Virgo's earthy qualities steady this trait and gives an excellent eye for detail. ...can appear to worry unduly about the need to make things as perfect as they can be, ...Virgoan preciseness, refinement, fastidious love of cleanliness, hygiene and good order, conventionality and aristocratic attitude of reserve. They are usually observant, shrewd, critically inclined, judicious, patient...

Well, there you go,  "excellent eye for detail", "make things as perfect as they can be",  "preciseness, and good order".  That's me, the Snob, all over.  

P.S. In addition to having problems answering my own question, I kept typing "Why suck a snob?", some kind of Freudian slip, I guess

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Substitute post

Now batting for The Baseball Card Snob, Manny Mota, Mota, Mota.

Ok, this is a quick substitute post since I don't have time to properly form the original post I wanted to write.

If you read my last offering, you saw that we spent the kids winter break in NYC.  Well it was Brooklyn, Crown Heights to be exact.  We were at the Brooklyn Museum (very nice, but not for children) and inquired about somewhere close by to eat.  The woman behind the counter suggested Tom's Diner.

Now when I heard her say Tom's Diner, I immediately thought of this
Tom's Diner.  I'm sure some of the older collector's also had the same thought.

Well we walked over to the diner, waited a few minutes and were seated. This is a very old "diner", and not what comes to mind when I think of a diner.  This is a standard issue New Jersey diner,

In fact, this is the infamous Tick Tock Diner on Route 3 in Clifton, NJ, as seen in Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives. It was also the haunt of the cast of The Uncle Floyd Show, back in the day.  If you enlarge the picture, you might see the Diner's slogan on the clock "Eat Heavy". But I digress.

Well Tom's Diner looks like this on the outside,

Looks more like the candy store I described in the last post.  Anyway, we sit down to eat and something on the wall catches my eye.  There were lots of things on the wall but this stuck out.

The lyrics to the song Tom's Diner.  I think you can make out the writing at the bottom.  But if you can't, it says "I Came, I saw, I wrote,  Suzanne Vega."  Pretty freakin neat.  Had no idea this was the place.

So if you're ever in Crown Heights and want to see a little piece of Pop Music history, stop in at Tom's Diner on Washington Ave and try the Eggcream, I hear it's really good.