Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Who You Gonna Call? A COMPLETE SET!

Just in time for Halloween today, I finally get to unveil my other big completed project for 2018. I have officially completed the entire Cryptozoic Ghostbusters autograph set!

This set took me a few years to do and it definitely wouldn't have been possible without some major help from friends. Thank you @Jake1725,Gavin over at Baseball Card Breakdown, My Wife, the late George Nadeau who held a contest that I won to add it and his support, @90sNicheFBcard and

Wes who helped locate and acquire this last piece I was missing in this Michael Ensign who seemed to have disappeared right when I was at the very end. But, nobody gets by Wes!

Here is a up-close look to most of the other set in case you haven't seen them on here before.














I couldn't believe that I finished the Psych seasons 1-4 autograph set this year and then to top it off with another autograph set. Stunning.

Now that this is complete, it's time to chase down the Film-Cel cards, sketch cards , slime cards (my next set goal), and the patch cards.

Thanks again for everyone who helped me out with this project. I couldn't have done it without you!

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

The Origins Of A Cardboard Addict:Trying To Be A Hot Shot

Back in 1996, I never considered myself a "Hot Shot". You know, one of those kids that can come into a classroom and the room brightens and everyone bows down to them. I could picture them bursting into the room like Molly Shannon and yelling out "Supastarrr!"

When I came into the classroom with my Giants Starter Jacket, blue sweatpants and my dad's old winter hat, I felt the class turned into Jerry Seinfeld and looked at me with a dark glance, "Hello Newman."

I was okay with that though. I was a bright spot in other ways that many didn't recognize except the adults. I helped those who needed help with schoolwork, I made friends with those kids who didn't have any, I picked up and helped the teacher in the classroom. I didn't feel like I had to be the popular hot shot of the class. I wanted to be who my grandmother molded me to be, a good person.

I think I did well with that even to today. I always put others before myself. I pride myself on that and know my grandmother is smiling down on me from heaven where I will be with her someday. Just hopefully not for awhile. Sorry, gram, love life too much right now.

Anyways, also back in 1996 I have mentioned on here before how I started digging deeper into collecting baseball cards. Up to 1996, it was pretty much mostly football with a few other sports sprinkled in, but after that 1996 World Series I was all on board with baseball. I even was such a fan that I was find picking up some older baseball stuff which at that point was 1993.

One of my coolest yard sale finds in 1993 was 1993 Upper Deck Fun Pack Hot Shots cards. This product was targeted for children with it's 225 card base set that was full of, well, fun. Creative subsets and a child catchy design.

The 1993 Fun Pack cards were available in hobby and retail. The base set was broken down into many subsets which started out the set and featured Stars of Tomorrow cards 1-9, Hot Shots cards 10-21, Kid Stars cards 22-27, Upper Deck Heroes cards 28-36, 37-209 were base in teams alphabetical order, then All-Star Advice cards 210-215, All-Star Fold Outs cards 216-220, and Checklists finished up the set with cards 221-225.

The Hot Shot subset cards which I found at this yard sale were only available in retail packs or through a mail-in redemption promotion available in hobby packs. I happened to find one of the promo cards in the batch. It seems when looking on eBay there are stamped and un-stamped versions of this card. I assume stamped means it was redeemed and non-stamp means it wasn't.

On the back of this card it tells you that you will receive three random Hot Shots "heat activated" cards in the mail if you exchange this card in for them. Hence the name Trade Upper Deck or as we call it an Upper Deck Trade Card.

Along with the the Trade Card, I also found a Griffey Jr (in 1996 I hadn't started to PC him yet so he was just another player) and this Will Clark.

The design has a 90's feel, features a player with a dark background. The dark background is the fun part. As I mentioned above, these cards are heat sensitive. So just leave your thumb on the card and it reveals some 90's vibes....

Then put your whole hand all over the card and warm it up to reveal this. Looks like a sweater that Uncle Phil would wear in the Fresh Prince Of Bel Air
These cards were the closest to a Hot Shot I was ever in school. Including High School. Even now I will say.

Upper Deck put out some great products for kids in the 90's and always found ways to catch their interest with unique innovations to the hobby such as this. I know after finding these they had my attention. But, other great child based products like Collectors Choice and the Upper Deck flagship kept me excited as well. I think some days we need to go back to the simple things in the hobby like this to help bring the kids back. Or at least like for me, keep the child alive.

Monday, October 29, 2018

Traded And To Be Traded

In the last few months, I have been keeping my eyes out for trades or opportunities where I may be able to start one. As long as I know I can trust the other party, I will usually jump right in and ask if a certain card or cards are available for trade.

Recently, @Odiegoat was holding one of his weekly sales and there was a few cards I had my eye on. Fortunately for me, I asked if they were for trade instead of just for sale and he said yes. So this was just the start as I now put the pressure on myself to find something he would want in return. That's the biggest issue when initiating a trade like this especially starting it up with a new trading partner,finding a return.

Luckily that wasn't an issue here. We both finished up this trade fast and mailed them out. Here are the three cards I scored in this trade.

Parallel from 2018 Certified of Odell Becham Jr.

A swatch of pylon, this is the card that initiated the trade, from Panini's Father's Day. I love unique swatches and really liked the overall appeal of this card.

And the last card was this Leaf Trinity 2017 rookie autograph of Steelers RB James Connor. This card is inscribed and is numbered 24/25.

You are probably wondering why I would want a Steelers RB card. Well, he is a hot player this season and I have mentioned before how I do chase some of the upcoming stars rookie autographs. I had a sweet Conner autograph last year that I kick myself for trading away. Luckily now I have this one to replace it.

A big thanks to @odiegoat for the great cards and easy trade!

Another player I have been pushing really hard to get a rookie autograph of is Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes. So far I have had no success despite my fairly decent trade fodder of these guys,

Max Holloway autograph

1/1 Norman Powell auto from Select.

Giannis Antetokounmpo auto. I really don't mind holding onto this one out of all of the cards I have up for offer.

Alex Ovechhin auto that is numbered to 99

Thierry Henry autograph. This is not an easy one to find and it's low numbered.

Jimmie Johnson Gold Prizm parallel /10

Kyle Kuzma parallel I still can't figure out which one it is
I guess not only would I accept Pat Mahomes rookie autograph in a deal for some of these, but other autographs I would accept as well would be,
  • Tony Gwynn Auto card
  • Steve Young Auto card
  • Jerry Rice Auto Card
  • Frank Thomas Auto Card
  • Brett Favre Auto Card
  • John Elway Auto Card
  • Tom Brady Auto Card 
  • Randy Moss Auto Card
  • Kobe Bryant Auto Card
  • Tim Duncan Auto Card
  • Karl Malone Auto Card
  • Wayne Gretzky Auto Card
  • Mario Lemiex Auto Card
These must be official autograph cards from a company and not IP, TTM kinda deal. And they must be cards only.

I also have a TON of basketball, hockey, NASCAR, Soccer (not sure anyone collects it), and UFC cards to trade.

So my question of the day is, how do you guys initiate a trade?

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Big Blue Sunday's:Highs And Lows

This season is simply a wash. The Giants came into this season giving me high expectations but have only given low results. They come into today's game at Metlife Stadium at 1-6 taking on the first place Washington Redskins. Who woulda thunk-it?

The Giants have already begun making a few moves to start the complete rebuild and I expect many more to happen as this team is a few years away from winning. It's a lot further away than I even thought.

My recent mail day from the generous @imqualifying, helped bring some brightness to these true blue days as a fan.

This package she sent along just because. It did include other cards and Giants but I wanted to take focus on these ones today. Not that I didn't appreciate them all.

Included in her package was a great photograph from 1991 Fleer Ultra of Maurice Carthon plowing over a defender. This is what Giants football used to be like.

Sterling Shepard has shown some really bright spots this year but had other games where you are shaking your head. I think more consistency from this guy would help.

Evan Engram has spent most of the year hurt and disappointing fantasy owners and fans along the way. I wished now the Giants hadn't drafted him and instead moved up a few spots to grab Mahomes. Can you imagine Mahomes, Barkley, Odell, Shepard on an offense together? Wow!

Eli, Eli, Eli. You have taken the brunt of most of this and all you have done is try your best. But, for the first time as a huge fan of yours, there are times this is your fault. 75% of it is the olines fault for not giving you enough time. But, you have also missed Odell wide open many, many times this year and overthrown or under-thrown other guys. I appreciate everything you have done in blue, but I almost think it's time my friend.

Odell, love your passion. But, you gotta calm down some. I know this season is frustrating as a fan, I can only imagine what it's like for a player. Especially one that wants to win. Keep up the big season you are heading towards and keep living up to one of the best WR's in the NFL.

Jonathan Stewart, well, I only feature you because this is my first Giants card of you. I didn't know you were included into a product yet. I am glad of your leadership however in guiding Saquon along the way.
A thanks goes out to Bethany for this nice mail day. Much appreciated!

I am not sure what to expect today of the Giants. Will they come out playing or will they start slow and lose another at home before they bye week? Or can they do something miracoluos and win 9 games in a row? Doubtful, but as a fan I can stay with that positive thought.

Either way, let's do our best today boys and work hard. I am always going to back you win or lose til the day I die.

Saturday, October 27, 2018

The Origins Of A Cardboard Addict: I Was Stuck On Upper Deck

When growing up, there were only two ways to look at the word stuck. There were things you "stuck with" such as my love of the NY Giants you can see in this picture at an early age,

Or things you are "stuck doing" such as my mother's hatred of being in photos as you can see by her unimpressed expression in this same photo. But, when you go to someone's house for Christmas and you or your child get a present, you are expected to get a photo done as well. Not that I was really a fan of photos being taken either but I was still "stuck doing" it.

As an adult now, things I "stuck with" is playing sports and always trying to be active. I also "stuck with" being a NY sports fan for the Yankees and Giants. I also "stuck with" working hard for everything I have. I also have "stuck with" ,or at least believe I have, with always being a positive ,polite, good person for all of those who meet me or even talk to me on social media.

Also as an adult, we see many things we are "stuck doing". We are stuck working, paying bills, grocery shopping, running errands, cleaning house, raising kids (well this one is really an option but I assume most will in some form or another), and so much more responsibilities.

It was so much easier as a kid when you are just "stuck doing" minor chores and getting a picture taken of yourself.

Collecting was also much easier when I was a child as well. I have spoken many times on here how accessible card packs were to me back then vs now. There were many things in my hobby youth I have "stuck with".

I have "stuck with" the same sorting format. I have "stuck with" collecting the same things besides adding a few more on since then. I have also "stuck with" collecting products from the 90's and I have also "stuck with" being a fan of and collecting Upper Deck trading cards.

Even though it's not quite as many purchases as it used to be since Upper Deck only owns the right to the hockey license, I still dive into some Goodwin Champions and collect their older NFL licensed stuff. And of course their late 90's Spx.

One of my favorite Upper Deck products in the mid to late 90's was Collectors Choice. It was very affordable at .99 a pack and I could easily just grab one in the grocery store. That's exactly what I did back in 1995. I bought tons and tons.

I loved the base card designs with their bold colors and the photography was second to none. But, what really grabbed me was it's one-per-pack Stick Ums insert. It was simply just a sticker, but it featured bold colors and names even I could recognize at the time. Keep in mind I really didn't get football completely down until 1996-1997 with player names.

There were 90 stickers to collect in the set and you can find the stickers in three different versions. One version features a quad of players. One features a player trio along with a team helmet. The final version came as a single player.

Today I am featuring the quad and trio stickers. Note that the players featured on the front of the card have a theme as they are featured on there by division. Remember when AFC and NFC had a Central division in the NFL? Well, now you will.

Inaugural year for the Jags in 1995 so I was chasing down anything with their helmet or logo on it. This one features two Jags and a HOFer in Rod Woodson.

Jay Novacek was another dominant Cowboys Tight End the Giants struggled against yearly.

Classic 90's Jets logo

Some hard hitters on this one including a FB that could block big time.

There were too many not-so-great James Stewarts in 1995 as there was one for both the Jags who they drafted and the Vikes. Both were running backs and both didn't prove much.

Kevin Greenes long locks made girls jealous and QB's running when they saw them coming.

Along with the Jags, it was Inaugural time for the Panthers in 1995 as well and I chased their stuff as well. It's probably why today I still have a thing for both teams.

Some NY Giants love finally! But, it's Dave Brown. Oy!

This one features four great players. Haley was a sacking beast! Randall was a Barry Sanders at QB. Swann and Harvey had their moments as well.

Vinny Testeverde that played for what felt like 100 years and all of the teams and a very underrated Carl Pickens.

Four recognizable names, at least for me, that some teams wished they didn't recognize. This one also features the classic Buc's logo. I prefer the newer one honestly.
A lot of kid collectors at the time would take these and stick them all over their notebooks, Trapper Keepers (remember those), clothing, "paper bag" book covers, back packs, fanny packs, and so much more. Myself on the other hand, well, you see what my hobby OCD allowed me to do with mine. That hobby OCD is something else I have been "stuck with".

When I found these stickers the other day, they took me back and brought lots of warm memories along with them. So I found myself "stuck doing" this post for today about them. This is one thing I am fine with "stuck doing" as an adult.