Friday, November 30, 2012

Sometimes they get it right...

I realize I bitch a lot on this blog.  It's human nature I suppose to express discourse over things you don't like.  But sometimes I need to celebrate the good things. Especially good things in this hobby.  I remember a few years back when just started up.   It was a novel idea in the sports card market place.  We already had places like ebay, and, to pick up and sell cards on, but COMC, as we all like to call it, offered something a little different.  Now is becoming and starting to venture into comic books, non-sports cards, gaming, and magazines.  The biggest complaint I  and many others had was the shipping and handling costs from buying from COMC.  It was pretty ridiculous at the start.  And it favored buying fewer, higher end cards.  If you were looking to fill a set or even get some cheap player cards COMC was a nice starting point, but buying in bulk on the site ended up getting you a higher shipping cost than you paid for all your cards. Now they've dialed it in, streamlined their operation and you can get your whole order shipped for a flat $3.00 with delivery confirmation. You can always upgrade to faster service, but for me allowing a week to have my order packaged and sent is no big deal.  And to be honest I've never waited a full week until I got my shipping confirmation email from them.  They also have great customer service. The one time I had a problem with an order, I was missing a card from my shipment, I emailed the company and they sent the card out the next day with an apology.

The last couple of years COMC has had some great Black Friday promotions.  This year was by far the best and to be honest a great deal.  If you didn't at least look at the site on Black Friday you missed out.  Not only did you get free shipping if you bought and shipped over 10 cards on BF, they credited your account 10 cents for every card you bought.  (They actually offered friee shipping all weekend through Cyber Monday) And a vast majority of the sellers had discounts.  I think I ended up with over 5 dollars in credit when all was said and done.  I picked up a lot of cheap cards for various base and insert sets I'm working on and a nice stack of new Frank Thomas cards for that PC, and some affordable 1963 Topps cards for the that project as well.

And while I've never tried to sell on COMC, not my cup of tea, but that's another blog post, I will say as a buyer it's gotten so much better.  And that's a great news for card collectors.

cb out.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Secret Stash found of Series 7 Lego Mini Figures

Well since I can't seem to find much to blog about sports cards I present to you some more mini-figures.

It just so happens that the Fred Meyers I go to has their toy section right next to the doors I like to go in. Coincidence? Maybe.  Anyway, I was walking through the Lego aisle because I'm sure that some time I'll find the Doc Ock/Spiderman set, but I did see that they had gotten in 3 or 4 cases of mini figures series 7.  This is well after Series 8 has already come out.  Anyways I didn't have very many Series 7 so I picked a few packs up. And luckily I needed all three.

First up we have the Hippy.

I ended up with a couple extra flowers for some reason.

Next we have Tarzan, or a Tarzan like guy.  He comes with two knives and a chimp.

And finally the cooler of the three, the Daredevil.
The Daredevil comes with two faces. Smiling and...
aghast or scared or something.
Here's what he looks like with his helmet on.
Nice detailing on the to of the helmet too.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Upper Deck has an exciting opportunity for me!!

So I get this email from Upper Deck the other day. I apologize for the gray that's the way the email came to me and it's kinda hard to read.

Upper Deck is pleased to introduce a new way for you to earn exclusive Upper Deck trading cards.Email not displaying correctly?
Click here to view online.
Find out how to earn exclusive Upper Deck trading cards


Introducing The Dynamics ePlate™

Upper Deck is pleased to introduce a new way for you to earn exclusive Upper Deck trading cards. The Dynamics ePlate™ credit card device is the next generation of credit card that offers a revolutionary new platform, where you can choose your bonus experience right at the time of purchase.
Upper Deck’s experience™ application offers virtual trading cards sent instantly to your phone, tablet, or PC every time you make a purchase. Virtual cards can also be purchased or traded with your friends, and once a virtual card set is completed an exclusive UD Infinite card pack corresponding to your completed digital sport card set will be mailed to you. UD Infinite trading cards will only be available to ePlate™ credit card device users, and will include exciting randomly inserted autograph cards of sports legends such as: LeBron James, Tiger Woods and Joe Namath.
For the first time ever, Upper Deck is giving collectors the chance to collect every time they go shopping with both digital and physical trading cards. With the opportunity to pull autographed cards of some of the greatest athletes of all-time, this is a credit card every sports fan will want to make sure they are carrying!
The ePlate™ credit card device offers the freedom to select your choice of 2 bonus experiences at any given time, just by pushing one of the two battery powered buttons that light up your card.
You can learn more about the Dynamics ePlate™ credit card device or apply online at:
Upper Deck is excited to share the news of this revolutionary new partnership with our collectors. Look for additional news about the Dynamics ePlate™ credit card device and exclusive cards in the near future.
Upper Deck


UD Infinite Base Cards

Earn digital and physical trading cards with Dynamics ePlate Rewards.


UD Infinite Signature Cards

Earn exclusive signature cards from the greatest athletes of all-time.

It's nice to see Upper Deck hasn't quite given up the ghost just yet.  I keep waiting to hear that Upper Deck has sued itself out of existence.  Anyways, I got this email in one of my junk accounts I have specifically to use when I sign up for stuff  I don't want to use my regular email for.  A was about to quickly press the delete button since I need another credit card like, well lets just say I don't need another credit card, but then curiosity got the better of me and I wanted to see exactly how big of gimmick this really is....or lets see if the ePlate Upper Deck credit card is right for you!

First off for the right to use this credit card that has not one, but two LED lights, the annual fee is $99.  Still there?  OK second the Dynamics, Inc ePlate credit card has lots of different experiences you can use with it for various rewards, but we are going to concentrate on the Upper Deck angle.

So the basic premise is you set up you account with experiences corresponding to the two buttons on the card.  When you make a purchase you choose which experience you would like your purchase to contribute to.  For the Upper Deck experience you get a digital trading card, Topps Town anyone?, for every $10 you spend.  You choose your sport. You can get digital trading cards from Football, Basketball, or Golf.  If you collect all 250 cards in your sport you get a redemption for a foil pack of exclusive infinite trading cards.  What you don't want to have to spend $2500 for 250 cards? Which it never says you won't get the same card twice. You can opt to add a $1.50 to any purchase and you get 7 digital, ie not real, trading cards added to your account.  There are some big names in the Infinite set and possibly you might even get an autograph card, but don't hold your breath.

I'm still wondering who would want this card really.  Maybe I have too much common sense.  I mean yes I have an airlines credit card that I pay an annual fee for, but I get airline miles that I get to buy airplane tickets with.  But a few things bother me with this credit card.  First the rewards.  Digital cards aren't worth anything. They never state how many cards you get in this exclusive foil pack and they don't have odds for getting an autograph either.  Second,  if you use this card exclusively as your primary credit card hitting that $2500 mark probably wouldn't be too hard, but who knows if you'll get all 250 different cards.  UD says there will be a trading forum where you can trade for the cards you need too. Third the $1.50 add on seems like such an obvious money grab, plus to get all 250 cards would require at least 36 seven card digital packs or about $53 bucks.  Too me this just seems like a joke of a rewards program and really just a gimmick.  If Upper Deck really wanted to do a credit card it would have been better to have no annual fee, get that sweet kick back for sponsoring the credit card and offer rewards points that could be redeemed at on online store for lots of stuff, like cards or memorabilia, instead of some silly digital card collecting scheme.

Just my two cents.

cb out

Monday, November 26, 2012

Lego Lord of the Rings - Gandalf Arrives 9469

I was picking up a perscription at the local Fred Meyers and happen to walk through the Lego aisle and noticed that all the Lord of the Rings sets were on sale.  And I've had my eye on this one small set for sometime.

I really like these little sets and the fact that you get two mini-figures of probably the most desirable characters from Lord of the Rings is a big plus.

First up we have Frodo.  He comes with a big book.  The book can snap shut but it puts a lot of stress on the plastic joints and after I only closed it once it looked like it might come apart.
Frodo comes with two faces. This worried looked and....
There's also some nice detailing on the back of the body.

Next up is Gandalf the Grey.  Gandalf comes with only one face, which probably all you need since most of his face is covered by his beard.
There is also some nice detailing on Gandalf's body, but it's covered up by his cape.

You also get one brown horse with the cart.  You can take the middle portion out and have your mini ride in the center or just on top.

Here is the horse and cart.  In the back is a backpack and barrel.  The backpack contains a letter and the barrel is suppose to be full of fireworks.

And there you go.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

What'll I be doing on Black Friday???

First off Happy Pre-Thanksgiving everybody. I'm not sure if I'll get around to blogging this weekend.  But I do have a 4 day weekend which is pretty sweet.  My wife on the other hand has to work which is a bummer for her, but a boon for me.  I plan on puttering around the house doing stuff, but I will not be out with the masses.  You can keep your 100 dollar TVs and 4 dollar George Foreman Grills, no thank you. The last place I would want to be on Friday is at a retail store.

I will however be taking advantage of Check Out My Cards black Friday deals.  

While I don't make a lot of purchase from COMC, the deals on the site on Black Friday are always pretty good and this year they are even better. You check out all the details here.  I think the one I'm most excited about is the free shipping!  Plus they are giving you 10 cent for every card bought and shipped on Black Friday.  I think I'm going to have a fun time picking up deals for my set needs and PC's.

Have a fun and safe weekend everybody.

cb out

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

TTM Success Kayla Harrison Olympic Judo Gold Medalist

I sent to Kayla Harrison, American Olympic Judo Gold Medalist, back in October when I sent to Misty May-Trenor and Richard Petty.  Just got this back yesterday afternoon.  

For all the bitching I do about Topps there is sometimes when Topps gets it oh so right and their Olympic card set this year is one of those times.  And I know that there is an official autograph set, but these cards are great for TTM's and I know there are a few other people out there working on the set.

I was lucky enough to have the gold foil parallel card for Kayla.  So I sent that along with a nice letter and SASE.   She was nice enough to send one of her own cards as well.  It took me a second to figure out what the other stuff was under her name.  It's the Olympic rings and the word Champ.

TTM Stats
Date Sent: 10/10/12
Date Recieved 11/19/12

Address used:
Kayla Harrison
19 New Salem Street 
Wakefield, MA 01880

Thanks Kayla!!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Your invited to join the Collector's Crack One Star Club

Because you deserve it.
First off let me thank Fuji from The Chronicles of Fuji.  He posted somewhere on someone elses rant about Topps 5 Star with the idea that Topps should have started a one star club for those of us mortal card collectors.  Screw Topps.  I'm starting my own one star club.

Your probably asking yourself how do I become a member of this awesome new club and what do I get?

Well first if you collect anything from anywhere you're already a member.  Don't want to be a member that's ok too, you can opt out at anytime.  At no time are you to write an essay for me to read, however feel free to post something on your blog, if you have one, or comment on something I post.  Second you don't have to spend anything to be a member and I sure as hell don't want you to keep receipts, they're evidence, burn those suckers before the wife sees them!!  I do not want references from you local LCS, but if you do have a local LCS that you love make sure you tell the owner you appreciate his business and all the enabling he does for your addiction.  And most importantly you may bash or praise any and all card manufactures and their products.  

How much does this awesome club cost?  $750 a year, I know it's a little steep, but thanks to a large contribution from the Yount Collector, you really should all be followers over there and here if your not already, dues are waived for the first 75 years and then you get the free senior lifetime membership.

What do you get for being a member?  You get to download this awesome membership card.  You get to bitch about whatever you want.  You get to collect whatever sport, set, team, or player you like.  You can enjoy the efforts of the entire blogosphere about the hobby(s)  you enjoy.  You get to participate in contests, discussions, and trades with your fellow hobby enthusiasts. Pretty much everything you enjoyed before this extremely inclusive club, but now with a cool membership card.

We accept anybody and everybody. So come as you are.

Now that you've passed the extensive interview process feel free to get on with your life.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Why is it all I want is a Twinkie now??!!??

I'd been following this story since it was first announce last week even though I haven't bought a Hostess product in a very long time.  I've been seeing lots of sports card related posts about Hostess cards, I'll probably have one too.  Its very likely the brand will continue though as Hostess sells off it's brands and factories, but a sad day in America.  Blame who you want the Unions, the company, those damn stinky hippies with their health food revolution, but Hostess as we know it is still gone.

I guess the Zombie Apocolypse can't be far behind.
Luckily Snoballs have a shelf life of 50 years.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Holy Crap Wax Heaven is Back

If you've been in the blogging world a few years you may remember Mario Alejandro's Wax Heaven. Sadly Mario moved on years ago, then came back with Wax Morgue.  But now it looks like he's back with a new reincarnation of Wax Heaven.  Check it out!!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Display, protection, and storage for your Booklet cards, finally.

I can't remember if I ever sent the email I was composing in my head to UltraPro and BCW about getting off their asses and making a booklet card holder.  I realized that booklet cards were at the time fairly rare and new to the hobby a few years ago.  But now you find them in almost every product from entry level to super high end.  Well UltraPro finally has come through.  Available in two thickness (185 and 187mm) these guys will run you about 10 bucks a piece right now.  At least the ones I've found online.  I have yet to see these at my hobby shops, but I'll probably pick a couple up for the few booklet cards I have in my collection.

You can see product information on UltraPro's website here.  BCW or anyone else didn't have anything comparable on their websites.

1963 Topps Project - This is a big one.

It's been awhile since I did a 1963 Topps Project post.  And that's because I hadn't acquired any new 63's in a while.  So on a slow day I was pursuing what ebay had to offer and ended up picking up a lot of LA Angels  in EXMT condition for under a buck a card delivered.  And then I got a bug up my butt and decided to look at picking up one of the bigger cards in the set and one of my favorite players of all time.  

#390 "Hammerin" Hank Aaron

What's not to love about a vintage Hank Aaron card.  Hank entered the Hall of Fame in 1982 with 98% of the vote.  Hank amassed 755 home runs, 3771 hits, 2297 RBIs, and had  life time batting average of .305!

Hank was a 21 time all-star, almost every year he played, won a World Series Ring in 1957,  3 time Gold Glove winner, 2 time batting champion, 4 time home run champion, was the 1957 NL MVP, and had 17 consecutive seasons with 150 hits or more.  Whew.

Sure the card is off center and the corners aren't razor sharp. This is still a high grade copy of a living legend, and I got it for a steal.  A great addition to the set and to my collection as a whole.


Sunday, November 11, 2012

My McEnroe comes in!!

You may not remember this one. Hell I had pretty much forgot about this as well.  I had some really good luck last year with Allen and Ginter.  In the last box I opened I ended up pulling a McEnroe auto redemption.  I was torn with selling the redemption or redeeming it and waiting for the card.  I ended up redeeming it and well then I had to wait and wait and wait.  I got the usual Topps email saying sorry that it was over due.  I also saw that Johnny Mac had another autographed card in this years A&G and it wasn't a redemption.  OK I thought my 2011 is on the way.  And then I got to wait some more.  Well when I got home from work on Thursday I had a nice post office notification that I had a certified envelope at the post office.  I wasn't sure what it could be.  I'll be honest I did think that this might be my long lost McEnroe redemption, but I was prepared for it to be something not nearly as exciting.  Well when I finally got the Tristar fulfillment envelope in my grubby little hands I knew.  Almost a year and a half later I finally got my card.

It'll go nice with that McEnroe relic card I pulled from a box of this years A&G.  Thanks Topps finally.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

TTM Success Jordy Nelson!!

I had sent to Jordy way back in September.  I had meant to send to him when I did a big Packers mailing in May, but for some reason didn't have any single base card doubles to send.

 If you read regularly you know I'm a huge Jordy Nelson fan.  I'm guessing he's had a little time to answer some fan mail while recouping his hamstring.  Either way I'm super thrilled with this return and can't wait to see him on the field again.

I sent Jordy two of his 2012 Topps Football cards.  One for me and one for my brother who's also a big Jordy fan.

TTM Stats
Jordy Nelson
c/o Green Bay Packers
1265 Lombardi Ave
Green Bay, WI 54304

Date Sent 9/8/12
Date Received 11/10/12

Thanks Jordy! Get better soon!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Chips and Salsa, Vegas style!

Over the years I've made several forays to Las Vegas. Mainly for poker tournaments.  The wife and I usually stay downtown, the casinos are smaller, cheaper, and everything is within walking distance, but we usually take a trip down to the strip to enjoy a show or just walk around.  That's how I got most of these chips. I surly did not stay at each casino and gamble at each one.

The Orleans was the exception though.  When I went down to Vegas 3 of the 4 trips were for World Tavern Poker. Two of the opens were held at Binion's and have been ever since, but one year they had a conflict and had to book in another hotel. That was the Orleans. I have to say though even though the Orleans was off strip it was still really nice.  They also had a 16 screen movie theater and 70 lane bowling alley in the hotel, as well as, having a poker room that literally had a table with just about every kind of poker going on.

Main Street Station was know more for it's buffets than gambling and this was off the beaten path in downtown LV.

Ah, Binions. The casino that made Texas Hold'em famous.  I've played a lot of poker at Binion's.

Fitz's. I really liked playing poker in Fitzgeralds small poker room. They had really cheap buy-ins and rebuys.

Last time I was down in Vegas which was about 2009, the Four Queens had just bought Binion's.

The Fremont was the first place I ever stayed in Vegas.  I met my brother and mom down there and had a blast.
Another classic downtown establishment.

I had a buddy that loved to play roulette at the Las Vegas Club and he won, a lot. As a matter of fact he won so much they kicked him out.

And down at the end of the block we have the Plaza. I use to love playing there tournaments, but sadly when I last went back they had totally taken out their poker room.

Now down to the strip.
For the most part the Casinos on the strip are huge, incredible eye candy.  But there are a few little hole in the walls too.  Like this one.
I remember that they had Fat Elvis, that's what he was billed as, singing on stage.

Of course the Bellagio is remembered best for the Ocean's 11 remakes, but the dancing fountain is a pretty incredible show.

Another funny Vegas story. Right before I went down to Vegas for the last time in 2009 with my wife, she had just gone down there for a conference for work.  She stayed at Caesars Palace and found a Pussycat Doll's themed slot machine that she actually made money on. While we were walking around she wanted to go find the machine. So we did and after about 5 minutes I made her walk away with 50 bucks profit.

The Iconic Flamingo.

Ah the late Sahara.  The Sahara shut it's doors last year. This is the only chip I have from a dead casino.

As I was looking through my collection I noticed I'm missing a few notables. Like New York, New York, Circus Circus and the Stratosphere.  I have a few other collections I'm planning on sharing as well.