Saturday, July 11, 2020

VOTE FOR A CRACKED BAT !

Today begins a months' long journey to Election Day, Tuesday November 4th.  My previous post shared an overview of what you can expect to find in the Cracked Bat Ballot Box. It's possible you won't like the item offered. I encourage you to vote for the candidate you hate least - you know, the lesser of two evils. There will be fun items offered - new, old and...vintage.  More to like or love than not! I will track your votes with the help of a nonpartisan assistant. Your names will be entered into the final drawing, equivalent to the number of times you voted.

Voting opportunities may be a standalone post or found within one of my outlandishly creative ventures.  Basic rules will be available each time as a reminder:



I apologize in advance, for the questionable quality of these shots taken with my 5 year old phone. With election proceeds, I'm purchasing a high-end smart phone with elaborate camera capabilities. Oh wait... I'm not making one RED cent during this election! And now, without further ado, here are your first Cracked Bat Candidates:


A)  1987 SPORTFLICS TEAM PREVIEW SET
26 cards plus 26 team logo/trivia minis.  This set contains the only 1987 MLB card featuring Tom Glavine.  Checklist here.


CANDIDATE A


B) 1988 TOPPS GLOSSY SEND-INS
60 card set. Available through mail-in offer. Contains several HOFers.  Checklist here.


CANDIDATE B

Both are common oddball sets from the 80s but aren't often seen. Sportflics was somewhat unique in its time. Topps Glossy contains many stars and fan favorites. Take a look at the checklist links and choose your candidate wisely. The loser of this round may or may not, be seen again.  The winner goes into the Ballot Box!  Thank you for being loyal to this blog. Let the voting begin!

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Also in my previous post , I shared my fireworks display. A friend filmed my short but fun finale from 4th of July evening. She didn't turn her phone for landscape viewing. Her husband is the pyro who assisted me. Next year, we are fusing the cakes together for better timing. We had a blast!



Saturday, July 4, 2020

A Cracked Bat Ballot Box: Where Your Vote Counts!




I hate what has become of modern politics. No matter how great you believe your candidate to be, he or she is still quite human. Politicians aren't perfect and many, deeply flawed.  As this election year ramps up, we will hear a lot of ugliness, and maybe some debate. Tuesday, November 4th won't get here quickly enough for many of us.  To take some focus off our political frustrations, I thought it might be fun to have a Collector's Choice election!


PRE-SHOW FUN

There will be two candidates to choose from each time A.C.B.B.B. presents a new election opportunity. It's entirely possible you won't like either candidate. Isn't that just like politics? If you want your vote to count, you will be forced to choose. Only one vote allowed per person per post. Each post will be open for at least two days.  Your comment to choose "a" or "b" is your vote.  I will randomly close voting on each post by commenting on said post. At that time, votes will be tallied. The winning item of that round will be placed into the ballot box. Each voter is added to voter registration. With the assistance of a non-partisan friend, I'll track voters and their choices with a spreadsheet. Please do not share a link on Twitter, Facebook, any blog, Instagram, Wet Noodle or any other form of social media. You are giving your vote away by doing so. I most want to see a regular reader win this box.




Mail in votes are allowed. Any trades RECEIVED between July 5th  and Nov 4th, Election Day count! An additional vote will be added to your vote totals. Please keep in mind, you are trusting your vote to the postal service. Any envelope or package MUST be in my mailbox no later than Tuesday, November 4th.

TRUST ABE

Our US Territories {including American Samoa, Puerto Rico, Guam, US Virgin and Northern Mariana Islands} have no congressional representation and cannot vote in the official US election. These residents not allowed to vote in the A.C.B.B.B. primaries. Disappointing for me since so many of my readers live in these remote locations. Although I cannot afford the expense of shipping to Canada or overseas, I would like to extend the opportunity to all my Canadian and overseas friends to vote in the primaries. In other words, foreign tampering with election results is allowed. Those votes won't be added to the final tallies but they can lobby for the item they'd like most to see win.




Let's fill the ballot box! On the evening of November 4th, each voter will be entered into the Great Randomizer the appropriate number of times. This number is equal to how many times you voted or sent trade mail. The list will be randomized several times - number to be announced prior to the event.  Our first place winner will take home the ballot box, filled with every winning item from the primaries! The first round of primaries will be live next Saturday.

What? You wanna know what kind of stuff is going into the box? I am 'cleaning house' so right now, I don't even know. There may be vintage cards. Small sets. Packs. Books. Baseballs. A blaster. Perhaps other sports as well. Whatever it takes to fill a medium to large flat rate priority box to capacity! I'm getting my money's worth out of shipping costs! Since you choose the contents, it won't be junk!

HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY!!!!

As you may have discerned from the photos, my July 4th evening is planned. I'll be outside, sharing loud works of fire with friends. It will be a noisy night but not at the same decibel levels an ear-drum-shattering evening with Kiss produced at Tiger Stadium.



Monday, June 29, 2020

Angelic Trade and a Collective Hoarding

I don't even want to know what my mail carrier thinks with every delivery. She's seen a lot of pick pocket envelopes in the last three months and twice as much incoming mail for...ME. Perhaps she thinks I'm popular? A shopaholic?  None of these goodies were addressed to 'current resident.'

Angels' man, Texas Tom, sent a fun envelope filled with sticker needs, Phillies' Dutch and Harpo and a glowing group of stars!  All but Harpo were from my wantlist, always appreciated! The Harp was part of a pack bust. I mentioned liking the card and voila!! He's a gracious fellow.



Sharply designed

Love the dirty throwback!



Those crazy 90s! Fun cards! My dilemma - put them in the fun binder, or with the 1993 Fun Pack set build which is coming along, not. Twenty seven years later, I still need a hundred cards. Glow Stars still needed:


Thanks for the help, Tom! Come back next month 'n' pick my pockets!

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If you follow Greg at The Collective Mind, perhaps you've read several of his 'Dispersing the Hoard' posts. Greg bought a collection with an amazing card assortment spanning the late 90s through 2006 or so. These were up for trade, or sale if you were unable to assist with his want list. I couldn't lend a hand there but was happy to free up some space in those boxes! I've done this three times now and am still tempted to return and pick a little more. Many of the available cards were from "current player sets" of the day. I'm drawn to the retired or deceased fellows. Pardon the dark humor but as I've said more than once, 'the only good Yankees are dead Yankees.'  For example:

From 2004 UD Yankee Classics. Upper Deck had it going on!

I received 23 cards from 2004 UD Timeless Teams, a set too large for me to tackle! I pick these cards up when I can.




Also from 2004 and Upper Deck - Sweet Spot Classics! This 60 card batch knocked a lot off my want list. I was crazy excited to see these weren't claimed!


All that remains of my list

The first dead  and old guys set I ever attempted was 2001 Upper Deck Hall of Famer. I finished the base set with one box bust back in the day. The base card design is simple, and I think - stunning! I took every card he had to divide among my player collections. You may see the extras pop up on pick pockets one day.


Subsets are also unique, perhaps a bit busy but colorful. These include Origins of the Game, Hall of Records and National Pastime.






As for the insert sets, I'm still trying to finish three:



Greg had a few for me:



I don't know too many baseball collectors who are happy to see UD gone from the hobby. 'Goodwin Champions' makes me a little sick every time I spy one in a dime box. Awfullllllllll.  Looking at the cards I chose from the Hoard, it's obvious UD was a heavy part of my early collecting history.

Not to knock Topps but I wasn't into the white borders and picket fences back then. There are a few sets  I've come across in recent years that had I still been collecting after 2002, I would've forked over the dough for them. 2003 Fan Favorites would be one - and 28 cards from Greg was enough to whet my appetite for more.



I hope Greg is able to find a home for his remaining hoard. I'm elated to add all of these to my collection. I won't share the cost but to say cheap cheap cheap. It was as good as any card show could've been. We've all missed them during the pandemic. I did pick up cards from Cracker Jack and old school Elite to share around the community. I'm not always  thinking of myself.

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

A Little Florida Sunshine

I'm giving myself a pat on the back today.  By now, I've usually disappeared for a few months. I've been busy outdoors which stretches the time between posts.  Although I'd like to blog daily, every 7 - 10 days is more realistic. Unfortunately, that's not enough time to keep up with shares. These past couple of months have brought some larger trades my way. I try to post in order of receipt. As of now, we are all the way up to APRIL.  And what did April bring? A nice little box from Florida filled with over 200 cards! A nice assortment for player collections and miscellaneous set helps were included.


I've been trying to complete 1997 SP since ...1997.  I still need five cards.  Yeah, I should just buy them but that takes the fun out of begging.


1994 Donruss MVPs are new to my want list. While going through my collection, I discovered all of 94 Donruss completed but for this 28 card insert set. Well why the heck not? I'm starting this set from scratch. Including Grace and Bagwell, I own three. The Azocar is one of the fun cards you see floating around the blogs. I have a couple of these so this one will go to the pick pocket box.  Finding 89ers in a trade package is like a hug from home.  I'll always be an Okie.

I still have room in my heart for Altuve. All six of these cards were on my wantlist:


Caminitis from 1998 Tek and Stadium Club - both new to me:


The scan doesn't reflect the shiny refractive glow of Lou and his neighbor Ty.  Lou is a 2010 wrapper redemption. Cobb may be even more rare. He's from a 25 card set found only in 2019 Topps factory sets - Chrome Greatest Card Reprints Refractors - actually one of the few reprints I was chasing.

I mentioned 200+ cards. Most were for another impulsive set build, one I've toyed with for years. I finally committed to the 396 card hunt, starting from scratch.  There were 200 1995 Topps Cyberstats in that package! I've enjoyed the foil fronts for years. Topps made some excellent photo choices in 1995.




Crazy generous, wouldn't you say? The young man who sent these cards dabbles a bit in Topps cards that never were.  Jeremy included a few of his creations which fit perfectly into my collection.


What does one send in return for his generosity? Well, Jeremy is from Michigan and still collects his Tigers. I always have extra. He lives  in Florida and collects the Rays. We ALL have those on hand!!!

Jeremy also posted nine cards on his blog awhile back; first come, first pick. In my greed, I chose two, both for set builds. 2000 Pacific Gold Crown Die Cuts are some of the best-looking cards I own from that decade. I still need two - Ripken and Piazza.  2018 Topps Independence Day is by far my favorite Topps Independence parallel. I can't afford to chase the whole set but pickup cards when I can. This was a sweet card to chance upon!



I can't say thanks enough to Jeremy. It was our first trade. It took me a month or so to reciprocate but was happy to send him cards from his wantlist as well!

July 4th is creeping up quickly. I still have a few more things I'd like to do outside before my party. Fireworks have been purchased but I cannot find anyone selling rain. It's been unusually hot and dry this month. No rain = no fireworks. I'm always a little bummed during a dry spell anyway. All my little creatures have no water. I saw two wild turkeys with their little chicks tonight, strolling across my backyard, along with several bunnies. I wonder what they'll be drinking. Perhaps next year, I'll put in a fountain or shallow pond of some sort. It would make me feel better. Nature is out of my control. Most things are. 

Don't forget - on July 4th, this blog is presenting something special for the upcoming election season.  What electoral college? Your vote actually counts! Making politics great again!

Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Not Your Average, Arbitrary Post

Arbitrary: random, erratic, unpredictable. Nothing average there. The same is true for the package I received in April from Brian, who claims to be highly subjective and completely arbitrary.    He's been a steady blogger for over five years. It's been awhile since we swapped cards. He made up for lost time quickly.  Not only cards but a couple of packs were included.

2000 UPPER DECK VICTORY:

BASE

INSERTS



2019-20 OPC GLOSSY


I'd forgotten how colorful the Victory release is. I don't recall ever buying a pack. OPC was my first hockey pack bust. I didn't land any Blackhawks but it was still fun.  Now comes the hard part.  Brian packed so much into his efforts, I don't know what to share.

A Topps Living Set online exclusive and 2019 Stadium Club Fulmer #d/25, both fairly rare cards. Rare is subjective in terms of hobby scarcity. I'd say yes, a 25 card print run is rare enough. The value = arbitrary.



2019 Stadium Club from my wantlist. Breathtaking beauties and quite possibly my favorite baseball cards in this post.



Altuves:



Springer:


Oh there's more. Tigers found their way into the envelope. They don't call me a cat lady for nuttin':




2012 TOPPS #/210 



SHINERS


1967 AND 1962 TOPPS
There have been more than a few Free Card Friday's on Brian's blog. I've missed out on many of these freebies in the community. The past weeks have been difficult for most of us. These giveaways bring good vibes and smiles to all their recipients. Among my choices were bat racks and mascots!


CHECK OUT FRANK'S PHONES


LOVE THIS GRACE!




Before you get your get your feathers ruffled, I don't believe the pope is mascot to the Catholic faith. I have great respect for the Roman Catholic church. Someone else had chosen this card right before my claims. I commented that I wanted to pick the pope. I do like this card. It will go nicely with my pitching nun.

My favorite card in the package from Brian isn't baseball but an older milk carton card. I could find nothing anywhere on this one; not TCDB, Beckett or the internet in general.

GOT ABE?

I wonder what Abe would say about the times we are living in right now. His record on race wasn't perfect but in his wisdom he knew this country would split if slavery continued. Here we are 150 plus years later. Slavery abolished, thank God, and finally desegregation.  But how far have we come? Why not attempt to understand the challenges blacks can often face? Their lives do matter. No one is saying all lives don't matter. Would any white person wish they'd been born black?  I think most of us would say "not me". This all hit home a few days ago, right here in small town Michigan, not Detroit, in my predominately white town with its perfect yards and touristy shops. There is a locally famous rock in a prominent location upon which folks leave greetings for birthdays, graduations, anniversaries and sometimes memorials. Not this time:


ARTICLE LINK HERE

In 2020? We are coming out of a country-wide lock-down. Folks are hot and agitated but this is more than a skin-deep ugliness.  Absolutely unacceptable.  My friends, you know I don't get political. This blog is a happy place. This is the first time I've written more than a line or two about serious issues we face as a country and frankly as people. Where is empathy?



I can tell you my little town came together to repaint that rock. Groups of people have been standing with it all day long, in a show of solidarity with those who painted the original message. Volunteers are taking turns sitting with the rock all night too, to ensure the message remains unchanged.

Sorry for the rant. I felt the need to put my voice into the universe. Thanks for sticking with me, if you did.