Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Not The Same

*gets up very early, before the rise of dawn for no reason but decides to have a reason for it and starts to blog. It's going to be a three cupper today*

I know I am not alone when it comes to saying life has changed so much since my youth. 

(picture a grumpy old man at 37 shaking his stick at the kids on his lawn and goes to reach for a hose to spray them away)

  • There are no more Saturday Morning Cartoon countdown as cartoons are always available. I remember having Saturday's off from school and living for a bowl of Cap'N Crunch and a block of cartoons on ABC and CBS
  • Outside fun has become a thing of the past with video games. I lived outside in my youth and never got bored. I used to see commercials for water guns and Nerf items to play with your friends but those have cut back to more video game related commercials basically forcing the youth of today to be inside.
  • Counting down to the holiday specials on TV is no longer needed as most are easily available on DVD, get played more than once (they used to get played once and that was it) and some just aren't showed anymore at all. Remember the California Raisins Christmas special? Yeah most don't even know what that is today. I used to countdown to those specials and would write on a calendar when they would come on and would make sure I was ready to watch those. Now they play Rudolph and Frosty two to three times and some don't even come on TV anymore.
  • No more video rental stores as you can access any movie you want to watch through different devices. One of my favorite things to do on a Friday night was going with my parents to go pick out movies. My mother would get the five out of the seven picked but my sister was able to pick one (most of the time it was Little Mermaid) and I would get one as well. It was a fun family trip.
  • Cool action figures and toys no longer exist. Have you seen the toys they make for kids today? Most need apps or are digital in some way and the ones that are made are cheap plastic that break way too quick. What happened?!
  • Leaning simple life skills in school is no longer offered, at least here. Instead of learning to live on your own you can learn how to use a digital 3D printer because that will help you in life when you are home alone and can't make a sandwich or do your own laundry.
  • Too many are offended and the world is simply a mess with subjects I won't even touch on as I wouldn't want to offend anyone or lose readers. It's better to keep my mouth quiet and simply say we had tougher skin in the 80's and 90's.
  • Reading Books have become a thing of the past. Most small bookstore don't exist anymore
  • Hobbies are not important anymore as devices keep you occupied in your free time
  • Board Games. I played a ton with my grandmother and still play them. It's especially fun when the family comes up around the holidays and plays as well, but overall, you don't see a lot of board games being played anymore. It's actually forced board game companies to combine device app aspects with board games. Just the other day I saw one for Tik Toc and I have also seen them for Memes too.
  • And now the latest thing because of Covid is the no magazine policy across doctor offices where they encourage you to stare at your phone more. I can almost see them never making another return again which is sad because that used to be the one thing you had in the waiting room to do. Now you just see people staring down at their phones.
This is a note inside of the eye doctors I recently visited which at the bottom states, "Please Enjoy Your Phone." Seems ironic that they want you to drain your eyes at a Eye doctors office but maybe that is part of the ploy. 
Insert thinking face emoji here.

It's not that magazines are really that popular anymore-or even the back of a shampoo or cereal box as well-or that I ever see anyone before Covid actually read anything but their phone but its the idea of them no longer being around that is bothersome.

Things just aren't the way they once were. Which by the way, were much better back then.

This concept goes for the hobby as well, especially when you are taking a look at the base cards.

*takes a sip, nope, chugs down the first cup. Pours the second and comes back to blog*

Base cards in the hobby are no longer tempting to chase. I still do just to find my favorite players but overall I don't chase base sets from today.

They are bland with no creativity. Not like they once were and yes, I am speaking of the 90's.

We had base cards printed on acetate, complete foil board, thick card stock, action packed photography, embossing, and my favorite, holograms.

*takes a sip and a trip back in time. I am taking you with me*

For those that have followed me awhile now, you would know my passion for hologram cards. Back in the late 90's Upper Deck created a set known as Spx that combined a thick micro-etched card stock with a hologram. They created this for multiple sports and I was on board.

I have been chasing all of the sets, inserts, autographs that have to do with the iconic Spx sets.

I have so far completed:
1996, 1997, 1998 Spx football base sets
1996 Spx racing
1997 Spx racing
1996 Spx hockey
1997 Spx baseball
1997-1998 Spx basketball
1996 Spx football Tribute cards and the Tribute autographs

And am close to these ones,
1997 Spx hockey (13 away)
1996 Spx baseball (13 away)
1996 Spx basketball (need just the MJ)
1996 Spx hockey Holoview Heroes (just a couple remain)
1998 Spx Football Steel (missing only 8) 

And now thanks to my friend @90sNicheFBCard I have...

1997-1998 basketball complete set!

This set features 50 cards full of stars and holographic awesomeness. I will let some of the cards do the talking......

That was

That was quite the experience..huh. I bet you are Googling them right now to find your own.

*takes another sip, tempted to finish cup two but decides to sip this one slower*

With this basketball set in hand, I am now only one card and one set away from having the basketball sets completed. My next goal is to finally chase down the MJ for the 1995-1996 set so I can finally say that one is complete. The last set, 1996-1997, is my favorite design of the three but with a Kobe rookie in the set it will be darn near impossible to ever own that one. Would have to be some major trade to pull that off.

Thanks to Bryan, @90sNicheFBCard, for the huge help in getting this one done.

*takes a sip before closing*

Now that I am done with today's card portion of the post, it got me to thinking. Maybe not having those magazines isn't a bad thing. Maybe you should be on your device more. Maybe you should have a cup of coffee in one hand and your device in another. If you haven't gotten to what I am hinting at yet, maybe your device while you are sitting there with your coffee should be called up to this blog for your reading material. There is quite a bit of content on here now, just sayin'. Of course sharing this blog with others in the room who see your fascination of coffee and cards wouldn't be a bad idea either.

Sunday, October 4, 2020

Hangin' With Donruss

*takes a sip of coffee on this brisk 38 degree morning. Yesterday's highs got into the 50's and today will be about that as well. Another sip to keep warm and realizing that the season is changing fast is needed*

It's game day Sunday for the Giants. This used to be a time of excitement for me but as this season has progressed the Giants have looked worse by the week and today face the LA Rams who have played well thus far. If the Giants can keep it within 10 points I would call that a win especially after losing last week by 20 to a practice squad 49er team.

Enough with the sadness, we get enough of that this year already, I am just glad I actually get to watch football.

Yesterday marked my year end BBQ where I use the grill for the last time before the weather gets any colder. It will be put away today for next year as it would be hard to grill on my deck full of snow.

With it being game day, I thought it would be fun to show off my break of 2020 Donruss football.

My father was able to grab two hangers for me and two for himself before it sold out. My first blaster, which I opened was embarrassingly bad so I won't show that. However, the one I gave my wife to open was pretty solid so we will do that one. Not that I mind showing off bad breaks, but I think today I want to focus on the positive.

*takes a sip, begins to rip*

Every Hanger Box of 2020 Donruss football comes with 50 cards. Each box also promises 4 Press Proof parallels and shots at autographs and relics.

The Donruss base card design has kinda stayed par for Donruss for some time now. Nothing new about it.

Other than players in new places. It is weird seeing Rivers in a Colts uni.

The base set has 350 cards with 50 rookie base and 50 Rated Rookies as well. I didn't find any Rated Rookies in my pack and the best rookie I found was the Giants first round pick offensive lineman.

Up next we find the 4 promised Press Proof parallels which are red.
Can't complain about any of these guys with Watson and Kelly leading the way.
Other parallels include, Aqueous Test, Season Stat Line /500, and Jersey Number /99
Press Proof Parallels Of Red, Silver /100, Silver Die-Cut /75, Gold /50, Gold Die-Cut /25, Black /10, and Black Die-Cut 1/1.
*takes a sip*
For me though, it's not about the base or the parallels or even the hits, I come to Donruss for the inserts/nostalgia and their shiny appeal.

Nostalgia Factor kicks it off here with the Donruss 90 design. I think this would have made a better base card design. Panini should had chosen a different Donruss design from the 90's to use for their base designs instead of using them for inserts.
40 cards with this design is what you would be chasing. I won't be as they left off the Giants from the checklist for it. How could you not at least make a Saquon one?!

Gridiron Kings with one of the NFL's best young players. There are 15 of these to collect.

I found it interesting that Panini added a Optic preview set to this. It feels un-needed but I always do enjoy a chromed card find. This one is a blue /99 parallel. Not the greatest player to pull but hey, it's still a rookie QB. Other parallels of these to find are Holo, Pink, Red & Green, Red #/99, Gold #/10.
There are 100 of these to chase with Rated Rookies and rookies included.
How can you have Donruss without Elite Series? YOU CAN'T!! There are 60 of them to collect split by rookies and veterans.
 Best card of the pack found here!

And second best card.

Not that Nick Chubb is that shabby either.

24 Highlights to collect

17 cards in the Retro Series to collect. This has a 90s appeal.

42 of The Rookies to Chase

Dominators another Donruss fan favorite is still in here with 40 cards to chase

And to finish my break off, what appears to be a 80s looking insert ends it with Action All Pros. There are 18 cards to collect.
*takes a sip before closing up this post. Honestly, that's a lie. I just finished up this cup and am brewing a second one. I have to use the Keurig today because this guy forgot again to grab a can of coffee from the grocery store the other day thinking that he already had one at home. You should never ever do that*

Donruss once again was an entertaining break. It gave me all the feels with the nostalgia and the shiny goodness. I do wished I could have pulled some better rookies-at least I got that Burrow insert-or some more PC cards, but I will take what I get and can always search for the other stuff another time. It's all apart of the hobby fun.

Friday, October 2, 2020

New Cardboard And Mug

*sits down with a new mug in hand, fresh pot of coffee and some pumpkins spice creamer to top it off. It's going to be a good day*

There are not many surprises in life, at least good ones, so soaking in the ones that come are fun. Some examples of fun surprises in life include, getting engaged, having a baby (especially if you don't find out what you are having ahead of time),birthday parties, those onion rings in your french fries from Burger King and the unexpected announcement you are getting a mail day.

That surprise recently hit me via Twitter from @SpartyHawkCache. He took note one day of a #CardsOverCoffee Tweet I had with a mug of fresh hot joe in it and said you need an upgraded mug.

So he sent me one of his mugs with his logo on it. I gotta admit I got a little giddy over my first hobby mug. I look forward to using this many times and think it would be fun if others had mugs as well especially bloggers. I could have a late night cup with a Night Owl mug or sitting in my card area with stacks everywhere sipping on a Too Many Verlanders mug or drinking an afternoon cup in October from a pink Collectin' Cutch mug. Hint, Hint to all of the bloggers out there reading this.

*takes a sip, begins to continue on*

I thought the mug alone was amazing, then he mentioned a second envelope would be coming and did a few days later. I had no idea what was within which made for one of those positive surprises I talked about above.

Inside of the bubbler was this hand written note. Every note ever sent to me I have kept and hope to put in a scrapbook some day.

The note informed me that some NY Giants are inside along with a few celebrity autos. I think he nailed this extra mail day. I also liked the kind words about the blog. This blog may not have the reach quite yet, but hopefully it will get there as many enjoy what I am doing here.

Behind the note was the card  portion of the mail day,

We start out with a Travis Rudolph autograph. I really wished he could have had more chances with the Giants as he blew up the preseason in 2017 but failed to make the roster completely and only had limited opportunities both with the Giants and Dolphins. He had 8 catches for 101 yards in his NFL Career and currently plays for Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the Canadian League. I wish him all of the best!

A few things about Evan Engram. One, he can't stay healthy. Two, he shows flashes of a Hall Of Fame Tight End but then doesn't and can't seem to live up to his potential and three, Coach McAdoo wanted the Giants to move up that year and draft some guy named Patrick Mahomes but instead the Giants sat back and went with Engram. This must be why I am a Mahomes fan and want to see Engram live up to those standards.
If this doesn't tell you much about the Giants as of recent, nothing will. They drafted Wayne Gallman in 2017 who showed he could possibly carry the load at running back in 2018 and then went and spent the second pick of the draft on Saquon Barkley. Nothing against Saquon and I was rooting that pick on, but looking back on it and the Giants passing on guys like Josh Allen, it stings now. Especially with Jones struggles and Saquon's injuries the last two seasons.

*takes a sip, takes a deep breath knowing how the Giants could have had Patrick Mahomes, takes another sip, takes another breath, sip, breath, continues on*

I gotta admit, I was chuckling to myself some when I got to the celebrity autos.

I love good humor but, he is a hobby celebrity so it is a win. I plan to keep those in my scrapbook with a few other hobby autographs I have.
Thanks for the mail day Marlin! Solid one all around and I appreciate your kindness.

*takes a sip with a smile, then decides not to end the post quite yet*

I know how much you guys enjoyed my last round of foliage pictures, so thought I would show some more on a short trip around town my wife and I took. We did this adventure before the heavy rains came because we knew that would be the end of the beautiful colored trees and honestly, it was.

The trip started out with finding this surprise painted on the road. I thought it was funny and posted it on Facebook and a day later.....

This was how it looked. Someone tried their best to blend it back in to the road. It actually stands out more now. Gotta love politics.

Now onto rest of the trip before I cause a political stir.


This was only some of the 30 or so pictures I took overall. I figured I didn't want to bore you guys too much with them, so a few pictures would do for this post.

The foliage has now passed and we are sitting in that weird spot where the trees look brown, leaves are on the ground everywhere and the wet smell of fall is here. At least there isn't any of that white stuff on the ground yet as I am not ready. But, we all know how 2020 has gone so it wouldn't surprise me one bit to see it early this year. 

That's one of those surprises you don't want.