Thursday, March 7, 2013
Buying Cards from Geoffrey
Yeah, yeah, terrible image. 'cept sparkle cards look really sparkly at night.
This card was acquired within just a few feet of a My Little Pony collector's tin, so naturally tonight's purchase was jammed with sparkly goodness. Eric Hosmer RC was also there among the diamond parallels, plus a Cognac Sandy Koufax - a double no less!
But who's Geoffrey? Get with it, card collector:
If you want crazy Purple baseball cards, you must learn to recognize the Toys R Us mascot. You would think he would get his own super short print in the Opening Day set eventually.
It seems that I am Chasing® a certain Rookie Card™ of a fishy player that came out in the 2011 Topps Update set. I do not want to just buy one, what kind of collector would that make? Topps would be so disappointed in me. Plus, I figure extra Updates will make the best trade bait to finish out the rest of my '11 needs, though it will be a good two months or so before I am reunited with my '11 cards and I can type in a list of haves and needs for you dear readers.
But it seems the '11 Topps Updates are disappearing at a rapid clip from the stores. There is far more 2010 left on the shelves at the out-of-the-way 'marts I have been visiting, most of which have exactly zero '11 Update left. One friendly LCS I visited last week had even doubled their pack price of '11 Update up to $4. Any listing of them you can Googlebay tends to include the letters RC along side the name of a certain soooo terribly underpaid player/wage-slave from California or Anaheim or Los Angeles or whatever the heck town he plays in these days. It'z all zzzz out there for me; it'z like their games start in extra inningz or somethin'.
The whole deal almost has me thinking It's A Conspiracy! This is because during my fruitless quest for some purple cards at Toys R Us back on Spring Training Opening Day, I asked the clerk when they might be restocking those special $3 packs with the 3 purple parallels. This about made the store's wheels fall off. But in retail, everyone aims to please, and they were determined to figure out my baseball cardnerd question no matter what. It turns out that baseball cards are handled by an outside vendor, not by T-R-Us employees, and they thus could not predict when he would bring back the special purple packs. And that vendor's name had the word "Beckett" in it. Ha! No wonder I had struck out on the purples! They are so fricking cool looking this year the insider dude kept them all!
No, I don't really think that is true. The last thing anyone drawing a paycheck with the word 'Beckett' on it probably wants to see when they get home from work is a baseball card.
And if it was true, why would that store have had a bunch of '11 Update sitting there? Surely the baseball card market savants wouldn't let them just sit there gathering Yu-Gi-Oh dust any more, when there just might be Angelfish gold inside. But I had Purple-on-the-brain right then and I left them in their sad dust. The 2010s were marked down, maybe I could just wait it out, I thought then.
Fast-forward a fortnight or so (do you know how many days are in a fortnight? I bet you don't either), and I am back in a Cards-R-Me store and there is that Jeter-Pujols-Suzuki triptych running towards me from a blaster box. Plus some 2013 purple packs, and even a 2012 Series One, as I was babbling about the other night.
But, alas, there was no all-time all-fish RC in there. FF a bit more to tonight, when I have a long drive crossing state lines to help out a client....which would lead me right past another big yellow giraffe to pillage.
It seems that us card addicts aren't too fond of paying extra for our "needs". So ole Geoffrey moves the Topps product pretty slowly - I could have acquired 2006 or 2007 cello packs, if I hadn't drawn a line at 2010, beyond which I will not go back. And right now there is a 20% off sale on sports cards, making a 3-purple pack only $2.39 each - only 80¢ a card! Yeah, yeah, you get a regular pack of regular '13 cards too, but I have all of those. I need more Purple.
And tonight, the long-necked maestro of disposable income (I'm running out of toy store similes), had a special treat for me - 3 '11 Update rack packs. Though I had been developing a fondness for the "Fat Pack", chronicled here recently, I also admire the "rack pack". So much less wasteful packaging than the "blaster", and I have way more useless patch cards than I will ever need. Blasters are for working on your color parallel set, in my mind at least, and I am not clear if '11 Update even had color parallels?
So there it was - 216 more chances to get that darn Hey Mikey, They Really Like You card. At which I totally FAILed once again.
But Topps has a way of rewarding it's steady-eddies. And the poorly shot image above was perhaps the best pull so far, with bunches of random purples to peruse yet to go, and at least one more blog post, not to mention my eventual feed-me-purple-baseball-cards trade beggings.
A 2011 'Update Anthony Rizzo "Hope Diamond" RC parallel.
No, you nuts, I did not check the serial # to see if it was sufficiently low or matched his uni # to make you really go nuts. But I will of course.
So what will I do with that treasure? I dunno. I suspect it will get me to try and tune in a bit more WGN this summer.
And I will probably never plumb the mystery of the name of this bunch of parallels. They seem to be worth up to a couple Andrew Jacksons, rather than a couple George Washingtons, like most "hits" we drool over, but they ain't worth nowhere near (holy triple negative sports-quote-like construction!) what the Hope Diamond is worth. And the Hope Diamond is blue because it is full of Boron. And here we spend too much time defending baseball cards from being boring.