Wednesday, March 20, 2013

So who's Polar Pete anyway?

Just "home" from a great face-to-face trading session with William from Foul Bunt. Always nice to meet a great baseball fan. I travel a lot for work, so I hope to meet some more baseball card bloggers someday. I'll sort out the results soon I hope. Can never get caught up with sorting baseball cards. Can you?

If you have been thinking about meeting up with some random blogger that is not too far from you, I suggest you get together and trade some cardboard. You'll be glad you did.

So I've been saving up an easy post for some night when I don't have much time to bloggle about some random thing I saw on a baseball card. This might make for a head-scratcher on the blogrolls where mostly just the header image shows, but I believe in credit where credit is due. Plus, after a great night of baseball cards, I think it's time to change gears a little.

When I was setting this blog up I scrolled through the photos on my laptop for something to use for a background shot, and found the one above. I stripped off the © Topps part of the card, cuz I wouldn't want anyone to think there was some legitimate connection between my babblings and that company from Duryea (how would you like to explain that name as your hometown?) or Brooklyn or The Great Cornfield Baseball Diamond In The Sky or wherever it is that Topps baseball cards wonderfully appear from. Ireland?

So now you know. But in what Topps product did a Polar Pete faux coupon appear in?

Naturally, it was this one:

I love Wacky Packages. I even have a mis-mash of packs waiting for me to rip, so now that I blog blog blog, I'll probably do that here one night. I even have a half-dozen packs from like 6 series ago that I got at the Dollar Store. Oh what treasures might be contained.

I am always disappointed when I go in a subculture shop and they have never even heard of Wacky Packages, let alone have any for sale. I am always delighted when I find Wacky Packages inside a Big Box store, gently mocking all the rest of the products therein.

Unfortunately for historical accuracy, I can no longer match up the Polar Pete coupon to the actual Wacky sticker that was on the front of the 'card'. Maybe someday this summer when I truly have nothing else to do I'll figure that out. Yeah, right.

I think in the world of Comics and Comic Cons, the artists behind Wacky Packages get some recognition. I hope so. I'm not one to ever wander into that scene much at all, at least not far past the wonderful world of Wacky Packages. But I have always been impressed that Topps has always put interesting artists to work. I hope they continue to do so. There is a whole galaxy of them featured in Juxtapoz magazine pretty regularly that I think Topps should use as their AAA affiliate for such efforts. Which could even hybridize with their sports cards efforts. It's happened before...but that's another post for another wish list day.

Now it turns out that naturally all of the 20 coupons from that Series 1 release a half-dozen years ago are available online for your enjoyment. But back then I didn't dream up that possibility, so I had several of them scanned in. Here is another favorite:

I think a lot people on the Internet should use these. I wish Topps would have made the actual sticker for it.

Sometimes, I can't believe Topps makes these things for kids:

So insidiously subversive sometimes. This one, perhaps not so much, but it amuses me. I'm sure I'll post lots of Wacky stuff goin' down the road feelin' sad.

That bit of not-quite-kid humor reminds me of my favorite Laffy Taffy joke. Oh, yes, I love Laffy Taffy jokes too. You've never heard of Laffy Taffy jokes? Pity for you. I guess I need to "collect" some of them. Topps won't sell me gum any more, so I gotta satisfy my palette's sweet tooth simultaneously with my subconscious one somehow too.

I kinda wish I had a copy of the best one ever...if I did it would now become part of this post. Oh, wait, I forgot. Everything ever is already on the Internet:

Ouch. Sorry, kid, you were just forced to grow up a little tiny bit.

Though that one is actually a kinder, gentler, variation of the original, which has a much lower number. "What is the hardest kind of tea to swallow? Reality."

Sorry, surreality fans, no time to track down an image of that one. You'll have to complete that completist assignment on your own time/dime. A bit of homework for you.


  1. I suspected your background was Wacky Package-related. I've often thought of including a Wacky Package sticker in my blog design.

    I opened my fair share of Wacky Packages back in the original days in the '70s. They are high art where I come from.

  2. There is a pretty obvious one I would think you would use for your blog. I'm working on a post where it will come in as a tangent, but I need to find a few more of the right cards. It will be one of my greatest Frankenset binder pages ever.