Every once in a while I find little treasures like this at work. I work in a warehouse that receives almost all of it’s inventory from Taiwan, China, and of course Mexico. Sometimes when breaking down a pallet I find little mementos left by some foreign dock worker. Usually they toss their candy wrappers, empty packs of gum, cigarette butts, and sometimes they leave the occasional empty pack with a guy smoking while holding a young infant. I’m not sure if this particular brand is targeting young fathers who want to seem hip to their young ones, but it sure makes me want to grab a baby and start smoking!
Tonight I came across something a little more intriguing than usual.
It appears to be some sort of Taiwanese Allen & Ginter Flags Of The World knockoff.
If I could read Taiwanese or even possibly Chinese I would know exactly what the hell this is, but I can’t so I have no idea what I have here. On the back it appears it may have some sort of instructions on how to collect these and maybe turn them in for some sort of prize? Again, I have no idea. If anybody could explain why the flag of Sweden is on a card with a bunch of non-Swedish writing on it, I would be most appreciative! I highly doubt anyone will step forward to accept this challenge, so until someone does I am going to go ahead and call this a Taiwanese Flags of The World Tobacco Trading Card. Does anybody have a better guess?
Today I had the pleasure of attending the first real card show I have gone to since the ’80’s. Sure, my little po-dunk town has the monthly card show extravaganza, but this one was the big time. It was the Chicago Sun Times show in Rosemont IL. Some of the cool stuff I saw today included Bob Feller, Hulk Hogan, the Strasburg red Bowman auto, several Babe Ruth autographs, boxes on top of boxes of vintage greatness, a couple of Negro League Veterans, a Rockford Peach, Al Kaline, Mr. Mint at an empty table with no one visiting him all day, and porn stars! Yep, porn stars. Now maybe I’m old fashion, but if I’m running a convention center, I’d probably try to talk either the porn expo or the card show to book for a different weekend. Not this convention center, in fact you had to walk right by the porn stars to get to the card show and on the way out, the escalator was directly in line with the large glass wall that separated the porn from the public. It was a bit of a surreal sight to see fathers and sons walking in the same lobby as chicks with 8 inch heels wearing what I guess you would call dental floss for the ass? There was also a doll auction going on, so all kinds of spoiled rich little brats were in the mix. It was interesting to say the least!
The good news is I spent $100 on nothing but some sweet 1962 Topps! It’s been a long while since I’ve picked anything up so I took advantage. If I had the money I could have easily finished the set off, but where would the fun be in that? I’ve decided to get back to the basics here at the Project so here is my first card to show.
Card #588 Birdie Tebbetts, Yep it’s one of the pain in the ass hi-numbers!
Is it just me or does it look like Birdie is signaling to a waitress for a beer? Either that or he’s asking the guy if it’s really a good idea to mix porn with baseball cards. Tebbetts started his career in baseball as a catcher for the Detroit Tigers and later played for the Boston Red Sox and the Cleveland Indians. He than went on to manage the Cincinnati Reds and the Milwaukee Braves. He was voted the Time Magazine Manager of the Year in 1956 for taking the Redlegs all the way to third place by going 91-63. He resigned after a heart attack and went on to be a pro scout for the next 28 years. As a scout he provided reports such as this, “Major league stuff and a great arm. Screwy in the head. Eliminate head and I recommend him. Get good surgeon.” Simply brilliant!
Hopefully I’ll get to posting a few more cards this week and share a few of the more interesting stories about today’s adventures.
I don’t even know where to start on this shit? Let’s start out with the completely unsurprising and quite expected reaction to Mr. Powers spending $16,000 on a baseball card. This guy buys the most expensive modern-day baseball card and a few crazies go nuts. That kind of shit happens all of the time. “It started with threatening eBay messages” he says, no shit, you mean people on eBay aren’t mature enough not to mock you? That’s a surprise!? I get stupid shit eBay messages from random assholes all the time, and I didn’t just blow a years salary for some on a goddamn card! He makes it sound like the bullies on the playground made him give them his lunch money when in reality I’m sure he was freaking out that just maybe he did spend a little too much on this card of a player who had zero innings in the bigs and maybe, just maybe, he could get his money back and hopefully a little extra to get his wife off his back.
He says he received threats because of his purchase. Who the hell is going to threaten somebody for buying baseball cards? What kind of threat would they make? Hey you, you’re the guy who bought that card, I’m going to make sex with your wife and sock you in the face. I’m sure that whole situation likely happened. The worst of them all is when somebody compared him to Bernie Madoff. Get the fuck out of here! If shit like that bothers you to the point of tears, you need to toughen the fuck up! Grow some balls and tell every one of the nay-sayers to fuck off and mind their own business, don’t cry about it and tell the teacher that mean people are picking on you.
Here’s the best quote of the piece, “That’s very unfortunate when we’ve got soldiers dying in Afghanistan and people are throwing profanity at me for a baseball card? It was a letdown, we’ll just say that.” This doesn’t even make one bit of dog shit sense! People are dying in a war so we the people should not throw profanity at someone for spending $16,000 on a baseball card? How’s this for a letdown, people in this country are struggling to feed their children and your blowing $16,000 on a fucking baseball card you fucking clueless asshole! FUCK!?!?!?! Here’s an idea, take some of the $5,000 profit you just banked and put half of it towards a Veteran’s program. You obviously could afford it and still get your Roberto Clemente RC. I bet you won’t do it, but it would be one hell of a way to turn all the negativity flying your way into something very positive. But that’s not really what you’re interested in, now is it.
The worst part of this whole story is the new owner of the card is Brian Grey of Razor, you know the company that was bank rolled by Upper Deck. He purchased it to put it in a product that is going to feature high-grade iconic rookie cards from all sports. This is genius! Upper Deck, err, I mean Razor is going to buy a Topps produced card, mix it up with more Topps cards and then sell them off like lottery tickets, all the while I would assume pocketing more money than Topps originally made from them. So that’s how Upper Deck will return to baseball. Genius!
This brings to Chris Olds’ commentary. Way to sell us collectors out once again. The whole piece made us out to be bad guys, and let me tell you, Chris Olds is ashamed of us all! How dare we harass this poor schmuck! All he wanted to do was buy a baseball card and we all had to do is tell him like it was. Shame on us! Here’s the bit I can’t stand.
While Power initially contacted Beckett to inquire about grading the card on June 14, he didn’t have the card in his possession when he was interviewed by ESPN on June 18 – the card was en route to BGS, which examined the card on June 22 and gave it a 9.5 grade. (The card’s obvious flaw being its centering.)
This, too, inspired more turmoil online as grading “experts” balked at the grade, saying it was too generous and a grade ultimately attributed to being a publicity stunt because it’s a high-profile card – complaints BGS often hears as it is the reputation as being the most strict of any grading service.
Don’t you like how he refers to us as “experts”. We’re not complaining because you were too strict, but you have no rhyme or reason for your grades. Look asshole, the card is way off-center and we could all see the frayed edges without any sort of magnification. If that makes me an “expert” than so be it. I do know that if this was any other card in the world in that exact same condition it would not have received a 9.5 and if you can’t admit that then you’re not only lying to the collectors, but you’re lying to yourself. I don’t know what the motivation was for the padded grade, but it was padded. By the way, your on camera interviewing skills suck and you could probably lay off the KFC, Taco Bell, and the Pizza Hut! And your gay for Swisher. How’s that for threats and harassment?
So to sum this shit up Project ’62 style. Some guy falls off the turnip truck and pays way too much for a baseball card. He then goes on a whirlwind media tour which takes him to “chatter starved outlets” such as Beckett and ESPN so he could be their “ultimate novelty story”. He freaks out when people tell him the truth, some obviously nicer than others. He then sees the ridiculous nature of the autographed red parallel auction and thinks if he’s ever going to see any of his money back now’s the time to sell. After the sale people start to question why this guy who just wanted to buy his “dream card” is selling it after only a month. The KFC Double Down eating champion then scores another interview for his chatter starved magazine and goes on to tell a tale of how a threatening collecting community forced this poor soul to part ways with his dream card for $5000 more than he paid for it. Poor guy. So in the end we are all the bad guys and this guy got the short end of the stick, you know, the end with $5000 stuck to it. “It was a letdown, we’ll just say that!”