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Monday, May 12, 2008

Card Of the Week 5/12/08

They call it Sticky Monday.......

but Tuesday's just as bad.

Sticky Saturday is now on Monday....

'cause I goofed off this weekend, boy am I bad.

and now my fuel pump done blowed up...

isn't that just too sad.

So Sticky Saturday and the Card of the Week is being merged today for efficiency's sake. I kind of took this weekend off and then the fuel pump died on my car today so I want to kill two birds with one stone. It sucks about the car, for the price of the pump replacement I could've gotten a superfractor of this guy. So this week's card of the week is a sticker, but it's also kind of a card, or at least card related, so what is it? It's this:

A 1963 Topps Ernie Banks Peel-Off insert. I sometimes feel a little gypped having started collecting in the 80's. Our insert cards were gum, puzzles and stickers and that's it. Back in the 60's there were stamps and pin ups and fold 'ems and bizarre embossed gold foil things and scratch offs and game cards and rub offs and these decals stuffed into packs as a bonus for buying cards. I'm not saying I don't appreciate the stickers and puzzles and now toxic gum, it's just that there was such a variety of oddball junk inserted into bubble gum packs in the 60's. The whole thing is really quite fascinating. Other than a coupe of upstart sets, Topps managed to maintain their monopoly on baseball cards in the 60's, so it's not like they needed these things to compete with another manufacturer. Perhaps they did it not to complete with trading cards but with comics and marbles and Red Ryder BB guns and.. what the heck was popular for kids back in the 60's anyways? Marijuana's the only thing that comes to mind and I don't think they were competing for that market. Well, not until 1972 at least. Topps really threw the kitchen sink at their oddball designs of that time. You don't see stuff like this inserted in every pack anymore.

And that's the key, stuff like this has to be in every pack. You dole stuff you're supposed to stick or rub or paste on something out every few packs and they become a chase card, something to greedily hoard instead of sticking all over the place for no reason. It's like those tattoos Topps put in Opening Day this year. Who wants to put on a tattoo of Fredbird or the Phillie Phanatic when they are only 3 per hobby box and book in a price guide? If Topps would only put these things one per pack, I'd proudly slap Mr. Met on my forehead and wander around in public like a doofus in solidarity to Topps returning to their roots. No one appreciates a good goofball insert card nowadays. Everyone ignored the mini posters inserted in the Donruss Estrellas sets. Ok, so they ignored the Estrellas sets as well. I bought a box at least! It's all about the autographs now, which is probably why I get all nostalgic for these oddballs that were released before I was born.

See right there on the pack it says " Put All Stars on books, walls, bikes, anything!". PEEL OFF BACK. VANDALIZE YOUR SCHOOL. Stick Mickey Mantle's face in the middle of the hymnal right on top of "Nearer, My God, To Thee". Paste Ken Aspromonte on your teacher's chair so she can fart on him all day. Alter your History textbook so that the 27th President is now Ken Hubbs. Ya can't do these things with chase cards that have pull ratios advertised in sell sheets. You sure as hell could do it with these stickers though, but I'm glad a couple of kids had some restraint so I was able to pick up a few of 'em on eBay.

The whole reason I have this sticker or decal or whatever it's supposed to be is that I wanted the Hank Aaron sticker that was in the lot. The other five weren't important, I just wanted Hank. I have to say all team loyalty aside, that Ernie is the best sticker I got. The big close up, huge smile, green oval background and red base, it's just a cool looking sticker. Plus it's Ernie. Let's play two. It's very difficult to not like Ernie if you have a decent knowledge of the game, even if you're a Cubbie hater like myself. There's no more stickers of Ernie inserted into trading card packs anymore. Maybe a short printed base card possibly serial numbered to 1999, or a piece of his pants from 1959, or a triple jersey patch with an autograph cut from a photo he signed for some kid embedded into a card, but not a cheap decal suitable for sticking on the face of your little sister's Ken doll you swiped so GI Joe could fight alongside Mr. Cub. The autos and the patches are cool and all, but every so often I wish I could forsake the internet and go back to the 60's where I could get some cool stickers with my Topps cards.


Unknown said...

So it was the fuel pump. Not a bad diagnosis job for over IM. I should go on Car Talk

ernest of canada said...

my sentiments exactly. i wish topps and ud would abandon the pretense of their insert strategies from the past twenty years and challenge us with a set of one per pack inserts to complete. something that's fun to collect and has nothing to do with a manufacturer's falsehood of preciousness.