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Friday, June 6, 2008

The Lost Box of Total Awesomeness

So when I was looking for cards for my Red Wings post, I decided to search through my stack of old hockey cards. Makes, sense, right? My '91-'96 hockey collection is probably the most organized bunch of cards in the house. I've got all the sets sorted by year and brand and stored in this big cardboard thing that holds twelve 800 count long boxes like drawers in a cabinet and you can slide them in and out as needed. I haven't really picked up a whole lot of early '90s hockey in a long, long while, so these drawers remained ignored and untouched. However, while looking for that Dino Ciccarelli card to finish up the post, I pulled out an unmarked box and found my '91 and '92 Donruss Studio sets. That was odd, they weren't supposed to be in there... I checked the rest of the boxes and hit a gold mine. I found something I hadn't seen in years. Something I thought had gotten lost in my last move. Something astounding. I found this:

No, it's not my '92 Donruss set. Slightly more astounding than that. Of course, '92 Donruss is pretty dang astounding, but no, it's... a box... full of... STUFF. I know! How cool is that! Topps Series 2 can't hold a candle to stuff. It's good stuff, too. Not just your everyday garden variety stuff. Ok, so about 2/3rds of the box is old doubles. But they're Astounding old doubles. just wait, you'll see. Now, unfortunately, I have a lot of other posts to attend to, I have to wrap up my Play Ball tribute, I've got at least two vintage Allen & Ginter posts upcoming, I need to get ready for this weekend's Sticky Saturday, and I'll probably gripe about Johan Santana's phantom no hitter some more for the hell of it. So expect to start seeing the contents of this astounding box start to show up on this page say, by early next week or so. I'm not just gonna leave you hanging like that though, there were some oddball items sitting on top of the other cards in the box, so I'll show them off first to kick off this wonderful (and ASTOUNDING) lost treasure.

You thought I was kidding. You thought I was pulling your leg, didn't you? You thought Dayf's gone all unhinged from this short print thing and he's now pulling random crap out of the basement and acting like it's something special in a transparent attempt to mask the pain, didn't you. WELL IN YOUR FACE! Nothing says astounding like an '88 Jiffy Pop Disc of Ozzie Virgil. I have no earthly idea where this card came from. I probably wouldn't have bought it back in the time period this box is from and I was never really into eating Jiffy Pop. There was an incident at my grandparents house back when I was about 5 or so with the leaving the Jiffy Pop on the stove too long and the burning and the smoke and the disappointment and the crying that sort of turned me off to stove top popcorn. Hot Air popping is the way to go. I think this card realized the sheer concentrated awesomeness of this box and just sort of materialized on top of the box.

Here's some ephemera from my brief time working in Nashville. My boss gave me that business card so I could contact him when I was on the road. This was the cool boss, not the jerk boss or the slimy recruiter that left me hanging once the contract was up and wouldn't return my phone calls. I worked right downtown in a State Government office building and I was walking distance from the strip, something I regret not taking more advantage of at the time. I did get some use out of my sweet office location as I could walk to the arena where the minor league hockey team played. This was right when the Predators were coming into town and the locals were geeked up for hockey. As the team was a low level affiliate of the Philadelphia Flyers, the team mascot ended up being a weird mash up of a sabre-toothed cat and the Angel of Death. Who cares, cheap hockey is awesome. Finally we have a shopping list masking all the phone numbers on the business card so I don't get in trouble. Milk, bread, Coke, brown sugar, batteries, nails, bleach and ketchup. Sounds like a Tennessee barbeque sauce recipe. Actually, Tennessee probably has the best BBQ on earth, but the Vols beat the Bulldogs last year so screw them.

Last thing is the awesomest. This is an '81 Topps promo panel that was inserted in a magazine I bought from those Scholastic Book Sale sheets that we all took home when we were kids. I pulled mine out of the magazine and inexpertly folded it much to the chagrin of the resident card snob at our school. His panel is probably still mint, but mine is now plastered on the internet for the whole world to see so mine's better. Hey, at least I knew enough not to cut it up into individual cards. This is a pretty good panel too, Duane Kuiper (recipient of Indians' "Good Guy" award in 1978), Paul Mirabella, Steve Garvey, Matt Keough, Mike Easler and Gary Matthews. Garvey All-Star AND a Brave in the panel. Sweeeeeeeeet! It's too bad I bungled the folding and creased up the bottom of Garvey's card. If I would have folded up Mike Easler instead I could have had the panel professionally cut, then I'd have a Steve Garvey card with Gem Mint corners and edges for grading. well, and a few creases in the middle of the card too, but the corners would be freakin' PERFECT.

Ok, that's enough excitement for now, I don't want to wear y'all out. I'll start excavating the rest of the box soon.

UPDATE: turns out my friend Josh gave me the Jiffy Pop card a loooong time ago. Thanks Josh!


--David said...

That is awesome! Not only a Triber in there, but the fact you found a box of cards you thought long lost and forgotten! This is EXACTLY why 'old school collectors' like those of us posting our cards and collecting habits do it, and what makes us (well, me at least) wish and hope for the same kind of discovery in our own basements... :-)

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on finding the box. That is what I dream of every time I go through my old cards

Bay Rat North West said...

If you ever have the itch to trade away that panel let me know. I have never seen one but heard of it. 81 was my first year and at Sport Fest I picked up all 3 81 baseball sets, football and basketball. But the best was a perfect condition 1981 Topps promo sheet for baseball. I am framing that bad boy.