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Tops Reads of 2018

I’m glad to finish documenting my favorite blog reads (for myself but sharing since it may interest others). Have a Happy New Year 2019!

8. Joe’s nightmare of Heritage 2024 is also mine (from different angles including the fear of about 6 more Yount and Brett rookie reprints before 2024).

7. Shoebox Legends’ Frankenset series where he considers which cards to add is some good casual reading. This one had a 1975 card that stayed in – so that’s a win.

6. Bob’s post about nothing is very apropos as I’ve recently been watching a lot of Seinfeld reruns.  I relate to the Allen card on the desk making you happy.

5. I’m a sucker for good vintage stories with a card/photography angle. Bo had a good one here with Rico Petrocelli, who’s in the 1975 set.

4. Duff retired – congratulations and thank you for your service! Everything about this post was cool. I wonder if he ever figured out what he was going to do with that Nascar tire he won in a prize drawing at a hockey game. If not, maybe now he’ll have time to work on that 🙂

3. 2018 was a year where at least a couple of bloggers reassessed there collecting approach. I expect it’s something many of us think of occasionally. Night Owl wrote here and Tony took stock earlier in the year.

I also felt naive when I started collecting 1975 cards again. Defining your path is full of twist and turns. Placing limits is hard at first, but for me it permeated my habits to a point where I know I can’t have it all. You grow wiser. And now I can usually jedi-mind trick myself out of buying yet another Yount or Brett rookie reprint (but I do like that poster in Tony’s post 🙂  It also feels like many of us got parallel overload in 2018. How does this play out? We’ll see.

2. Night Owl’s seventh favorite non-sports card put this on the list. That was the card I just posted for Christmas – a 1975 style Kris Kringle. Reading his post turned into one of those “I didn’t know this existed moments” wherein I immediately started surfing the web and bought the card that day. He’s also got a Beanball reprint card in there – also up my alley.

1. I liked Bo’s now & then post about a Flashback card and Paul’s look back at card companies from the junk wax era. These are in the same category as the typical fare in the Topps Archives blog, which easily in my Top 5.

Toppcat writes about Topps history like in this post or tough to find hobby artifacts. My favorite post of the year snuck into the list just a few days ago. It’s about the 1975 Topps Sports club. I happened to start collecting mail-in collectibles recently and ended up with an extra of the Topps baseball and football Sport Club newsletters (so if anyone’s interested drop me a line).

These are about as direct a connection to my childhood as 1975 cards. To a kid, mailing in for stuff in the 70’s was like seeking supplies from some remote island in the 1880’s. Could you just picture your kid self on that island? I’m picturing a Seinfeld-esque bit… What should we order next, sir, flour… coffee? No! Cancel all the flour. Cancel all the sundries! We need more uncut checklists. More Sea-Monkeys… and Sports Club newsletters!

Top Reads of 2017

You’ll find more Top Reads of 2017 at Athletes with Phones.

Here are some of my favorite blogs posts from 2017…

8. Joe Shlabotnik combined haiku and cards the result is a creative post.

7. P-Town Tom wrote a great 6th anniversary post with a bit of everything. I like the baseball coach angle.

6. Many have pondered how old people look vs. their actual age. Paul’s post covers that topic for baseball cards. The Bad News Bears reference gets bonus points.

5. Sometimes nobody’s asking for a thoughtful analysis of on subjects that haven’t been considered. But Night Owl’s there to provide said analysis. Sometimes includes cards like 1975’s ERA Leader card with its Buzz Capra and Catfish Hunter nickname match-up. The only thing better than the nicknames are the expressions.

4. I’m a sucker for good stories like one where Tony got a bat signed by Robin Yount. Like the Ron Cey lamp story, there’s also a wife involved 🙂

3. Julie’s Summer of ’74 post is a great nostalgia laced read – an intricate blend that hits the right notes.

2. 42 years later, someone observed the 1975 Cubs team card had a face that was whited out. Who was it wondered Paul (and now me)?

1. In another flea market visit by Fuji, his $10 find of Star Wars and Star Trek cards is one of my favorite discoveries. And spelling out Chronicles of Fuji with the stickers was creative. But there was an even better post – a sentimental Father’s Day post. Certain things do get better with age, including Fuji’s blog in 2017.

Card Spotlight: 1976 SSPC Countdown Carbo 411, Rader 59 (#15)

Facial Expressions.

This set is chock full of facial expressions. Here’s a tangent: I don’t really use that expression “chock full” – it just popped in my head as I was writing. It reminds me of Chock full o’Nuts, a brand of coffee that I didn’t grow up drinking but somehow remember.

The story goes: a guy owned nut store in the 1920’s and those morphed into a chain of coffee stores that morphed into coffee sold in grocery stores. At some point Jackie Robinson worked for the company with the oddball name.

Speaking of nuts, I haven’t counted, but I’d bet this set has more nutty, oddball expressions than most others.


Hey Bernie, what do you think of Chock full o’Nuts? Oh, it can’t be that bad…

Carbo played for the Reds previously and still had connections and friendships from his stint with Cincinnati. Then he had to compete with them and lose in the 1975 World Series. Sometime that’s how life works out – right place, wrong team. It’s the journey that matters.


Doug Rader on the left looks like he had a second cup of coffee. This card shows him in the new Astros uniform (introduced in 1975 to commemorate the Astrodome’s 10th anniversary). It also has a clear view of a circular black 40 patch. That’s a tribute to Doug’s former teammate Don Wilson, who died under mysterious circumstances in 1975. On the right, aside from his toned down Topps-approved expression, you can see Doug in the 1974 uniform.

Public Service announcement for me and you… If you’re looking for SSPC cards from this set, I have almost 70 on COMC here and many more that I can mail out. If you want a bunch and write a blog, contact me to work something out.