Monday 1 January 2018

He tried

With apologies to Night Owl for even trying to call back the title to one of the funniest posts I've ever read, my mom's 84-year old husband really tried this Christmas. (And, yes, N.O., I realize that I'm a horrible friend for even reminding you of that past event, and no, I don't think that this is even close to it.)

My mom's husband knows that I collect cards. On occasion, he sees me come back to his house from shopping in Arizona with cards, and before I had my US P.O. Box, I used his mailing address on occasion to have cards shipped to.

He also knows that I am a Cleveland Browns fan. Really, with the three different Browns jackets that I wear (depending on the weather), you would think that most people would recognize that I am a Browns fan. (Although, I am amazed at the number of people that have approached me in the last month to ask me if I was, in fact, a fan of the Cleveland Browns. I think that they must assume that I'm just wearing it for the cool color scheme!)

I guess he spent a lot of time looking for deals on leading up to Christmas, and I'm sure most of us collectors know where that can lead.

To start with, spread through my stocking and then through about three different wrapped Christmas presents, I found the following:

Don't get me wrong, I'll enjoy opening these, and I'll enjoy seeing the players from my teens and early 20s, but they really don't fit in my collection. When I start opening them I'll post the results here for all to see. I can also check each one's listing on the Trading Card Database to see if they are missing pack photos. Some use can come of these.

So, this isn't too bad. I just hope that he didn't pay too much. Next, however, really burned me up. Not for the thought, but for him actually paying money to acquire...

They were all in toploaders, and the first thing that I thought was that they were all too clean, in way too nice shape, and the pictures were a little off. I knew they weren't real. I looked at the backs, no markings of reprints or anything but too perfect. I took them out of the toploaders to feel the glossy cardstock. The cards actually look better to me in this scan than they do in person.

Wrapped around the scan was a sheet of paper with the item listing and a thank you note from the seller (which I will not include here).

Hey, look! The "Reprint" cheat word!

Now, it seems to me that a reprint would have to come from the cards' originator, Topps. These are just counterfeit. But they are "MINT"! To quote the listing, "***WOW***"!

Look, as collectors, we know to avoid auctions like this. But our friends and family members don't know to. These should not be allowed.

Not that I expect it to really do anything, but I will be writing Tophatter, and copying Topps with the full information that I have about the listing. Topps has stopped other collectors from making customs using their IP, hopefully they will do something about people selling homemade "reprints" of their actual cards . It really bugs me that my mom's husband spent money on this.

I sat down with him later in the day, and showed him where it showed that the cards were *cough* reprints, and after again thanking him for buying me all the cards, said that I hoped that he didn't spend much money on any of this, and gently told him that I appreciated the effort but not to worry about buying me cards like that online again. I told him that my collection is pretty much narrowed down to Cleveland Browns and although I'll enjoy these cards, they won't really fit in my collection. We'll see if he listens.

Now, really, this doesn't even come close to Night Owl's post, so why did I bring it up? I mean, this might have made me a little sick, but it doesn't come close to the bile that he must have felt. Well, this wasn't my only present from him.

Shortly after I arrived at the house, I was asked if I ever wore a watch. I said that I did, and had a dress watch that I would wear now and then for formal events, but that really, day-to-day I don't. I mean, my phone has the time, or any computer that I'm sitting down at has the time. I just don't like wearing things on my wrist. (I detest when concerts,conventions or events make you wear those plastic wristbands. Ick.)

I didn't think anything about the conversation until I opened this up:

Let the bile begin. Outside of division rivals, there probably isn't a team that I hate more. Something to do with three AFC Championships from 1986-89.

I was stunned.

I mumbled out a thank you, but my disgust must have been noticed because he then decided to tell me why I now owned a Broncos watch - because there were no Browns watches!

When this didn't appear to clear things up for me, he told me that after he didn't see a Browns watch, he looked for a Cardinals one for me. Okay, this I understand. I visit Arizona enough that I have kind of adopted all the Phoenix teams as secondary pro sports teams, and he has bought me other Cardinals stuff over the last few years. I would have been okay with that. It might be the only other team than the Browns that I would wear, but definitely not regularly.

When there was no Cardinals watch, instead of saying that it was too bad and not getting me a watch, he insisted to himself that there must be one that I would like. He said he picked up a Bengals watch since they were both in Ohio, but then thought no. Next he said there were a lot of Eagles watches, but that he instead spied the Broncos one and thought it was great!

I sat there stunned as he explained this to me. Pretty much anyone who has met me knows that I talk a lot. I was speechless. It's been a week, and although I've been able to talk about it with friends, I'm still a little stunned at the whole thing. My friends, as expected, laughed.

So, anyway, he tried.

(Hey, Raz, if you're reading, want a watch?)

Now, I don't mind opening baseball packs and will still buy interesting things.

While shopping in Arizona I spotted this box for $15. I had never heard of the set but it looked intriguing, and I think that I would like to own a set of it. I'll do a box break on this blog, and looking at the expected numbers in the box, if two 90 card sets can be formed out of the box then I'll have a contest for the second set.

Did anyone collect this set back in 1995?

Best wishes to everyone for 2018!


  1. Ouch. That actually was pretty painful.

    I'm glad you're writing the website. I can't believe the people who have time on their hands to copy cards and attempt to sell them. It really irks me that someone you know was duped like that.

    As for the watch, when someone gets a gift idea in their head they don't let go, huh?

  2. Since my collection is so wide open, I have never really received a bad card gift. I can only imagine what you must have thought at first seeing them, especially the watch. Maybe if somebody gifted me some garbage pail crap...I mean kids...

    The reprint part really stinks. I hope you actually get a reply from them, but I am afraid it won't do much good. Hope I'm wrong!

  3. Ugh. I don't really like graded cards, but if I were ever in the market for a high end vintage rookie I'm pretty sure I would make sure it was slabbed. Glad to see you are writing the website. Keep us posted.

    Sorry about the watch too....Yikes.

  4. Ah man. It’s all a little sad because he tried and the thought was certainly there.

    I was chuckling a little with the watch story.

  5. You really need to do an update when/if you get a reply. This is the kind of thing that I really do believe that we, as blogging/collecting community could start to change, provided of course that we were all on the same page and willing to put forth the effort. Sites like that prey on the old, the young, and the inexperienced... and it's just disgusting that the card companies don't seem to care, even though in the end, it also makes them look bad as well.