I forgot to mention that I also bought a jumbo box of 2010 Upper Deck (RIP) around the same time I got my first shipments. 650 cards and not one single duplicate. Now that's good collation ! How things have changed in 20 years...I'm still 17 cards shy from the complete set, but I can live with it. I like the fact that they decided to write on their cards that hey, ok, we're not licensed, but we'll still act as if we were and deal with it later. The one thing I liked a little less was this leaflet at the bottom of the box with a picture of Mickey Mantle on it. So far so good. Except it was to suggest that if I hadn't found Jesus yet, it wasn't too late, that the Christian church was here. I'm good, thanks. But what is THAT all about and how did they convince Upper Deck to go for it ? (money and religion can be very powerful, I suppose).
Anyway, back to the story of my collecting life.
As I said, I had a 25$ store credit at Dave & Adam's. Which basically pays for S&H on one box of cards. But come on. I can either have free shipping on a box I would've included in a bigger order to save on shipping (each extra box is around 10$ more for S&H, depending on its weight) OR save 25$ off an order I'd normally have placed. Let's go with that option. I tend to forget that there haven't been 36 packs and 15 cards per pack boxes for 15 years. I managed to fit 8 boxes plus a couple of random packs for under 50$ S&H. That's 20% of the order (since I only buy boxes that are 40$ or less, S&H is usually 50 to 200% the cost of the actual product). That's really sweet. Let's go for it. Good thing I have 25$ off !
The order arrived super fast. I tracked it on the UPS website, so I knew it was coming. Since they say that they deliver between 9 am and 8 pm, I, of course, was up at 9 (I don't trust my doorbell to wake me up, and when I get new cards, I like to look fresh and perky). The hours can go by really slow when all you're doing is wait. Let's make this short, though : the guy got here at 3:30 pm. With a very large package in his hands. I believe he saw the smile on my face (even though I was trying to stay dignified with my poker face) from the distance, but didn't mention it. What he did mention, though, was that I owed him 70$ for custom fees.
Custom fees are a real pain. They are completely random, you never know when your package will be intercepted, it's pretty much a gamble. But let's say that over 150$ worth of merchandise, the house almost always wins.
He actually wanted them cash only, so I had to ask my neighbours to help me out, but that's another story.
Here's what the package yielded
Notice the little cup of coffee that helped me stay awake and sane.
Here's the breakdown :
2013 Cooperstown : now those are really ugly cards
2012 Heritage blaster box : nothing fancy in it, just base cards. But I still like them.
2013 Allen & Ginter's jumbo : about 250 cards that are really fun to collect, and a couple of nice relics. Still don't know what to do with the minis (probably look at The dutch card guy's want list and send some out), but they look nice in the little box I found for them.
2011 Lineage : that was also really fun to open. The inserts are crazy. The base set looks nice, except that they didn't exactly spend a lot of time finding a design for the backs, nor bother putting stats, but still, I like them. Some minis, some cloth, some venezuelan, some relics, some 3D, some parallels that hurt your eyes etc.
Nothing much to say about the 2004 UD or 1998 UD.
I absolutely love the 1993 Stadium club set. There are amazing photos in there. I should actually just write a post about it one day and scan the ones I like the most. Let's put a pin on that. I'm actually excited that they are bringing stadium club back this year. I just hope they'll focus on action shots more than on memorabilia. It reminds me that the most precious card in my collection at the time was a Franck Thomas first day edition worth something like 60$. It's now worth 4$ (if that). Glad I traded it 15 years ago for 10ct commons that are still worth 10 cts.
2003 UD MVP was absolutely pointless. I like some of the designs from the MVP sets, but this one's really not a winner (sometimes I'm lazy and I just pick pictures off the internet, sorry)
As a gift, I received a few packs of 2013 Chipz. I suppose it's kids oriented, wich is always a good thing, but I have trouble finding a point to it. Then again, I collect pieces of cardboard...And of course, they managed to add GU chipz in there. And I actually got a Jay Bruce GU bat, numbered 17/50. Woohoo ! Something to show the grand kids one day.
So a whole bunch of new Blue Jays, never seen before designs and cards, some Griffeys, 3 hours of non stop pack busting and a very expensive summer christmas gift to me. After close to 20 boxes of cards to get me back into the hobby, maybe I'll calm down a little and focus on other things (team sets, singles, lots etc.). Maybe.