Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Whine from the winery

All in all, I'm a very happy camper, thank you very much (the mailman is probably wondering what kind of dealing I'm into, considering all those small packages that arrive in my mailbox. "baseball cards", he says, in a heavy french accent. Yeah right, whatever that is (I'd write it in french, but you might miss some of the finesse in that sentence)).

But a couple of things annoy me as of right this moment.

1 : I wanted to sell a couple of cards off Ebay. Not my thing, but I figured hey, why not make some cash, after all there are some cards I can sell as I don't see who to send them to. So I filled out the form, put some pics, made a nice little listing, put all my heart into it and was really satisfied with myself. Only to see this message by Ebay at the very end telling me that hold on, to sell things internationally you need to have at least 10 positive reviews, the last of which must be at least 90 days old. Okay. Great. I'm not going to sell random things, then wait 3 months just so Ebay will be convinced I'm a good enough seller to sell outside of France. I guess they don't want to get the U.N. involved, just in case. Keep it national.
I could send them off to Comc, but with so many cards out there, unless I have something really hot, it could be years before I sell anything. YEARS !

2 : Speaking of ebay, I won an auction the other day. A basketball card relic I didn't want that bad, but the seller offered free international shipping (my white whale) and I wanted to encourage that by helping him hardly make any money (the card was $1,75 and it costs about $2 to send a card to France in a bubble mailer). He sends me the invoice...and bumps the price by $8. The free international shipping was clearly stipulated, so I thought he was just trying to take advantage of me and that it was a way for him to artificially make money off the deal. After a couple of emails, turns out he didn't realize it said free international shipping and that it was the real cost for shipping for him. He was nice about it and non belligerent and just agreed to forget it. I could have sent the card for free to my Comc mailbox, but I didn't want it bad enough that I'd pay a $1 comc fee for it.

3 : I was filling out some checklists from the last years, and all those refractors and parallels annoy the hell out of me. I have no idea how to differentiate the different refractors, and don't really care anyway. It's a common ranting so I won't add (too much) to it, but exactly how many of the same cards do I need ? Did they learn nothing from the 90s fiasco, card-wise ?How obvious is it that they cater only to team and player collectors in hopes that they'll pursue all those ridiculous cards. When you add terrible collation on top of that, I'm not overly in love with the cards coming out these days from flagship products. To have the same card numbered to 999/300/200/100/75/50/15/1 is just plain silly and lazy.

But hey, let's keep it positive ! Here are some really cool cards to remind me what I love about the hobby. Including a parallel. But the coolest parallel set ever made, with the silver signatures from Collector's Choice. Beats orange yellow lime cranberry and strawberry refractors by a mile. And then some.


  1. Your mention of parallels being insane is a comment I've made a number of times too. A guy at my local card show claims that these parallels -- especially the 1 of 1s -- have killed the player collector. I suppose it has killed the idea that someone could own one of every card on which a player has appeared, so he probably has a point there.

  2. Parallels are annoying, but I don't think it's totally killed the player collector. For a guy with thousands of cards like Jeter or somewthing, I could see it being an impossible task. However, one of my main PCs is Ty Hensley, a Yankee farmhand with a handful of cards. But, due to parallels (especially in CRAZY Bowman), I have close to 40 cards. In that sense, it's been fun for me to player collect and add many different cards of a guy who only has a handful of them.

  3. It all started with the 93 Refractors. I remember at the time that people worried about driving away player collectors. It's well known, but the mistake they made was to make cards more and more expensive as interest in cards dwindled (for a whole bunch of reasons...Tv, video games, internet, pokemon, whatever's cool in the school yeard), and to multiply the brands.
    It's also what happened in the comic book industry in the 90s, but I guess they never learn.

    I do understand though how some might enjoy the hunt and the fun of tracking them down. But with 30 000 BLue jays cards out there, parallels aren't my priority, except a few really cool ones. And Bowman parallels are all but that

  4. I don't mind parallels since I'm a team collector, but can see where it would drive player collectors bonkers. I've thought a few times about going the player collecting route, but I love all Pirate cards equally :)

  5. I could be wrong, but I think the "positive reviews" thing on eBay goes for both buying and selling. In that case you'd just need to buy some things to get to ten pieces of positive feedback in order to sell some items. I'm pretty sure I had to do that way back when I first joined, and it wasn't even international.