Tag Archives: Star Wars

1992 Pro Line Portraits Autograph Mike Holmgren 

This is a card I had been stalking for a while.  I missed one a few months ago on eBay, then another was listed that looked pretty rough (and wasn’t priced for the condition it was in).  Finally, I was browsing about two weeks ago and found not one, but two for sale!  Serendipitous! (SAT word, kids!)  I grabbed the cheaper of the two.I like the “Certified Authentic” stamp in the corner on these.  I also like how Holmgren signed this one very cleanly in a prominent spot on the card.  The autos in this set tended to be all over the place.  Some are on the fronts of cards, signed in dark ink and barely visible.  Some autos were squeezed into the tiny white spaces in the bottom corners on the back.  I think Holmgren called the right play here by signing boldly over the text.  I’m sure he wanted to leave that congenial smile unobstructed to contrast with this picture…
 …in which he is equal parts no-nonsense rookie head coach and Sith Lord lurking in the shadows, plotting to dominate the division for decades to come!  Already he was watching with great interest the career of a young QB from a back woods part of the galaxy called “Mississippi.”

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Show Off Post: Card Show Pickups!

My sentimental post about going to this show ran a little long and had only one measly picture, so here’s a show-off post of the spoils of my journey.  (I’ll make sure to point out the 90’s cards to, you know, establish relevance to the blog here.)

The first thing I bought, figuring I would need something to carry my new cards in, was this box.  The 800-count size turned out to be rather awkward and ungainly, but these are always good to have around.  

The first thing to go in the box was a couple cards from a singles bin – some Virginia Tech autos, a Packers jersey card and dual jersey featuring a bright orange Tennessee Volunteers swatch.  

A couple more odds and ends. The generic looking Packers card is an old playing card, don’t know much else about it, just thought it was cool. Great thing about a card show is the little random finds like this!  

Had to buy some unopened stuff, of course. I’d been looking at the Conference Greats box for a while, and couldn’t walk away from a good price on this one!

Already ditched the actual boxes these came in because my brother and I opened them in the car before we ever left the parking lot.  Fun stuff!

A couple more bonus packs here.  I’m a big fan of the Panini promotions.

Finally, some 90’s stuff!  I was a little disappointed not to find more 90’s wax, but the two autos are pretty awesome!  I’m fairly certain they’ll make another appearance on the blog here.  (The packs came with the white card box to make the change easier when I paid for it. Haha.) 

Lastly, some more fun, oddball kind of stuff.  The Star Wars cards are one of my favorite pick ups from the show, as mentioned in my previous post.  The “G Force” flag has some sort of spinner thing on the corner.  Again, goofy, but I enjoy it.  The Super Bowl program is just plain cool!      

I post all this not just to show it off but to really illustrate the point of how much cool stuff there is at a card show.  I was sorely tempted by an Aaron Rodgers auto card I saw, framed and matted with a photo above it, but I had already spent [redacted!]. (Yeah, right, no way I’m putting in writing what I spent.  My wife reads my blog, too! LOL!)  Toying with the idea of bigger purchases is yet another fun aspect of a show, even if you end up leaving those things for someone with a little deeper pockets.  I had a blast at the card show, hanging out with my brother and just enjoying the experience of being around so many other collectors.  If you haven’t been to a show in a while (or have never been), I would strongly recommend making an effort to check one out!

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Then & Now: The Card Show

One of the greatest experiences of my younger collecting days was going to a card show.  There was one held here in town every year, and it was the highlight of my summer.  Nothing could compare to walking into a cavernous room filled with millions of cards owned by people who practically begged me to buy from them.  Walking up and down long rows of vendors, I would stop and look at anything that caught my eye.  I would sort through endless singles boxes, looking for cards of my Green Bay Packers.  Every now and then, something big would catch my eye.  One of those eye-catching items was a 1991 Star Pics Brett Favre RC Auto (but that’s a story for another time)!  The various other pieces of memorabilia were fun to look at, but they were just decorations to me.  I walked right by jerseys, helmets, pictures and paintings on my way between treasure troves of cards.  When my dad made the mistake of stopping to try to look at those items, I politely reminded him that I had yet to see each and every football card at the show, and there was simply no time to waste.

I have been to several shows since I returned to collecting, including the National in Baltimore a few years ago.  (I could’ve spent every day for a month in there!)  The show that inspired this post, though, was one my brother and I went to recently outside of Washington, DC.  Instead of a quick drive downtown, we took three hours to make a two-hour drive to the place (I-95 traffic, ugh).  I dislike traffic in a bad way, but walking in the door of that card show made it all worth while.  There in front of me was a cavernous room filled with millions of football cards and people who would practically beg me to buy from them.  The familiar jerseys, helmets, pictures and paintings were still there, neatly decorating the football cards I would be sorting through for the next four hours.  (I did find myself taking a passing interest in a couple of them now, though.)  

On the surface, things were largely unchanged from my experiences as a young collector.  The place was huge, the cards and other assorted memorabilia were there, and a kid in a candy store never knew the kind of thrill that I felt walking in the door.  There were differences, but they were subtle; for starters, I found out about the show on Twitter.  As I mentioned, it wasn’t here in town, but it was close enough to make a day out of it.  (Granted, that also means they probably had to draw from a larger area to get a similar crowd, which is a sad reality that I feel has been thoroughly discussed elsewhere.)  The singles boxes I sorted through are now filled with autographs and jersey cards; the base cards I used to pore over have been relegated to massive, impersonal inventories online.  Heck, shuffling through one box, we found no fewer than twenty of the exact same autograph card of some long forgotten Chiefs rookie.  As I got closer to present day in the card bins, their variety of brands dwindled significantly, too.  

My brother was there on a mission: looking for rookie cards of NFL Hall of Famers (and he got some great deals!). Instead of walking all over the place comparison shopping, though, we ended up comparing prices with various websites on our phones.  I even did some mobile online comparison shopping for boxes I bought, though my wax purchases came largely from one of my go-to online places who had a booth set up at the show.

Aside from being a sidekick in the Tolkien-esque HOF RC hunt, my favorite part of the show went straight back to the roots of what I loved about being there.  We came across a vendor who had a ton of old wax packs, long stale bubblegum and all, spread out on his table.  He also had a stack of old football RC’s that had drawn us in to begin with, but as my brother worked his way through those, the rest of the table caught my eye.  Old entertainment wax packs – Andy Griffith, Star Trek, various other TV shows I know by name only, and then… Star Wars!  Old school, original Topps Star Wars packs, from when the movies first came out.  A New Hope, Empire Strikes Back, Return (not “Revenge”) of the Jedi.  I bought one pack from each of the movies (for a total of only $10!), but it was the conversation that I really cherished.  This vendor in particular used to travel to the very show that  had attended as a wide-eyed and badly under-funded young collector.  We reminisced about the location, the show, and the organization (Tuff Stuff) that used to host it.  We discussed whether I should open the packs or keep them as collectors items themselves.  (I opened them.)  The guy even mentioned to me that he has a buddy who loves to eat the old, hard, discolored gum.  His exact words were “Apparently it’s like eating Cheetos – crunchy, but then it just kind of dissolves in your mouth.”  (LOL, ewwwwww!)  But most importantly, it was a real, face-to-face interaction with another collector – someone else who understood why that three hour drive was worth every minute, someone who shared my inexplicable passion for smallish rectangles of cardboard.  I bought some modern stuff at the show, which I’ll show off in another post, but it was these three Star Wars packs and the conversation I had over them that led me to truly appreciate how awesome it was to be at a card show – in a warehouse-sized room full of people from all walks of life who are just as fanatical about the hobby I love.    

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Singles Snapshot: 1991 Pro Set World League #31 Jason Garrett

In today’s installment of “Before They Were Stars (or Evil Sith Lords),” we have this guy: IMG_9811
IMG_9813Could he be the villain in Episode VII? Will Tony Romo finally bring balance to the Force? Who is the mysterious Storm Trooper in the trailer who awakens to find he’s been traded to Arizona?

BONUS: Post your Twitter handle and the name of your favorite NFL team in the comments to win this card and a ten-card lot of your team! (Need at least ten entries before I’ll do the giveaway!)

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Singles Snapshot: 1991 Pro Set #126 Bill Belichick

Before he was elected Supreme Chancellor and ultimately revealed to be the sinister, hooded Lord of the Sith…

Bill Belichick appeared on this 1991 Pro Set rookie card. There’s no hood on that Browns Starter jacket (a 90’s throwback in and of itself!), and it has two unaltered, full-length sleeves!

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All nerdy, anti-Patriots jokes aside, this card is a classic to me. The simple design of the front is paired with an immensely informative bio on the back. (Before they had Wikipedia pages, all you needed to know about a guy could be found on the back of his early Pro Set cards!)

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With his prized pupil, Darth Brady, he would go on to drive Obi-Wan Kurtwarner into hiding in Arizona and establish a reign of terror throughout the Galactic Football League… *theme music*

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