Before I get flooded with requests for bat barrel autographs, two-color patches, and tri-fold relic cards, let me clarify the title of this post:
Some of you may know that my wife and I bought our first house and moved this past summer. While it was overall a decent experience (I will not bore you with details of the negotiations from hell), the most dreaded portion of the entire process (other than acquiring a splendid 30-year mortgage) was packing and moving all of our stuff. Granted, we were only a few months over a year removed from college, so we did not have mountains of things and were still in the mindset of packing as efficiently as possible. However, it was still a pain.
One of the biggest surprises for me in the moving process was just how much my card collection had exploded in the year we were in our apartment. I went from having a single computer monitor box somewhat full of cards, boxes, binders, etc. to having the same monitor box completely stuffed, along with 3 other medium sized boxes stuffed with cards. Realizing that I only planned to continue collecting cards, I knew I needed a solution. Part one involved my fear of becoming a hoarder and the consequential decision to throw away all of my empty boxes and wrappers (except maybe one from each set I have hand collated). I have not done this yet as I am still trying to reorganize and catalog my entire collection, but I have made the definitive decision to some day soon throw it all out.
Step two involves my old baseball cards. As any other American boy, I collected baseball cards when I was a kid. As a result, I have a slew of cards from the “junk wax” era simply occupying space in my home office. I have tried to come up with alternative uses for my cards, but quite frankly, there are just too many. As I now know my interest in baseball cards is dead, it is time to rid myself of my entire baseball card collection. But how should I do this? I figure I have a few options:
1) Break the entire collection into teams, regardless the count of each team. Hold a giveaway on this blog that simply asks readers to tell me which is their favorite baseball team to collect. The first person to respond for each team would get every card I own for that team. Obviously this would be geared towards helping out team builders and would be the simplest method of handing out the entire stash. It does, however, fall directly into a first-come first-served basis, so perhaps a die-hard Yankees fan is snuffed simply because he responded after a casual Yankees fan hoping for some priceless Don Mattingly or Babe Ruth reprint cards.
2) Create sample “grab bags” containing 50-100 random cards. Hold some sort of contest allowing all readers an equal chance to win. The winners would be awarded a hierachy of prizes where the 1st person might get 10 “packs,” the 2nd person gets 7 “packs,” the 3rd 5, and so on and so forth. I could also hold several contests to help add an interaction element to the blog, get several groupings of readers involved, and I wouldn’t have as many large packages to ship. This would be geared more towards “priceless” cardboard fans.
3) Break entire collection into team sets, but this time further break teams into groups of 50. Either hold contests that are a mix of options 1 and 2 above, or try to sell them on eBay for a few dollars. I could also try selling the random “grab bags” from option 2. This would open up to the much wider audience of eBay, as well as help me to cover shipping and supply expenses.
4) Throw the whole darn thing away at the same time the empty boxes and packs go. They aren’t worth anything more than simple kindling and I sorta doubt any one wants me to mail them my garbage (sorry, Joe, I did say “garbage”).
The only problem with all of this is that when I take a few fleeting glimpses inside the boxes, I am reminded of the hours upon hours I spent on the living room floor or my bed organizing, sorting, reorganizing, and studying each of those cards. I can remember the sheer excitement I had they day I thought I had a pristine T206 Honus Wagner card (which I quickly learned was actually a very cheap reproduction of the legendary card). I vividly remember giggling every time I flipped over a Mookie Wilson card, because his name was so close to Cookie and started with a “Moo”, like a cow, which produces milk, which is great with Cookies. I recall being so proud of my late 80s Donruss cards of Darren Daulton and Lenny Dykstra, my two favorite players of my youth. But in the end, they do not mean anything to me at this point in my life and really are a waste of space.
Wow. Writing that, I just a great idea. As I sort through the whole mess of cardboard into team or random groups, I should scan all the cards that remind me of specific things. It will make for great rainy day posts and will serve as a reminder of those simpler times, even AFTER I give them all away (or burn them to make Rob happy).
Anywho, now that this post is absurdly long, please answer the following poll and leave any comments you feel necessary.