As I’d mentioned in my previous post, I recently went to a local card show and I’ve chosen to refer to it as the Water Buffalo Lodge Show, since that has more meaning for most people than the actual location… assuming that “most people” have watched The Flintstones and knows what I’m talking about, anyway.
I didn’t go into the show looking for new projects, I’ve got plenty as it is, thank you very much. However, because I was open-minded and relatively reckless (by my standards) with my money, I may have gotten a start on some new projects… or maybe I didn’t.
The first possible project is 1976 Topps Football.
Although I started collecting baseball cards in 1974, 1975 was my “breakout year” for card collecting. When there was nothing else to collect for 1974 and 1975 Topps baseball (because I finished both), I turned to another sport and went nuts over 1975 Topps Football. I busted a lot of packs that fall (and finished the set in 2013) but never really got into football the same way after that. I bought a fair amount of 1976 Football, but it wasn’t the same for me and I would never again get into football the same way as I did in 1975.
So why would I think about working on the 1976 football set when it was a bit of a letdown after my favorite football set of all time? Well, I do have about 120 cards still kicking around from my childhood, but one of the key reasons I would consider completing the set is because…
[Looks around, leans in and whispers conspiratorially]
…One of those 100+ cards I’ve had since I was a kid is the Walter Payton rookie card.
Having a key card that is so very much “key”, I almost feel obligated to work on the set.
…But I don’t know. I do have a head start, but it’s only about 23% of the 528-card set and I’m a little afraid it won’t be as much fun as completing 1975 was for me.
LIKELINESS OF THIS BECOMING A PROJECT: Not a great chance in the next few years, but never say never.
One type of card I never bought as a kid was basketball cards. Almost nobody I knew followed basketball, and when I did try to follow it – because it was a team sport and I was eager to get into any team sport – it didn’t go anywhere. The only basketball cards I had as a kid were ones which came to me largely by accident.
But still, when you’re talking about the 1970s I won’t rule anything out completely.
I don’t really have a favorite team or player that would normally be the center of a collecting project, but I’ve come to realize that there is one aspect of 1970s basketball that doesn’t fail to make me nostalgic:
That red, white and blue ABA basketball.
The basketball didn’t survive the NBA-ABA merger, but it lives forever in our hearts… or at least *my* heart.
I ran across these two cards at the show, and couldn’t help but pick them up… they both have a nice shot of the ball and they’re just generally fun cards (especially since the Memphis Sounds was a one-season rebranding of the Memphis Pros/Tams and would fold before the next season began).
The thing with this project is that I want to figure out some ground rules which are more specific than “collect cards with the ABA ball”. One thing I’ve decided is that I want only those cards where you can see all three colors of the ball. I also would probably limit things to standard-sized cards, which would eliminate the tall-boy-sized 1976-77 Topps. Beyond that I don’t know what form it would take. I’m thinking of trying to get as many teams included as possible represented, but I feel like I need more ground rules than I already have. Suggestions are welcome.
LIKELINESS OF THIS BECOMING A PROJECT: This will happen once I’ve figured out how I want to approach this.
1977 Topps Hockey is the first hockey set I chased as a kid, and it was a set I did have plans to complete a few years ago, but it kinda got sidetracked by my Dead Parrot project, plus here in Shlabotsylvania you just don’t run across vintage hockey very often. When I ran across this nice-looking card in a dollar bin…
…I jumped at it. Even if I don’t move forward with 1977 Topps Hockey, this is a card worth having as part of a general hockey collection.
What I hadn’t noticed at the show was that the card wasn’t quite the deal I thought it was… Some kid decided to use the back to solve a math problem.
I honestly don’t care. The front of the card is nice, you can still read the back, there’s no paper loss, it’s all good.
LIKELINESS OF THIS BECOMING A PROJECT: Pretty good, but I’d rather finish off some of my other projects first, plus I’d prefer attacking this project with a local source of vintage hockey – I don’t enjoy the chase as much when it’s done entirely online.
I loved Fleer in the 1980s and I’ve grown to love 1963 Fleer baseball as an attractive oddball set.
There’s a part of me that always says “Go after the whole set, it’s only 66 cards!” Of course, my brain leaves out the fact that those 66 cards include Willie Mays, Roberto Clemente, Sandy Koufax, Bob Gibson, Warren Spahn, Carl Yastrzemski, the Maury Wills RC and the short-printed Joe Adcock, some fairly high-priced cards that would not fit into my budget all that well… unless it were THE top priority, which it isn’t.
LIKELINESS OF THIS BECOMING A PROJECT: Probably not, but if nothing else I’ll finish off the Orioles and probably go after the Colt .45’s and Senators (I’ve already got the Mets team set)
In the greater scheme of things, the Water Buffalo Lodge show did not change the trajectory of my collecting life, but I had fun and got cards I’m happy to add to my collection. In an upcoming post I’ll feature a card I got that’s a well-loved white whale, plus some other highlights of my show haul.