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Thursday Cannon Fodder: trading cards

Houston Astros v Detroit Tigers Photo by Dave Reginek/Getty Images

Good morning, TSFers. Thursday is always a great day because it’s one day before Friday. I know a good portion of the U.S. is getting slammed with that big winter storm, but here in D.C. we have a chance to set a record high today. I’m not rubbing that in y’all’s faces, either. I’d love to have some winter weather. We’ve had one measurable snow this winter, and it took until mid-February to come, one of the latest first snows we’ve ever had.

Today’s CF is about trading cards, prompted by a banner ad I saw online when I opened up Firefox this morning. I had sports cards in mind, but I suppose you could include Magic: The Gathering, Pokemon, etc. in the conversation as well. I can’t find it right now, but I recently read a really interesting article about the craziness that card collecting has become nowadays — hours of waiting for stores to open, insiders with info on when shipments are going to arrive, obscenely high card values, and some other, less-than-savory aspects, too.

I collected all sorts as a kid: baseball, basketball, hockey, Pokemon, and Star Wars (yes, there was Star Wars trading card game, too). I kept most them in binders, but some were casually in boxes, too.

Baseball cards were my favorite by far. I had a binder for each division, and each binder was organized by team, with dividers to separate them. For a while, I think I tried to order the players by position within their teams, too. I never did figure out what to do when players were traded or signed elsewhere in free agency. I couldn’t have Mike Mussina wearing an Orioles jersey in the Yankees section, but he also didn’t play for the Orioles anymore! It was quite the conundrum.

I think my binders are still somewhere at my parents’ house. There may even be some valuable cards in them. There definitely are some valuable cards among my Dad’s collection from when he was a kid, although they probably wouldn’t get the highest card-quality grades. I should go through both collections at some point, but I don’t know if I’d want to sell any cards. I like the idea of having a cool, rare card even if I didn’t know it was there for more than two decades.

Did you collect trading cards as a kid? Do you still? Who was your favorite card? Did you have any valuable / rare ones?