Monthly Archives: February 2010

Pandora Friday Random 10

Friday already?!

  1. “Inside Out” – Chick Corea, Inside Out
  2. “I Robot” – Alan Parsons Project, I Robot
  3. “Hell’s Bells (live)” – Bill Bruford, The Bruford Tapes
  4. “Angela Smiled” – W.G. “Snuffy” Walden, A Quiet Revolution: 30 Years of Windham Hill
  5. “The Voice” – The Moody Blues, Long Distance Voyager
  6. “Do You Compute?” – Donnie Iris, 20th Century Masters – The Millenium Collection: The Best of Donnie Iris
  7. “Josie” – Steely Dan, Aja
  8. “Gothic 17” – Bill Bruford, Master Strokes 1978-1985
  9. “Linus and Lucy” – David Benoit, 20th Century Masters – The Millenium Collection: The Best of David Benoit
  10. “Lost!” – Coldplay, Viva La Vida

Enjoy the fish!


Thoughts on Thoughts and Sox

Fellow Show Me state collector AdamE from over at Thoughts on Sox dropped me a line a week ago letting me know he planned on attending a local StL card show, and he had a box of Twins that he want to hand me and expunge from his collection.  Even though I was heading to Omaha on a business trip that evening, the show was only 15 minutes away, and heck, I wouldn’t mind purging Red Sox paraphernalia from my own collection, so a meeting and a trade was on.

I hadn’t been to a card show in ages, so I printed up my Topps 1960s and 1970s wantlist, brought along a 1971 Topps Thurman Munson as possible trade, and after a few cellphone calls to track down Adam, headed on over.

clockwise, from top left: 2008 Donruss Threads Century Stars #CS-2 Harmon Killebrew; 2005 Topps All-Time Fan Favorites #92 Harmon Killebrew – cool 1970 reprint; 2005 Upper Deck Past Time Pennants #72 Rod Carew; 2005 Topps All-Time Fan Favorites #105 Rod Carew

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Pandora Friday Random 10

  1. “Mr. 9 ‘Till 5” – Premiata Forneria Marconi, Photos of Ghosts
  2. “Moonloop (Coda)” – Porcupine Tree, The Sky Moves Sideways
  3. “Chance of Rain” – Edo Castro, Phoenix
  4. “Clocks” – Coldplay, A Rush of Blood to the Head
  5. “Open Your Eyes” – Asia, Alpha
  6. “Song for Sarah” – Tomasz Stanko Quartet, Suspended Night
  7. “Broken Heart” – Big Country, The Best of Big Country
  8. “Save It for Later” – Splender, To Whom It May Concern
  9. “Dimstar” – Gay Dad, Leisure Noise
  10. “Try” – Marshall Crenshaw, Field Day

New Co-workers!

Working from home has several perks, but unfortunately I have to share my office at times with various other co-workers.  None seem to last long, and yesterday was no different, but what was different was that later in the afternoon I had four co-workers move in.

from left: Sharon, Monique, Elle, and Jane Doe

They seemed pretty flighty, and I’d be surprised if they return to work tomorrow.

Some of several of my other former co-workers:  a cute Lasiurus bat, about the size of a cellphone (fired — slept during working hours); a male Broadhead skink (left for better work); and a mangy red fox (re-assigned to a neighboring business).

Lasiurus borealis

New Faces

Well, I’ve updated my wantlist to include Topps 1961-1969, but it’s time for a new post.

Beginning two years ago, when going through new cards (probably from my Christmas stocking), I came across a 2008 Carlos Gomez Topps Heritage, pre-Twins trade.  I decided then and there to set him up against my home office’s printer to be my Twins’ good luck charm.

GoGo’s picture on the front of the card looks about as clueless as he was at times that season, but when he hit the ground with three SBs the very first game, we were all beginning to wonder if he was the key piece of the Santana trade. As the season went on, we learned his raw speed on its own wouldn’t do the trick.  Still, he was one heck of a centerfielder.

Well, GoGo didn’t do too badly as a good luck charm, but he didn’t quite get the job done.

For 2009, a new future Twin showed up in my Christmas packs, and Joe Crede joined GoGo as the new office mascot.  I can’t help but think that his 2009 Topps card show him throwing out Nick Punto on a bunt single attempt, just beating his headfirst slide.

Joe’s frustrating injury bugs continued to affect his season with the Twins.  He was one heck of a fielder at third, and flashed some power while he was playing, but unfortunately he wasn’t playing as much as we would have liked.

Well, Joe got the team over the Game 163 hump, but not much further.

So, who would be my 2010 Twins good luck charm?  Well, who else but the Big Guy himself?

This 2009 EnterPlay Fan Pak stand-up Jim Thome card came out of a $.99 discount pack at Target.  I was hoping to find a J.J. Hardy card, but when Bill Smith picked up Thome, well, it was a ready-made good luck mascot card for 2010.

Jim has killed the Twins in the past, but he’s one of those guys that you never had a bad word about.  Well, Jim’s going to be standing by my printer this season, and I’m hoping he’s got the mojo working. And I hope every AB he’s picturing a Twins’ pitcher on the mound facing him.

Double Box Break: Kellogg’s Pop Tarts Cards

Normally I buy a few packs of baseball cards at the beginning of the year and then singles the rest of the year, so actually buying entire boxes of cards is new to me, but I thought I’d jump on the bandwagon and post a box break of my own (two, actually).  Since I hadn’t seen anyone post these yet, I thought I’d do a box break of a couple of Kellogg’s Pop Tarts baseball card sets.

Kellogg’s has virtually flooded the market with these; besides finding them at Target or Wal-Mart, you can also find them at grocery stores, and even convenience marts. Interestingly enough, they do not (normally) have a hobby outlet.

I like how Kellogg’s has gone against convention with their Pop Tarts sets, and given them names like Strawberry, Blueberry, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, etc., and they have several glossy versions (which they refer to as “frosted”).  Product can be purchased in packs of 2, or boxes of 8, 12, or 16 cards.

Kellogg’s Pop Tarts boxes: 16-card glossy Cookies & Creme set; 8-card Brown Sugar Cinnamon set

Packs contain only two baseball cards, and Kelloggs hasn’t been very forthcoming about insert odds (or whether there even ARE inserts).  Nor could I find any kind of checklist for their sets, which severely hampers set collectors.

The Brown Sugar Cinnamon box was the first one I tackled:

two of Kelloggs’ Brown Sugar Cinnamon base set cards (players unknown)

I was sorely disappointed.  The card design is rather plain, with a sawdust-colored background and a pattern of indentations — and the player is obscured to the point of unrecognizability!  The backs are devoid of any stats, photos, or the like.  In addition, the collation was HORRIBLE — I apparently got all eight of the same card, although there were slight variations with each card.  Not happy.

I decided next to take a look at what I got in the 16-card glossy Cookies & Cream box.  While the box gives a cr@pload of information regarding Kellogg’s manufacturing process, again there is no indication of set size, insert odds, or anything else one might REALLY want to know.  Actually, I found it pretty unconventional that they didn’t even include a photo of Derek Freakin’ Jeter on the box, like every other brand of baseball card.

back of Pop Tarts Cookies & Cream glossy
Wal-Mart Black Border card (player unknown)

These cards are the same oversized dimensions as the Brown Sugar Cinnamon cards.  They fit comfortably in an Ultra•Pro four-pocket (see photo below), but as they are very thick, you will find your binders getting full in a hurry.

The background design on the glossy Cookies & Creme set is slightly appealing, but again the players are indistinguishable, and the backs are once more devoid of any stats or photos, and unnumbered.  And all 16 cards were the sameFIX YOUR COLLATION, KELLOGG’S!!  The fact that they were all Wal-Mart Black Border parallels and all appeared to be variations did not placate me AT ALL.

clockwise, from top left: Pop Tarts glossy Cookies & Creme Wal-Mart black border (player unknown); Pop Tarts glossy Cookies & Creme Wal-Mart black border (player unknown); Pop Tarts Brown Sugar Cinnamon (player unknown); Pop Tarts Brown Sugar Cinnamon (player unknown)

Verdict:  While Kellogg’s Pop Tarts sets are different, the product itself is extremely disappointing, especially on a price-per-card basis.  In the long run, I doubt I could even trade my cards, so I’ve resigned myself to the fact that I may end up eating these. Oh, and I got NO TWINS.

Pandora Friday Random 10

First 10 thumbs-up tracks off Pandora, full mix: 

  1. Elevator Love Letter” – Stars, Heart
  2. “The Girls Next Door” – Pat Metheny, We Live Here
  3. “What Was Wrong” – Storyhill, Dovetail
  4. “Young Boy” – Paul McCartney, Flaming Pie
  5. “Indian Summer” – Manic Street, Send Away the Tigers
  6. Sorry About Your Irony” – El Ten Eleven, El Ten Eleven
  7. “When the Heart Rules the Mind” – GTR, King Biscuit Flower Hour (Live)*
  8. “Blue Ridge Laughing (Live)” – Carbon Leaf, 5 Alive!
  9. “Little Boy” – Andy White, Andy White
  10. “Secret Journey” – The Police, Ghost in the Machine

* I was a this concert (Wiltern Theater, LA, 1986); I especially liked the opening act – Steve Howe and Steve Hackett performing acoustic solos and duets!

 A Picture Says a Thousand Words One Word:  w00t! 

AK-Mal and His Wonderous Mauer Time Machine

Since meeting AK-Mal years ago on when I was a regular at StreamingSoundtracks (that is, when my work laptop could properly stream their audio), we’ve met regularly for lunch and a laugh when I’m in Omaha on business trips.

When we got together this last time, we were able to exchange our belated Christmas gifts; me the 2010 Union Pacific company calendar and a 1995 SP John Elway card (AK’s a Broncos fan), and AK three Joe Mauer cards!  Not just any three; two of them were 2002 rookie cards, back when Chairman Mauer’s sideburns were just a glimmer of what they are today.  Schhweet!

clockwise, from top left: 2002 Topps 206 #271 Joe Mauer; 2002 Topps #622 Joe Mauer; 2009 Topps Unique #65 Joe Mauer 

The third was a Topps Unique from last fall, showing the more mature, post-MVP-All-Star-Three-Batting-Title catcher. Thanks, dude!

Here’s a little contest that Play at the Plate is hosting…