Monthly Archives: February 2012

Dipping My Toes Back In The Bay Of E (Conclusion)

I can safely say it’s the conclusion, because I’m sure I’ve exceeded my “spousal approval limit”…for the time being. I picked up this potpourri from the same eBay’er; when picking up the Mahomes AU, adding the others what I also needed made shipping reasonable for the bulk.

clockwise, from top left: 1997 Donruss Preferred #71 Paul Molitor; 1996 Leaf Signature Extended Pat Mahomes; 1998 Topps Finest Refractor #203R Ron Coomer; 1998 Leaf Rookies & Stars Great American Heroes #17 Paul Molitor [2354/2500]; 1998 Topps Chrome Refractor #291 Paul Molitor; 1998 Topps Chrome #257 David Ortiz w/Sexson,Ward

But this purchase was a winner, even if it was Luis Castillo. This makes plate #3 for me.

2006 Bowman Heritage black printing plate #168 Luis Castillo [1/1] (plate)

Meanwhile, I mailed out five packages today, so I’m looking forward to some incoming trade packages in the near future…


Dipping My Toes Back In The Bay Of E

I took another dip into eBay the last few weeks, looking to pick up a few inexpensive AU or GU Twins (or even printing plates), and picked up some nice cards at reasonable prices.

clockwise, from top left: 2007 Upper Deck Ultimate Collection Ultimate Ensemble Swatches 2 #ES-SW Johan Santana w/Webb [51/75] (dual jersey); 2011 Topps Allen & Ginter Relic #AGR-JMO Justin Morneau (bat); 2003 Upper Deck Prospect Premiers Star Rookie #P105 Scott Baker (jersey); 2004 Bowman Signs of the Future #SOF-DS Denard Span (auto); 1996 Donruss Leaf Signature Series Bronze Frank Rodriguez (auto); 1996 Donruss Leaf Signature Series Bronze Pat Meares (auto)

But the real treat was filling a hole in my vintage collection by picking up this high # 1962 team card at an excellent price: clean edges, really nice corners, and not too off center.

1962 Topps #584 Minnesota Team

To be continued…

Chopped Brains

Package #1: Over at Sports Cards Ate My Brain Scott had broken up a set of 2011 Topps Limited Factory Set stamped cards into individual teams. For a few Braves cards, Scott set me up with the singles from Twins team. Hopefully Nick Blackburn’s card comes home to roost someday, too.

Package #2: Derek from Tomahawk Chopping – Cardboard and More posted a photo variation card of Nishioka for trade, and after browsing his trade bait page, we exchanged a handful of mostly 2012 cards.

clockwise, from top left: 2011 Topps Chrome Xfractor #59 Joe Nathan; 2012 Topps photo variation #411 Tsuyoshi Nishioka; 2006 Upper Deck Future Stars Green #40 Torii Hunter [258/499]; 2012 Topps Gold #81 Liam Hendriks

Thanks for the swap, guys.

Conjoined Twins

I’m currently watching a recording of a NOVA episode revolving around the separation of conjoined twins joined at the skull. Pretty fascinating, although I’m (intentionally) not paying the closest of attention to the surgical portions. Anyway, it’s somewhat appropriate given the two trade packages that arrived in today’s mail.

The first package was from cardjim, an administrator at Sports Card Arena, where I have been slowly finding my way around. Jim found a couple Twins autos while “dumpster diving” and became my first trading partner from SCA.

1996 Donruss Leaf Signature Series Bronze Matt Walbeck (auto); 1996 Donruss Leaf Signature Extended Chip Hale (auto)

The second conjoined Twins package came from Topher at Crackin’ Wax. The original trade was an autograph swap, Luke Hughes for Scott Baker, but when I threw in a few other cards, Topher felt compelled to also send Jesse as well. Unnecessary, but cool!

2007 Upper Deck MLB Artifacts Autofacts #AF-JC Jesse Crain (auto); 2007 Upper Deck MLB Artifacts Autofacts #AF-SB Scott Baker (auto)

Also, I had just participated in Topher’s BuBoBingo game; although I couldn’t play live, I had a fun time going through the game log to check if my card was a winner (not quite).

Thanks a lot for the trades, guys!

Mail From “Back Home”

This trade was pretty neat: besides the fact that he had some nice Twins cards for trade, Matt from Cardboard Conundrum lives in Fargo, the area where I went to college, and he works just a short Sunday drive from the farm I grew up on. It’s refreshing to trade emails with someone who knows what “Wasted Acres” is, or has (possibly) been to the classic art deco Fargo Theatre. Oh, and he collects Cubs and Penguins cards, of which I had some.

clockwise, from top left; 2007 Upper Deck SPx Winning Materials Bronze Dual #WM-JN Joe Nathan [16/25] (jersey); 2006 Upper Deck SPx Rookie Signatures #152 Boof Bonser [711/999] (auto); 2011 Bowman Platinum Prospects Refractor #BPA-JB Joe Benson (auto); 2010 Topps Chrome #202 Drew Butera (auto)

Matt, keep me in mind if you run into any other Twins items; people are always getting rid of Cubs cards here in Cardinals territory! Thanks again for the trade.

NCIS: Duryea, PA [2012 Topps Series 1]

Time to do the NCIS treatment to a 2012 Topps card; here’s the Series 1 Trevor Plouffe card (and it’s really him, not Drew Butera this time):

2012 Topps #249 Trevor Plouffe

This shouldn’t be too bad. What do we know?

1) Plouffe! is playing shortstop, or maybe second base
2) it’s a day game at the Oakland Coliseum
3) Ryan Sweeney is coming in hard with a take-out slide

Once more this was a no-brainer for the WGOM Citizens.:
– Plouffe! only played four games in Oakland at SS/2B; two in May and two in July
– Sweeney never played on 7/29 and was in no plays at second on 7/30, and Plouffe! played 2B those two July games
– the play never happened on 5/18, but 5/19 looks good. In that game in the bottom of the 4th, Sweeney drew a walk and then was doubled up on a Matsui grounder to second, 4-6-3.
– Minnesota won 11-1, and Plouffe! hit one of the three HRs that the Twins hit that day. They also made three errors.

There you have it — another case solved.

Spookymilk Survivor X — Challenge #16: Afterlife

All good things come to an end…

The challenge for this week: write a story up to 1000 words solely about the afterlife. It’s just that easy. Ha!

Another difficult challenge. Here’s what I ended up with:

The sudden brightness was vertiginous. Edison Carter flung his arms out and braced his footing, feet spread. He took deep breaths and looked around, desperate for something, anything, to provide him with a frame of reference. And in an instant, a tall wall with an ornate metal gateway materialized in front of him, along with an elderly man standing behind an equally ornate white podium.

The man, strands of his longish white hair caught by a light breeze, stared at him with a smile on his face, leaning forward to rest his elbows upon the top of the podium. “Er, Peter?” asked Edison hesitantly after a couple minutes of awe and confusion.

“Peter” looked around, inspecting his surroundings. “Interesting. And also fairly cliché. So Edison, let me guess — did you walk into the light?”

“I don’t remember anything, but yeah, I suppose I might have. Am I dead?”

A slight frown came to “Peter’s” face. “Yes. Well, no, your body is dead. This construct you see is all your creation – including me. Not all that imaginative, really.”

“Are you saying I can just summon up anything with my mind? Wait, do I even have a mind anymore?”

“Peter” smiled again, and with a twinkle in his eyes, nodded. And Edison returned his smile.

Suddenly Edison shot skyward, large white wings sprouting from his back and catching the wind, sending him horizontally across an extensive grassy plain. Tears came to his eyes, partly from the blast of air, but mostly from the shear joy in his heart.

As he rose higher into the atmosphere, he found himself among heaps of cumulous clouds, and he was surprised to find himself soaring with others, spread out at various distances and travelling in all directions. A young girl sailed diagonally down towards him, passed overhead, and then crossed below him on his right before coming out of the barrel roll at his left side. She flew along side him for several minutes, mirroring his movements, and he believed he could hear her giggle from time to time.

After a while, she joined a couple of others flying ahead and to his left, but instead of joining them, Edison chose to glide alone, ever so slowly rolling and descending to the wooded land below.

Edison alit in a clearing along the edge of a small lake. Frogs chirruped quietly along the shoreline, and the smell of pine was so invigorating that he had to turn and admire the trees which stood behind him. He noticed a narrow dirt path between the fern and milkweed, leading to a small dock protruding through the cat tails and tall grass. He also became aware of a well-worn wood bench under a clump birch and facing the lake.

Walking over to the bench, he looked out over the lake to the opposite shore, then noticing the dragonflies lightly touching the water and leaving small circular ripples. He became transfixed by the reflected setting sun and became alert again with the snapping of a striped bass at one of the less careful dragonflies.

Edison sat down on the bench, and after a moment leaned back and closed his eyes. A loon ululated its haunting melody in the distance, and the sun’s fading rays gave warmth to his upturned face.

“Now THIS is commendable,” said “Peter” as he walked down from the path. Edison kept his eyes shut, and the loon rewarded him with a variation of its earlier call.

“You know,” replied Edison , “I never pictured a hereafter like this. As a matter of fact, I never really considered that there was an afterlife at all, now that I think about…”

Took me most of the week to get an idea of what I wanted to write. Edison Carter? Yeah, that would be Max Headroom, for lack of a better name at the time.

Even if I had scored a 5/5 max score it couldn’t have saved Team SPOILER ALERT! from the ax. RESULTS. The judges’ commentary:

K: Uh-oh! Funny ending, although this definitely could have used a quick proofread. I like this idea plenty, but with other afterlife rules being so clear and strong, the straightforward nature of this world doesn’t stand out. 1

DK: Another razor-thin decision. I saw again what seemed like a description without movement until the very end, but in this case that is more intertwined with the effect the ending is supposed to have. I think it’s just a little bit more successful in that regard, and the ending certainly impacted me that way. 3

Well, the inevitable. Thanks again for a good workout, Spooks!

The Crosstown Exchange

First, I just wanted to notify bloggers using Blogger that those of us using WordPress are having a difficult time (or an impossible time) trying to leave comments on your blogs. Really frustrating.

Back last July my St. Louis area counterpart Ike from Ike’s Cards posted a trade bait image of a Killebrew leather nameplate; just so happened that I had a Rogers Hornsby that I could trade for it. Life got in the way, but eventually I sent Rogers and a few others off to Ike, and he returned a great package of Twins cards, including these:

clockwise, from top left; 2011 Topps Series 2 Leather Nameplate #MGL-HK Harmon Killebrew; 2003 Donruss Estrellas Leyendas Del Pasado #LP-8 Rod Carew; 2005 Topps Gallery Artist Proof #29 Justin Morneau; 2008 Bowman Chrome Orange Refractor #195 Denard Span [03/25]; 2005 Topps Gallery #36 Lew Ford; 2011 Topps Lineage Diamond Anniversary #8 Francisco Liriano

Thanks a lot, Ike — I’ll continue to keep my eyes open for other Cardinals cards in the future.