Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Vintage Cards = Great Steaks

I am still basking in the afterglow of winning this 1953 Satchel Paige card from Cleve’s auction last week.  The lovely wife wanted to know why I didn’t just stick to making less frequent, but nicer purchases such as this Paige card, rather than frequent, yet small purchases of new cards and bulk junk wax.  After all, cards like this, and the T206s I occasionally get are the ones I am most proud of and like to show off to others.  If I would cut out the modern stuff and goodie boxes, I could get more of the nice vintage, was her point to me.    It’s a good point, but I think I can explain why I want to maintain my scattered purchase patterns in a way that makes sense:  Baseball cards are like meals.
From my standpoint, here is how I see types of cards and their food equivalents:

Vintage Cards= Great steak at a great restaurant-   This is my ultimate favorite meal.  I have to be prepared for it, and plan ahead, and the anticipation of it is part of the fun.  I’m not talking about a steak at Applebees or Colton’s either.  I’m talking about Ruth’s Chris, or Herman’s in Fayetteville (I know 99% of you don’t know what that is).  When I get a nice vintage card, even if I have to spend some for it, I get immense satisfaction that doesn't dissipate quickly.  I feel like I own a piece of history. 
But even if money were no object, I don’t think I would want steak every day.  In some ways it would diminish the satisfaction of the special times when I do have it.   Same with vintage cards.  It’s special when I land a big one because it doesn’t happen often. 
Hi End Cards and Relics/Autos = Lobster -  This is what I eat the least of, but when I do get it, I love it.  It can be pricey, but it’s appropriate for special occasions.  Relic Cards, Autos and sets like Topps Sterling fall into this category for me.  They’re pretty much on the same level as a good steak/vintage card.  It just depends on what mood I’m in.  More often than not, I’ll choose the steak.
Etopps/ Heritage/ A&G/ Bowman Platinum = Five Guys/Qdoba-  These are the types of restaurants we go to most of the time if we are eating out.  They are not expensive, but to me they are a step above mass fast food chains.  The food is always wonderful.  Etopps, Bowman Platinum and A&G fall into this category for me.    
Topps Base/Bowman Base/Lineage=  McDonalds/Taco Bell.   I am not a McDonald’s snob.  Every now and then a plain old Quarter Pounder, Fries and a Coke hits the spot.  It’s inexpensive and quick.  It’s available everywhere. So are Topps base cards.  These cards are the backbone of my, and likely most other collections.
Junk Wax/ Goodie Boxes = Candy   There is absolutely no value to candy other than it's fun, tastes good and there are varieties for everyone.   It's cheap and all over the place.  The junk wax binders and boxes I often buy at Cleve’s auctions fall into this category for me.  I absolutely do not need them, but they taste good and sometimes they are sitting there for pennies, begging me to buy them.
In my mind this all makes total sense. 
Note:  For the record, I would choose whatever the lovely wife cooks over any of these options 100% of the time.  I am using the examples above strictly for illustration purposes only.


Wes Moore the former JBF said...

Best post I've read this week!

Ryan G said...

Wow, you thought that out too much! But I think it's a good analogy, and one I follow fairly closely. I think some people have been jaded by too much product and the hi end cards and hits are all they think are worthy of owning. And then there are the people who get so much vintage that a well-loved card won't cut it - they need their vintage at PSA 7 or better.

I used to enjoy McDonalds, and they still have the most awesome fries (though In N Out give them a run for their money, and the new Wendy's ones aren't so bad either). But maybe it's having quality burgers - I've lost interest in a Mickey D's double cheese. I'm kind of sad, because they're the closest place and they're open 24/7.

The Lost Collector said...

Awesome post, Nap! Share it with your wife before heading to Cleve's so she can be prepared for the color of the night. Kids, he has a twinkle in his eye, it's a Code Red.

The Lost Collector said...

By the way, I love Qdoba.

moremonkeys138 said...




Justin McLeod said...

Quite possibly the greatest post ever! Great job!

Cheap Card Collecting said...

Nice nice, I have to say that a lot of relics are extremely cheap though.

Eric L said...

Well said. I'll probably borrow this concept for my blog (after giving full credit to you for the idea, of course) since I haven't picked up anything worth blogging about for a few days.

Napkin Doon said...

Thanks for all the nice comments! I was not expecting that response. Eric, feel free to steal shamelessly!