Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Nature sucks!

Been a while since posting here but just wanted to pass on my condolences to those lost during the recent Midwest wave of tornadoes.

Parts of my hometown of Washington, Illinois were wiped off the map thanks to these freak storms.

We had some close calls where I live just 20 minutes away as well and parts of my current town got nailed by these asinine weather events.

If it wasn't for my health issues I would have been volunteering help but they turned away a ton of helpers for the onset of relief efforts so they could secure the region, which makes sense.

My brother and his boss and owner of a company there went in with the company's tractor to help out with cleanup. I imagine a lot of people did the same.

Here's what it looks like now:

And here's a before and after:

The two sections were new that are in the middle but the first lot of homes were old and the homes at the top were the same.

Luckily, most people were at church or going to church. Make of that what you want.

The Panthers spirit will rebuild-and remember.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Even an app doesn't like Tim Tebow

Saw this update on my ipod and thought it was amusing.

This app always describes their bug fixes creatively but this was the best one yet.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Hey Mike, touch his head

Go on, do it!

He doesn't mind:

Audio Artistry: Capital Cities - Safe and Sound

I was watching the Cubs game and they came out of the break to a song which a viewer had requested be played.

If you know Len Kasper and his love of music I'm sure he was happy to oblige.

While it might not be audio artistry, most of us who grew up from the late 1970's to the late 1980's recognize a solid, catchy, and most importantly, a melodic tune when we hear it.

It certainly sounds better than what 99% of the muck-a-muck is currently accepted as music sounds like.

Plus, it's just right for baseball under the sun.

And no, that's not Brian Wilson.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Topps team photographs..........wait, who, what, why?

I get that sometimes Topps team photo day has never been a perfectly executed effort on all the team cards but sometimes you have to wonder what the photographer was asked to shoot and what he was ordered to shoot and who was to be included in the photograph:

A perfect symmetrical team shot ruined by an insurance salesman.

I knew I've seen him before

You have no idea how hard it was to find this pic.

Finally googled thumb face guy and there he was.

I was thinking more of an earthworm than thumb.

Also reminds me of Will Sasso from MadTV.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

You were right buddy.......

......this stuff totally works!

Did you see how far that ball went?

ARod, we need to keep this to ourselves. 

ARod(13):Sure Cerv.......uh...I would never sell you out....I MEAN totally!!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Audio Artistry: Owl Eyes - Closure

This is music.

That voice.

That beat.

Those synths.

That video?

Yeah, that video. But it's rather odd.

But the song is gorgeous and I have probably heard it 500 times.

It seems to bring about memories of the '80's for me.

Which is fine because It's a pretty good decade to dwell on.

Listia Loot: 1937 John Player & Sons Motor Cars

This was one of the most exciting items I've ever gotten on Listia.

For 13,500 credits I got 38 out of the 50 cards from the second series of John Player & Sons 1937 Motor Cars.

They are the same size as most cigarette cards from back then.

They are the first cigarette cards I have ever owned.

This same company made sets for hundreds of topics to be inserted into pack of cigarettes.

They were made with adhesive on the back so you could collect them in  an album which you would have bought for them.

I LOVE these cards.

Here's one of them, front and back:

14 horsepower!

Now that's enough to power an ipod.

Sweet ride though, especially 76 years ago.

The backs are pretty informative:

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Topps Without Borders - 1996

I am removing the borders from the Topps designs year by year.

This time it is 1996.

1996 Topps is not a great set but it's good enough for me.

While the colorless second photo of the face on the front is really tacky I do like the backs with a full bodied second photo.

Not as cool as Diamond Vision and the even smaller player photo on the back of 1995 Topps but it works.

Here's the design with border:

And without:

Side by side:

I don't think this looks good at all.

The clean white border really holds the design together but without it it looks messy.

And that face shot is even bigger now.


It does have an early '90's Donruss quality about it though. That doesn't help it much to say that about it.

I would have to say there is no design to the card without the white border.

Coming up next, 1995 Topps.

This one is going to take some work to get right with the squiggly borders.

We'll see.......

That must be terrible, Harry

Having the name probably stinks to start out with but...t, how do you treat the condition?

Shaving must be excruciating!

And the itch......they don't make a cream strong enough for that.

He used to be a tight end but now he is a safety. We're assuming he's be around.

Steroids are one thing.......

.....but hitting it out of this ballpark would require something far more potent than that:

Heck, just making it to first safely would be remarkable.

Not to mention the 125 MPH fastballs.

Every player would be thrown out at the plate as long as the catcher could handle the throws darting down on him.

But every attempted stolen base of second would be successful.

Now the whole Ryan Braun thing makes sense.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Listia Loot: 1966 Topps Ken Henderson?

This is Ken:

I picked him up for 300 or so credits on Listia. Not in great condition but it is a vintage card which was worth picking up. Just because.

Here's the back:

Now Ken might have been an excellent golfer but I can't figure out by looking at his anemic stats how the write up praises him so highly.

Was his dad a senator?

Did he have his own PR group?

Did he have something on the writer? Or, better yet, Topps?

You tell me because I don't get it.

And how do you only hit .179 in the PCL?

I think we need a congressional investigation to get to the bottom of this. Wait, they all skipped town for a bit.

300 credits. And a mystery which will go on long after this card turns to dust.

(Cue Robert Stack dialogue.....and music).

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Hey Rizzo, I'm flying to New York........

You can put me down:

Instant classic Cubs card right there.

Anthony Rizzo said he has a card of Alfonso Soriano hanging in his locker. I wonder if this is the one?

While Alfonso's Cubs career didn't live up to all it could have been it was a pretty solid run.

He was never even taught how to play the outfield until 2012 Spring Training when he told coach Dave McKay he wasn't. So they worked with him in spring training and he darn near came out and won a Gold Glove.

His leg injuries which started early on zapped him of most of his speed but I believe he had 10 stolen bases at the time of his trade to the Yankees.

Yesterday when the White Sox hosted the Yanks marked the first time Arod and Soriano played together. They had previously been traded for each other back in 2004.

I wonder how different Soriano's legacy would have been if he had stayed in Ruth's house?

He was a class act and never had anything bad to say about anyone.

He played hurt a lot and never complained. He was also a mentor to many of the younger Cubs. I wish the Cubs had just let him play his contract out just so he could have been around this year when they called up some prospects in the fall and for next year when the next wave of the franchise is there.

He could have helped them out in an unofficial coaching capacity and also played when they needed him, which, would still have been most everyday.

The whole Cubs clubhouse was watching on the tv when he hit his first home run with the Yankees and they all cheered loudly when it happened.

They said he'll be missed a ton and I miss him a bit already.

Back to the old duds, Sori!

Somebody could have brought them a uniform...........

1992 Bowman is an awesome set in terms of value and looks.

But couldn't Topps have given the photographer some spare uniforms for the newly drafted players?

I know for sure that I wore each of these styles back in the early 90's:

I had the exact same shirt Cepicky is wearing.

Or maybe Topps had their own scouting department and had the dope on these guys and figured it would save money by not giving them unis?

Just wish I had the Mariano Rivera card:

Yeah, Topps definitely should have sent him a uniform.

There are a bunch more of the uniless players in this set but these are all I can take without bringing back the hell of high school.

Maybe Topps will make a 25th anniversary set of 1992 Bowman in 2017 and have everyone dressed in 1990's clothes.

Just imagine the jersey patches.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Guess who has diabetes...............

This guy!

I mean me.

As I referred to in a previous post, I said that doctors had found gallstones and I was going to get it taken care of.

Well, that was a while ago and I am still suffering from this.

But as it turns out after going to the ER today for what I thought was going to be a ruptured gall bladder turned out to be far worse. But not end of world stuff.

It turns out, after a hour long exam of my gall bladder, they only found a few stones and there was no signs of infection, so they opted not to take it out until I spek with a surgeon who is acommadating to those of us with lesser means.

While they said the gall bladder was not causing me pain, my 384 blood sugar level was definitely the source of my pain.

It just type 2 diabetes, which means I can use Metformin to treat it instead of insulin.

After two doses od this medicine my body has responded very favorably to it.

At first I just wanted my GB out, but after thinking about it I realized how dangerous diabetes is.

While mine is not as bad as it could be, I still wish I had not taken to drinking all those liters of Cherry Coke I swore off for three years.

So it looks like my health is going in a better direction, but I would like to say to you please put down the extra cupcake or make it a small soda.

Fuji, I'm still working on your wantlist because I said I would and also it kept my mind doing that instead of thinking of pain.

Hopefully I can offer more and better posts and get back into the swing of life.

Monday, July 8, 2013

My favorite 2013 Topps card

Somebody recently wrote about the same card I'm writing about now. Don't ask me who because I'm so far behind in my feed reader that they start to blur together when you go on a reading binge. I do remember it was about the red bordered version of this card:

I love everything about this card:

  • It's a Cubs card!
  • It's Rizzo
  • The Rookie Cup
  • The look in his eyes, like he knows he got it all
  • The bat posed along the border
  • It's a really clean card
  • He's at the top of my blog!
I'm thinking of chasing down every parallel of this card, except the printing plates.

That's probably about 8-15 cards, with some of them going for some haughty dough like the pink border.

But it would make a great row of cards to line up on a shelf or in a wall display.

Might be a modest goal compared to what many of you are aiming at but that's why the hobby is great.

We all are interested in our own quests and do it because it's fun and it's an individual pursuit, not one we all decide to pursue at once.

I'll be posting as I acquire my little.....triskaidekafecta?

Grade this, PSA!

Technically, this card could never be anything more than fair condition:

Edges: 9.0

Surface: 8.5

Centering: 10.0 Well, you tell me it's off centered!

Corners: -5.0  They aren't there!

Overall: 5.0

I would like to hear how PSA would define these corners and give then anything better than a .5 score.

If this card was a Bryce Harper in this shape and Beckett was doing a video break for Topps we all know this would be a BGS 9.5.

Yeah, B-12 Shots. Right!

This is one of my favorite cards from 1993 Upper Deck:

Juan Gonzalez was just stepping into his belting shoes.

Canseco was already a supreme masher when he joined the Rangers.

Palmeiro was just getting into his ridiculous groove.

Rodriguez was at the beginning of what is now the best defensive catcher's career.

It was and kind of still is a great card.

But we all know what is wrong with this card.

And we all loved watching these guys hit, even though the cloud was just starting to descend on them and many of their contemporaries.

I do want to say that Palmeiro never looked like he was on steroids.

Pudge always had a bit of a cloud over him which greatly intensified when he hit the Tigers' camp having lost 25 pounds of muscle from the previous season.

Never in my life did I think Gonzalez was on it because when he came up he had such an explosive swing and great size already.

Canseco--------HA! Still fun to watch.

I wish 1993 Barry bonds was in the picture just to show the dramatic size increase from then compared to 2001.

Here are the four bulkheads combined numbers:

  • Runs: 5364
  • Hits: 9677
  • 2Bs: 1885
  • 3Bs: 128
  • HRs: 1776(We just celebrated that)
  • RBIs: 5978
  • SBs: 450
Those are ridiculous!

I used to be a big fan of the Texas Rangers, mainly because of Gonzalez.

I still like all of them but Pudge. The fact that it was obvious he used and has been left alone is a something I don't get. His power suddenly disappeared and nobody made a big deal of it. Bench will always be the best because he didn't have to take any thing to be who he was.

I hate Pudge Rodriguez.

But I still like this card.

Fathers and Sons

 In 2000, Topps made a rather unique card:

Three prospects who all had fathers who were extremely productive.

Tim Raines has over 1,500 runs and 800 stolen bases and is eventually going to get the green light to Cooperstown.

Garry Maddox suffered from burns during the Vietnam war and has worn a beard til this day to hide the scars. He was a tremendous fielder, winning 8 Gold Gloves in a row. He was also a very solid hitter.

Gary Matthews, or Sarge, is known to me mostly as the back bone of the Cubs run in 1984 and overall clubhouse guy. A former Rookie of the Year and solid hitter and overall excellent OBP guy.

So did these young guns ever mount a charge to reach anywhere close to what their fathers did?

Let's see:

First the fathers' combined stats:

  • Runs: 3431
  • Hits: 6418
  • Doubles: 1086
  • Triples: 226
  • HR's: 521
  • RBI's: 1812
  • SB's: 1239


And the progenies of these three?
  • Runs: 636
  • Hits: 1090
  • Doubles: 234
  • Triples: 30
  • HR's: 108
  • RBI's: 491
  • SB's: 105

All three are out of baseball now.

Junior Maddux never reached the majors and Junior Raines had cups of coffee over three years. But he was a base fiend throughout his minor league career.

Junior Matthews produced 95% of the numbers above but used steroids to produce most of them. At least the other two did it the right way. Or did they?

I'm sure their dads were and still are proud that their little guys followed them into pro ball.

It just goes to show you many things jump a generation, not just genes.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

I'll show them!

In an effort to prove that he has always been more than a slap hitter and bunter, Juan Pierre has recently begun a strenuous weight program that includes seven hours of upper body lifting every day, huge protein shakes, and the dreams of all those before him who hit home runs only on video games.

It seems to be working:


Where before his jersey was so baggy it looked like the word maximum was on front of his jersey, now you can clearly see the word Miami amongst those Adonis pecs.

And you can tell it's all natural because his head is still shrunk from that witch doctor he fell out of favor with so long ago. It's not the size of Bond's head.

The results so far from all this hard work:

  • 28 hits
  • 1 double
  • 2 triples
  • 34 fly balls out of the infield 
  • 0 home runs
  • 1 fly to the warning track-during batting practice
  • 38 bunts which one hopped the wall!
  • 13 stolen bases-until his massive upper body pulled him off the bag and left him standing upright on his head, resulting in 13 tag outs.

*stats are taken from a secret source

Since July 4th, Juan has quit his strength regimen and gone back to his regular one.

He has hit three grand slams since.


Sometimes, it just takes time

As the Cubs wait for their future to come to fruition, the Phillies have had one of their future core players bust out this year.

Domonic Brown is hitting .281 with 23 HR's and 62 RBI's in the season's first half to catapult himself into the All Star game.

And to think the Phils were thinking of moving him to the Cubs for Alfonso Soriano.

It's nice to see a player whose compass was going South in his first few seasons find North.

Congrats to Domonic.

Now I just have to wait two to four years for one of the Cubs uber prospects to copy what Domonic is doing.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Listia Loot: 1955 Topps Karl Olson

When it comes to baseball cards it doesn't matter who the player is or what team he plays for when the card looks like this:

1955 Topps #72

I don't think there is a better looking card in my collection than this one!

1955 Topps is gorgeous.

Pretty good shape overall, too.

I wonder what the game would be like if the ball was filled with rubber, referring to the cartoon.

It cost me 1,151 credits on Listia but it was never an issue whether I was going to win it or not.

Some things are just too good to pass up.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Jason Heyward 2013 Topps Patch Card

I like the rookie patch cards that 2013 Topps offers but the design is rather ugly:

Meanwhile, the regular patch cards look like this:

Which one would you rather get in a pack?

The regular patch cards really pop when you hold on in your hand.

A complete set of the framed on a wall would be about as good as it gets.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Hey Lenny, you okay?

Yeah Krukkie, it was that Phillie steak and cheese that does this to me.

I'll be okay in a sec.................


I'm good!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Somebody is following me.......... it turns out, it's me.

I was looking through my followers on the sidebar and looked back a few 'pages' and saw that I was following myself.

Anybody else find that they were chasing their own tail on their site?


Thursday, May 2, 2013

The Packages Must Flow........

Anybody never seen Dune?

The title of the post refers to the Spice and how it must flow.

I don't remember much after that, it's been so long since I've seen it.

I do remember Sting trying to look like Billy Idol in the movie.

Anyways, here are the packages I promised I was sending out in the last post.

This is not how they will be delivered:

I don't have enough spice to make it that far. Well, I have some cinnamon and nutmeg and some other, I guess those won't really work.

I guess I will just send them through..............wait for it.......


Just don't use any salt around him. This kills the messenger.

Be on the lookout for packages if I ever promised one.

Just don't step on Gary before he gets there!

Monday, April 15, 2013

Cards owed..... a few of you out there.

I will get those out as soon as my surgery for gallstones is done and I've recovered.

Finally, a glimmer of hope ahead......

I've mentioned on here before about my recent bad health.

Well, after a battery of tests to counter all the crazy symptoms I have had in the last year or so I can finally say with certainty that there is something wrong with me.

It's actually isn't serious so I'll get that out of the way.

It's gallstones. With a bunch of sludge in the mix. Turns out, gallstones can play with about every organ in your body and make you feel really bad.

I'm going to go in for a gallbladder removal some time very soon and hopefully all my chest pains, stabbing liver pain, potassium levels and too many other symptoms to list might just go away after this crappy organ is removed.

Good thing I've been on a large dose of Xanax recently or I don't know how I would have dealt with the constant stress and worries.

Here's to better times!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Listia Loot- 1993 Topps Gold Cubs Team Set

Having somewhat recovered from my computer eating my files and now having a solid start to this Ubuntu install I can say that I will be posting again and here is a nice item I grabbed on Listia recently.

1993 Topps Gold Cubs team set.

I love how these cards compare to the regular ones. What they lack in color they make up for in ornate elegance.

Have a look and decide for yourself:

#3 - Ryne Sandberg

#21 - Luis Salazar

#47 - Bob Scanlan

#74 - Steve Buechele

#101 - Jim Bullinger

#128 - Kal Daniels

#156 - Sammy Sosa

#183 - Greg Maddux

#211 - Doug Dascenzo

#237 - Jose Vizcaino
#265 - Andre Dawson

#292 - Rey Sanchez

#319 - Paul Assenmacher

#346 - Chuck McElroy

#373 - Mike Morgan

#391 - Derrick May

#459 - Derek Wallace

#487 - Jessie Hollins

#533 - Frank Castillo

#563 - Shawn Boskie

#595 - Shawon Dunston

#630 - Mark Grace

#657 - Mike Harkey

#688 - Dwight Smith

#721 - Rick Wilkins

#783 - Heathcliff Slocumb

#812 - Matt Walbeck

Well, it seems some of the cards look great with the gold.

As for the others, it seems to draw attention to some of the awful photos in the set.

But, as a card collector, I love them all none the less.

The set set me back over 1,000 credits, but, since no one knows what value a credit actually has I can say with no regrets that I would rather have this set than some arbitrary online currency. more free stuff on Listia