Lots to catch up on…

Sorry about that, folks. Life happened again for a minute. I’ve been sick for most of this calendar year, but I seem to finally be getting better, knock wood. I did some things other than play Skyrim for 260 hours this winter (I’m horrified and amused by this number), while I was convalescing. I’ve even managed to leave the house a few times this month, and of course got into plenty of trouble when I did, so let’s examine the trouble I found both from my house and out in the world!

I bought one more single pack of ’18 Topps on one of my Target runs. Anyone need either of these two inserts?

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This may not look like a Holy Grail comic book to some, but this issue of Adventure Comics completed a run of issues 425-490 for me that I’ve been working on since childhood. In that run is every issue of the original Adventure Comics that happened post-Legion of Super-Heroes and post-Supergirl, but pre-the last 13 issues, which were done as reprint digests. There’s all kinds of great stuff in this run: among others, you’ve got Black Orchid, The Spectre, The Creeper, Deadman, Justice Society of America, The New Gods, Dial “H” For Hero, and all three of the gentlemen featured on this cover.

I got it in the damnedest way, too. I’ve been looking very pointedly for this book for a few years (since I realized it was the last one I needed), trying to get it for a price I felt reasonable (some of the bigger online comics dealers wanted a bit too much for it), especially in bins that flea market and comic show dealers had out, and whiffing on that. So, I’m reading a post on a Facebook comic group I’m in where a guy found a pretty early issue of Adventure (in the 30s numbers-wise), and some wise guy chimes in with “I’ve got #476 if anyone wants that”, totally figuring no one cared. I was instant messaging him so fast, it made his head spin. Because he didn’t want to gouge me too much on shipping, and because he had some other comics to unload, I grabbed a couple more from him…

Mmmmm, first Paul Smith X-Men. I don’t hear this from other people too often, but Paul’s probably my favorite X-Men artist. I’m giving thought to trying, very slowly, to put together a run of Uncanny X-Men from as close to #94 and Giant-Size #1 as I can get (my earliest right now is #107, but I’ve got a run from #128-143, and I’ve also got #109 and #121), through to maybe #200, because that would cover the first year I read it as new issues, during which I found that I didn’t enjoy the current book as much as I did issues #175-back. (I’m of the mind that X-Men started to lose its footing right around where most current fans started to love it, which would be post-#200, so I’m kind of an X-Men hipster. If any of you have ever read Uncanny X-Men #177, I would’ve ended the series right before Mystique gets to Nightcrawler.)

I also got this. In another collecting project (and to let y’all know in advance my comics projects usually go way, way more slowly than my card ones have over the past decade) I’m working on all 4 “team-up” books (The Brave And The Bold, DC Comics Presents, Marvel Team-Up and Marvel Two-In-One), because they were really fun comics that I was always drawn to as a kid. Let’s see how Batman ends up hanging out with Black Lightning, before he ended up hanging out with him a lot! Superman and Sgt. Rock? How’s that work? Aunt May and Franklin Richards hanging out with Galactus? Sign me up! The Thing and The Sandman drinking in a bar? SOLD.

2 more games for if I ever finish Skyrim and don’t just decide to start over to beat the game “the right way”. I’ve been hearing about both Ico and Shadow Of The Colossus for close to 2 decades, so I snagged the first reasonably priced used copy of this collection that I could find. I don’t have a PS4 yet, so I can’t play the latest remaster of Shadow of The Colossus yet.

With Syndicate? I played the hell out of the Atari Jaguar version (an idea that probably horrifies people who played it on PC, but I think the 3DO version was probably even more of a nightmare to navigate), and while the reviews haven’t been great for this update, I’ve been curious, and it was $5 new.

From there, I hit a comic and card show, and while I passed on getting a pic and autograph from Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat (who still looks great, and seemed to be a nice guy, especially to the kids he met), I did scour a bunch of cheapie bins for fun stuff.

These two finished my Top 10 run!

Can you tell that I’m an anthology book junkie?

I’m about two-thirds of the way through a complete All-Star Squadron run now. Earth-2 is also kind of a thing for me.

Onto the cards…

I liked everything I saw from this kid in the postseason. I always hesitate a little to add young, current players to my player collections, but I think he might end up sticking.

Another Dontrelle relic. Cool color scheme. Not the greatest condition, but it was a buck.

#puigyourfriend

If only we’d all known, 5 years ago, that you’d be able to get Puig relics for $2! This is a fun one, too, from those winter cards.

I didn’t get Ricky Steamboat’s auto for $20 (or the $30 pic and auto package combo), but I got a friggin’ Homer Bush autograph for a buck!

Finally gettin’ on the Vladimir Guerrero Jr. board. (Yeah, I know what I said about Bregman, but he’s not second-generation from one of my favorite players of all time.) By most accounts, the kid has a very bright future ahead of him. Let’s hope it works out that way!

From a 5 for a dollar bin? Sure, why not.

Also from the 5 for a dollar bin. Can you believe these monsters vandalized what’s otherwise a pretty decent condition ’71 Topps card? Of course you can. This is available for trade. No, I’m not replacing the Ron Fairly in my set with this one.

Needed this for my ’70 set. To paraphrase Springsteen, it ain’t a beauty, but ‘ey, it’s alright…

I don’t know if I had any Inception baseball before this. Happy to start with a Scherzer.

I am such a sucker for these 2000s legends sets that were really just filler cardboard for autograph chances, but looked pretty nice while doing that. These got me over a third of the way through this one. Especially like Raines, Cey, Santo and Staub in this batch.

And, finally, I got the complete set of these (1991 Comic Images Silver Surfer cards) at my local comic book store. Scanning does absolutely no justice to how insane, psychedelic and 1990s-tastic these cards look, but I’ll show you 3 of my favorites, anyway.

First issue cover!

I still have a very run-down t-shirt with a version of this image on it.

You have to love psychedelic extreme close-ups of Thanos with shiny, shiny teeth.

That’s been my February so far. How’ve you all been?

Three Months

Boy, I’ve been slacking over here.

I will tell you, my readers, that the biggest obstacle to my regular posting is almost always an aversion to scanning things.

Here’s how it goes:

1. I get something new, or come across something old that I haven’t shown off anywhere in a while, if ever.

2. I get excited about it.

3. It goes in a pile.

4. The pile gets bigger.

5. I curse the pile.

6. I eventually scan the pile, but then it takes me forever to write about it or I forget to.

So, in the interest of breaking that trend, let me throw a few things in your general direction from the past 3 months.

Pedro here comes from Bo, which, if you’re familiar, you know that he sent me a lot more than Pedro. Bo is a very frequent contributor to The Pile Of Things I Really Like But Really Don’t Feel Like Scanning Right Now.

I also got a bunch of ’03 Finest from Bo, including this Adam Dunn. They don’t hit it out of the park every year, but there are some gorgeous Finest sets out there.

I should really just bite the bullet and grab and ’89 Score Rookie & Traded set already. I love the cards I have from it so far (especially my PSA 10 Griffey, maybe my favorite of his cards, even including That Card), the photography was really solid for the time, and the card design (border colors, etc.) always seems to pop more than it does on the base ’89 set.

I’m going to limit the view of my Bo trade acquisitions to about 1/1000th of the deal for now (Thanks, though, Bo!), and move onto some other cool pickups, just to spread the love around.

I am up to 7 Eri Yoshida cards, thanks (I believe exclusively) to Ryan, who was super-patient while I took forever to get to his want list.

Ryan also sent me a metric ton of menko, including all of these Tiger Mask cards! If you can’t quite nail down the form factor, they’re slightly larger (and much thicker) than tobacco cards/Allen & Ginter minis. I’ve got doubles of a good number of these, too (lesser condition, but c’mon), so if you’re interested, let me know. Thanks, Ryan!

Another long-in-gestation trade was one I made with Adam from Infield Fly Rule. He threw me a bunch of set fills, largely from his Rockies stash, but the showstopper in the deal was this one…

I love me some Gold Label cards, and I rarely get any ’98s. Thanks, Adam!

Honorable mention at this point goes to Greg at The Collective Mind, who was part of the other trade that had been proposed years ago, and we finally got to when I was cleaning out my inbox this past month. Greg sent me a nice handful of Topps football set fills that, unfortunately, got filed before I could scan highlights of, but they are just as loved and appreciated as the stuff I did scan, I assure you! (Perhaps even more in some regards, because I didn’t have to scan them!) Thanks, Greg!

I also picked up these recently…

I had not noticed, until I scanned them, how oddly cut they were. Still fun cards that I’ve never had any of before. If y’all are interested, and condition doesn’t bother you much (obviously Fleer had some cutting issues, but some also have corners I wouldn’t describe as 100%, and the cards are bowed just a bit from storage, as well…think of them as “not getting submitted to PSA, but MY WORD, MAN, MICHAEL JORDAN FORESHADOWED SPACE JAM BY LIKE 5 YEARS!!!!” cards), I have 8 more complete 6 card sets of these. Let me know if you’re game for a deal.

Even with as much progress as I’ve made on trades of late, it isn’t all I’ve been doing. After a very long stretch of living out of boxes, we’ve just about got the living room done at the not-so-new house now (almost here 2 years already…time flies…). So, I’ve spent a decent chunk of this week reacquainting myself with some old friends…

My (Ninja) golf game still needs some work.

Beat the game yesterday with Chun-Li and Wolverine, without too many continues.

I am so woefully out of practice on this one, but it’s so ridiculously awesome that who the hell cares?

This one, I’m still pretty damned good at. I even started a new Career Mode game just so I’d see how well I played on default stats, and yeah, I still got it.

On the other hand, this one, try as I may, I can’t beat battlefield #6. Halp.

I told y’all I’d be writing about more than cards here, and I meant it. I’ve read a bunch of comics lately, and I’ll eventually go into more detail there, but for now, you can check out my recommended reading in the sidebar of this site.

Oh, and I went on vacation, too.

That’s also probably a story for a longer post, though. In the meantime, enjoy the teaser pics, and I will hopefully see you all back here in less than 3 months!