Monday, December 31, 2012

My 2012 Report Card

One year ago, I created my 2012 Hobby Goals.  It's time to see whether or not I completed any of them.  Since I'm a teacher, I figured I'd give myself a grade for each goal and calculate a Hobby GPA for myself.  Let's check out my results:

1.  Create a cardboard budget and stick to it.  F

I kept track of my cardboard budget for a little over a month.  In other words, I failed.


2.  Continue to focus on singles and sets, instead of packs and boxes.  B+

Did I buy any boxes this year?  Yes.  But, I'd estimate that 95% of my money was spent on singles, supplies, and complete sets.


3.  Complete at least one of the sets I'm currently building.  A+

I ended up completing three sets in 2012:  1984 Topps baseball, 2008 Finest Topps TV Autographs, and 2008 UD Masterpieces football Captured on Canvas.


4.  Shorten the length of my articles, but maintain an average of three posts a week.  A-

There were a few long winded posts (including this one), but for the most part I think I met this goal.


5.  Continue the tradition of running my contest this summer.  A

Another summer... another contest.  Mission accomplished.


6.  Add five new sports card trifectas to my collection.  A

I completed exactly five new trifectas in 2012:  Nate Robinson, Mark Fidrych, Kirby Puckett, Chipper Jones, and  Fernando Valenzuela.


7.  Add a 1909-11 T206 card to my collection.  F

I have several cards targeted on eBay, but I never found one at a reasonable price.


8.  Stay positive and have fun, while maintaining and building more friendships with fellow bloggers and collectors.  A

These past twelve months have been rough, but one of the bright spots in my life is this hobby.  I truly appreciate the friendships I've made through this blog.

Okay, let's go ahead and see what my GPA is for 2012...


2.916 GPA

Oh no!  My parents would not be happy campers if I brought these grades home.  But I guess that's what happens when you earn two F's.  Tomorrow I'll be posting my 2013 Hobby Goals.  Let's just hope I'm able to bring up my Hobby GPA.

Happy New Year's Eve!  Stay safe and thank you to everyone who supported my blog in 2012.  Sayonara!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Saturday Night Five: Favorite Wide Receivers

Calvin Johnson is arguably the best wideout in the game and Jerry Rice is hands down the greatest of all-time.  But one thing is certain... neither of them will be making an appearance on my favorite receivers list anytime soon.

In fact, there's a chance that my list might leave you scratching your heads.  Just remember... it's not who I think are the most talented, it's a list of my favorite wide receivers.

Okay, let's start with a few that couldn't crack the top 5:




Honorable Mention:  Antonio Freeman, Johnnie Morton, Hines Ward, Tim Brown, Brian Blades, and Lynn Swann (I can't believe I don't own a single Swann card).

Alright... now let's get down to business:

#5 Donald Driver


Driver is in his 14th season with the Packers and is holds the franchise record for receptions and receiving yards.  I admire loyalty and Driver has stuck with them through thick and thin.


#4 James Lofton


As a kid, Lofton was my second favorite wide receiver and for many years he held the same Packers records that Driver holds today.  He's one of the guys who's featured in multiple PC's:  Green Bay Packers and Stanford Cardinals.


#3 James Jones


Jones is currently my favorite Packers receiver, because he's from the Bay Area, went to my alma mater (SJSU), and plays on my favorite team.


#2 Robert Brooks


Leroy Butler may have invented the Lambeau Leap, but Brooks was one of the people who made it popular.  Injuries may have cut his career short, but he was a tough guy who always gave his teammates and fans 110%.


#1 Steve Largent


Largent holds nearly every Seahawks receiving record and at his time of retirement was the all-time leading receiver.  He was my favorite player when I was growing up and although there are other players who have come and gone throughout the years, Largent is still and always will be my favorite wide receiver.

Okay... your turn:
Who are your five favorite wide receivers?

Happy Saturday and sayonara!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Grown Men Don't Play With Toys!

Now that Christmas has come and gone, I'm sure many of you are still cleaning up as the children of the household play with their new toys.  Oh the joys of being a kid.  

What I wouldn't give to be able to open up the latest addition to my Kurt Suzuki PC:


But I can't and I won't... because I'm told that grown men don't play with toys.  Oh well, it'll make a find addition to my Oakland A's shelf in my office.

If you're wondering what you're staring at... it's a 2012 Generation One Oyo of my favorite former Oakland Athletic.  What's an Oyo?  Well, they're sports mini-figures with rotating forearms, bending knees, and have the ability to hold a bat or glove.

In other words... they're overpriced LEGO figures.  But if you're addicted to sports memorabilia like myself, then they just might appeal to you too.

Happy Thursday and sayonara!

Attack of the Spam!


My blog has recently been attacked by a ridiculous amount of SPAM, so unfortunately I'm forced to turn on the word verification for future comments.

Sorry guys... I tried my best to ignore their dumb comments, but when they start overwhelming my mailbox... something has to give.

Happy Thursday and sayonara!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

My version of the 12 Days of Christmas...

On the twenty-fifth day of December
I'm showing cards to thee...

Twelve game-used Gwynns...



Eleven sensational Sharks...



Ten vintage Munsons...



Nine of my favorite pitchers...



Eight alluring Asians...



Seven Suzuki's a-signing...



Six Packers a-passing...



(A man with) Five Golden Rings...



Four sensational Sea-birds...


Three short men...



Two Kevin Loves...



And a stupid Christmas card featuring me!



Merry Christmas to all... and to all a good night!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

There is a Baseball God...

And he's answered my prayers.  Earlier this week, the Oakland A's finally filled their shortstop void by signing Hiroyuki Nakajima to a two year, 6.5 million dollar contract.

Since Kurt Suzuki was traded to the Washington Nationals in August, I have struggled to find a new favorite Oakland Athletic.  I know that Nakajima hasn't played a single game for them yet, but I think my problem has been solved.

Here's the only card of Nakajima currently in my collection:

2009 Konami Baseball Heroes #14

This card was part of the huge care package given to me by Ryan over at This Card is Cool!  last month.  If you haven't done so already, I encourage you to head over there and check out his sports card blog.

Thanks again Ryan and welcome to the Athletics Mr. Nakajima!

Happy Sunday and sayonara!

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Domo Arigato: Ian @ All About Cards


Are you looking for card product reviews, video box breaks, or cool interactive contests?  If so... look no further and head over to All About Cards.

Panini recently sponsored a cool contest over at the aforementioned blog and I was fortunate enough to walk away with these cool prizes:

2012 Panini National Convention Kings VIP Set


4x 2012 NFL Player of the Day Packs


2012 Panini New York Giants Super Bowl XLVI Set

If you're interested in seeing what I pulled from the four NFL Player of the Day packs, then head over to A Pack to be Named Later.  I'm keeping a few of the cards, but will be giving the rest away.  Check out the APTBNL post for details.

Happy Saturday and sayonara!

Blog Trade #26: My Cardboard Mistress

I haven't been a very active trader since before the start of summer.  But as we head into the heart of winter, things are starting to heat up.  I've pulled off a pair of blog trades and another one with a reader in December alone.  Hopefully the trend continues.

This is the second time Spankee and I have swapped cardboard.  The first time took place over two years ago and mainly focused on baseball cards.  This time our trade revolved around tennis cards.

He was interested in the Rafael Nadal insert I pulled a few weeks ago out of my tennis box and from there we ended up working something out that would benefit my Japanese PC and Stanford PC:

2007 Ace Authentic "Materials" #1


2011 Upper Deck Sweet Spot "Autograph" #47


I also traded for this Brandon Belt autograph that will either be traded to one of my local buddies or be given away to one of my students who's a San Francisco Giants fan.



In addition to those three cards, Spankee threw in three bonus cards... which are all going straight into my PC's:



Thanks for another successful trade Spankee.  Have a happy holiday season and sayonara!

Friday, December 21, 2012

I believe the children are our future...

The new year is just around the corner and I'm looking forward to a positive, happy, and productive 2013.  Because truth be told... 2012 was emotionally one of the roughest years of my life.  But thankfully, I had three great outlets that helped me get through the year:  friends/family, this hobby & blogworld, and my job.

I'm a middle school teacher and I can't imagine having a better job.  I teach a class the focuses on building character and motivating students to become productive members in our society.  And I have to say, that for the most part... my students have great attitudes and are bound for greatness.

One of my students recently won our district art contest and during his free time in class, he drew this sketch for me:


What's insane is the amount of time it took him to draw it.  He started it last Friday and gave it to me on Tuesday.  However, he spent less than 30 minutes on the actual drawing.  It's truly amazing the talent some people are blessed with.

It's amazing how artistic some of these students are.  Here are two more pieces that were given to me by students in the past year:



Some people were born to write.  Others were born to play sports.  I'm not sure if any of the above students will become famous authors or athletes, but if they decided to focus on art... sky's the limit.

Happy Friday and sayonara!