30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Monday, November 2, 2015

Cardboard Collecting Crossroads

Procrastination is like a credit card:
it's a lot fun until you get the bill.
-Christopher Parker

People purchase sports cards for different reasons.  One of my friends buys cards to flip to his flea market customers.  My other friend only buys cards to support his favorite team.  I buy cards for a bunch of reasons.

I'm a team collector.

Set collector.

Player collector.

Rookie card collector.

Autographed card collector.

Vintage card collector.

And an insert card collector.

Collecting so many things can get a little overwhelming at times.  I'm constantly thinking about which direction I want to go in terms of this hobby, because I can see the collecting crossroads quickly approaching.  And when I finally reach it, I'll need to make some decisions on what I want to do.

Who and what will I continue to collect?  What do I sell or trade off?  When will this all occur?

As of right now, I don't have definite answers to any of those questions, but it's just another thing that currently sitting in the back of my mind.  And honestly... it's kind of been something I've been avoiding for a few months now.

Kinda like these packages I owe many of you...

The good news is I've packaged these up and should have them shipped out by Wednesday or Thursday.

Unfortunately... I don't really have any plans on restocking my trade bait anytime soon.  I literally have hundreds of autographs and memorabilia cards that need to be organized... but I have absolutely zero motivation to do it.

Two years ago... I looked forward to receiving and sending out care packages.  But between a crazy work schedule and major procrastination on my part, it led to a huge list of people I owed.

And if you're one of those people... I owe you a huge apology.  Most of the cards I'm shipping out were purchased over the summer and could have been sent in early September.  But I was lazy.  And the more time that passed... the more I felt guilty... and the more I avoided going into my office to build everyone's packages.

Finally... I got off of my fat butt and took care of business.  Well... I took the first step at least.  The next step is taking the packages to the post office, which I promise you I will do.  After that... I have some decisions to make.

This hobby is very important to me and I have no plans on leaving it.  With that being said... something is going to change.  But at this moment in time... I'm not exactly sure what I'll do.

Once again guys... I hope each of you whom I owe packages to... will accept my sincere apology.  Happy Monday and sayonara!


  1. I have the same existential questions about collecting though maybe the best thing to do is to step away a little, but not completely forget about the hobby.

    Know what you have so the cards don't get jumbled up and you have the idea of the cards that maybe worth something to move if that is direction you may want to go - while still building on and collecting the cards types you've outlined as your favorites.

  2. Over the past couple of years I've been doing a fair amount of navel-gaving and toenail-contemplating about what I want my collection to be (beyond smaller and more focused). It's been an ongoing and evolving process, but all I know for sure was that what I had been doing was unsustainable. While I still don't know exactly where I'm going, I have a better idea of where I'm *not* going, and that works for the short term.

  3. Don't worry about it, I haven't sent out my Z-Zaps in months. My next ZZapping spree probably won't come until December.

    And I think about the same questions you brought up as well. So much so that I've been working on a blogpost where I question my collection and my own existence. I've been writing it for months and yet it still looks like some halfassed essay some stoner wrote for his biology class the night both.

  4. Budget issues aside, (none of us is Trump), it's so easy these days to aquire collectibles that we're all like the proverbial kid in a candy shop. I've cut way back this year (I'll address that in my year end goals assessment.) Still, every time I open my Ebay account I'm either reminded of players I've thought about collecting or seeing new things that entice me. Not to mention the collections I'm already deep into. My point is that it can be really hard to stay focused.

  5. I try to be strictly a player collector, but still find my self being sucked in by "deals" that are too good to be true. Or I see them and think, "I can flip that." Unfortunately, for me, flipping is not a short term thing. Its more like I buy something for $20 that I can eventually break up and flip for $50 over the next half decade. What I need to start asking myself is, "Is flipping that lot of random minor league crap over the course of the next 5 years really worth the effort?"

    At this point, I'm thinking 250 cards out for every 1 card in is a better plan. I want to keep growing my player collections, but I really don't need to keep accumulating all this junk in the mean time. Anyone need 3 unopened boxes of 1991 Line Drive AAA cards?

  6. whatever you decide, it will be the right thing to do. i've recently re-focused on my garvey collection, and have added several cards i was missing - cards that i might have not pursued had i been focusing on some of the broader parts of my collection.

    oh, and i'm looking forward to receiving that package in the photo you posted!

  7. Two years ago I hit that crossroad and even now I am still trading off and selling off what I decided to clear out of my collection. I went kind of nuclear and decided to focus on only 5 athletes (2 are secondary) and besides the occasional Settle or Phoenix team everything else is sellable/tradeable.

  8. I deal with that all the time. I collect all these types but find ways to limit myself to 1975 related themes (btw if anyone's got anything 1975 baseball related you want to part with let me know).

  9. I like what I see in that Griffey insert :D
    I recently hit that kinda rut. I think it's a defining moment in collecting. I think you will get back on the saddle soon with everything :)

  10. My thoughts sometimes turn negative about collecting, but usually if I dig deep it is because of some outside stressor. I'm sure after a little break you will feel refreshed again!

  11. Laurens - I'm considering taking a step back... possibly stepping away. But I'd never actually leave the hobby altogether. I've been doing this way to long to quit now.

    shlabotnikreport - sounds like you and i are in very similar situations... but i'm a few steps behind you. still need to figure out where i'm not going.

    zippy - lol... always look forward to your comments. maybe when you publish your post, i'll use some of your stoner knowledge to help me figure some of my own stuff out.

    hackenbush - very true. which is why i think i need to just retire certain collections altogether and narrow down others. however... it's a marathon and not a sprint. for me... i've gotta take my time and look at the long term.

    jason - i think i do the exact same thing with more than half of my flea market finds. i keep thinking that when i retire in 23 years, i'll have one helluva eBay store. problem is... will eBay even be around by then? will anyone want these bobble heads? as for those line drive cards... sounds like an awesome saturday afternoon.

    gcrl - thanks for the support. best of luck on the garvey project and your package will be headed out today.

    corky - i'm so jealous. that's exactly where i'm headed or where i want to be headed at least.

    steve - very cool year to collect. one of my favorite topps sets of all-time

    sport card collectors - i hope so. it's definitely something i've dealt with in my past. i've stepped away a few times... but i always return.

    matthew - you're absolutely right. there are a few things i'm dealing with right now... and they no doubt have played a role in my dilemma.

  12. Received my package today, and the timing couldn't have been better. I was filling a Sportlots order and realized I was out of bubble mailers. As soon as the mail truck drove by, I immediately emptied your mailer, packed out my Sportlots order in it, printed out a ShipNow label and sprinted across the street to drop it in my neighbor's mail box for the mail truck to pick up when it comes back down the other side of the street.

    Oh, and thanks for the cards, too!

    1. Lol... glad you were able to recycle my padded envelope. Hope you could use the cards.