Wednesday, April 4, 2018
I don't know if I'm like other bloggers, in that I often feel insecure about this little blog of mine.
I've been caught in that web of insecurity lately. I haven't felt much connection with the blogging world. I haven't had many incoming or outgoing packages. I haven't had a ton of reaction to my last few posts. I haven't felt much of that joy I usually get on my off nights when I run to the computer and whip up a post with a Diet Coke at my side.
Of course, I've been doing this long enough to know that most of this is all in my head. Believe me: it's not you, it's me. I've also been doing this long enough to know that blogging has its natural ebbs and flows. But in the ebbs I sometimes feel insecure. The thoughts come: Do I still enjoy blogging? Have I said all there is to say? Does anyone even care anymore?
I'll admit, there is an urge, however faint, to simply pack it all in during times like these: sometimes I consider the possibility of retiring to the ranch and joining the glorious world of Blog Readers out there.
This, of course, is nothing more than an urge: after the ebb usually comes a flow that wipes out any thought of shutting down the blog (and the brief period in which I did retire the blog a couple years ago was an unhappy time).
But should I ever decide to join the rank of Blog Readers, I know one thing won't be lost: the ability to assemble masterful trade packages. Readers in the past have been some of my favorite trading partners, and that trend continued with some packages I received from a couple new members of their ranks.
The first comes from Reader David who, in addition to crossing off a longtime Dime Box Dozen need with the Cowboy Nolan Ryan at the top of this post, also provided a nice mix of oddballs and recent wants alike with this quartet.
I always, always, always enjoy receiving boxed sets in trades -- doubly so if I've never heard of the box set in question, as was the case with this compendium of 1997 UD Home Team Heroes.
These oversized oddities feature pairs of teammates on a silver backdrop of said players' home ballpark (or at least their home ballparks as they were in 1997, many of which have since been renamed or no longer exist).
All these years of reading and writing later, there's still nothing quite like the discovery of a new oddball set I never knew existed -- and thanks to David, I was able to feel that thrill once more.
Reader Robb also reached out to me recently saying he had some cards to send me (and as a blogger, is there any better email to get than an I'm-sending-you-some-cards email?).
First up was this terrific Mr. Cub SP from last year's Update which features some of the greenest grass I've ever seen on a baseball card.
There's no way you'd be able to tell from the scan, but these are actually Berger's Best reprints.
The cards they reprint these days seem to be getting newer and newer which, in turn, makes me feel older and older.
More ticks off the ol' want lists from Robb.
One of the finest insert sets of 2017.
Two of my favorite baseball writers in the media today from last year's MLB Network insert series, a set build which was at one time a high priority but has since turned into somewhat of an I'll complete it when I complete it kind of thing.
A page of 2017 A&G -- and somehow that centerpiece is just one of two cards William Shatner received last year.
I'm quite shocked by how hard it's been to find these Dudes at card shows and the like. I almost never see them, and when I do they're priced way above what I want to pay. Which makes it all the more exciting when people like Robb send me Dudes like German Cyclist Dude here out of the blue.
Maybe readers like David and Robb continue to put together such excellent trade packages because, unlike me, their minds aren't preoccupied with such silly and mindless insecurities of blogging life. And maybe, in some backwards way, a post about insecurity helps shed some of the insecurity, because here I am, eager to write, excited to show off some great cards I've received, all with a Diet Coke at my side.
Perhaps this is why I've chosen the life of a Blog Writer: the ability to vocalize thoughts about something as trivial as baseball cards to a select group of select people who enjoy the trivialities as much as I do.