Believe it or not, starting a blog has forced me to become a more organized collector.
I know "organization" is probably one of the last things that come to mind when you see what I collect, but things were a lot worse in my earlier days. I had no want lists and pretty much had to rely on my (imperfect) memory to know what I had and needed. And forget about setting my sights on specific cards: I already have enough to remember!
One of the first and greatest innovations I stole from the blogs was the advent of a small want list of specific cards, a la NO's "Nebulous 9" or Gavin's "Desperate Dozen" -- Gavin, in fact, recently sent me a hit from my own Dime Box Dozen with this '97 Topps Tony Gwynn, a common yet gaping hole in my Mr. Padre collection.
While Tony would've made me happy all on its own, Gavin threw in a few friends to accompany him to the Midwest.
I always love adding a new Big Mo to my collection, and that's my first Public Enemy card (can't say I'm much of a rap/hip-hop fan, but they're probably my favorite of the genre).
Gavin being Gavin, a couple excellent customs fell out of his latest envelope as well, honoring the two greatest oddball brands in the history of oddball brands (BRAVES HOYT!).
Greg of "The Collective Mind" also recently shot down a Dime Box Dozen suspect with this '83 Donruss Gene Garber.
It's not the most enthralling card ever made, but it was an odd gap in my Garber collection that I couldn't wait to patch up.
Also not one to send a Dime Box Dozen dude out all on its own, Greg threw a couple insert needs into the mix as well.
A gaggle of Hometown Heroes.
Here's a dilemma: what happens when a guy you collect turns out to be a total dunce?
I've collected Marlon Byrd since I got back into baseball cards over a decade ago. I considered dropping him from my catalog the first time he got busted for PEDs in 2012, but since he seemed apologetic enough, I let bygones be bygones and continued to chase his cardboard. But then he got busted a second time in 2016 and promptly retired. And that was the last anyone ever heard of Marlon Byrd.
So while I'll still keep stuff like this auto/jersey combo from Greg, I'd be lying if I said it didn't leave a bit of a sour taste in my mouth.
Finally comes a PWE from "mr haverkamp," a prolific blog reader and a guy who I'm pretty sure I traded with during my forum days.
And just like Gavin and Greg before him, mr haverkamp managed to knock out a treasured Dime Box Dozen with this Rizzo here. This was one of Rizzo's first Cubs cards (I'm pretty sure that's an airbrushed Padres jersey), and it came out before I started collecting him.
To think: a time when I didn't collect Anthony Rizzo!
Dime Box Dozens must not like to travel alone: mr haverkamp sent along a few other needs along for the ride as well.
Last year's A&G had quite a few awesome insert sets, but it's been slow going as far as building them goes.
I only have about a quarter of the Dudes from 2017 A&G, and I think this snippet from A Tale of Two Cities is only the second or third from the "Required Reading" series I own -- an insert set pretty much made for me since I was an English major in college (chances are you'll find me reading when I'm not playing with my baseball cards).
Perhaps the most fun I get out of having a Dime Box Dozen list is crossing off those cherished cards I'm lucky enough to receive from fellow traders like Gavin, Greg, and mr haverkamp -- yet new wants always await.