As collectors, I think we all have certain corners of the hobby that, for whatever reason, we've overlooked.
I don't know that I've ever had a specific vision for this blog, but I suppose one thing I've tried to to is throw a floodlight on those hidden corners. But I'm happy to admit I have blind spots of my own. A lot of them. Case in point: I've been seeing a whole lot of Venezuelan card talk on Twitter lately, and a post from fellow blogger Nick really pushed me over the edge in asking myself Why don't I have more of these?!?!
I don't know that I've specifically chosen to ignore Venezuelan cards - I think a long time ago I told myself Oh, those are too expensive and just kinda banished them to the long list of things I can't afford. But Nick's post got me looking again, and while I didn't see any Topps Venezuelans that jumped out at me on eBay, they're nowhere near as pricey as I long thought they were.
By accident, however, I did manage to secure a couple adjacent Venezuelan stickers in my long-overdue travels - including this excellent Jose Cardenal which is the best card I've bought in a while.
Also grabbed this Davey Lopes sticker from the same 1972-73 Venezuelan set, which is doubly interesting because it predates his Topps rookie card.
I paid a shade under four bucks each for the pair - so maybe my younger self was right in thinking Venezuelans aren't cheap enough to buy in bulk, but they're definitely good for a special treat every now and then.
Given those recent pickups, I figured was as good a time as ever to cobble my meager Venezuelan collection into a post.
I somehow don't think I've ever shown the Fidrych on the blog before - it's probably the toughest part of my quest to own every darn version of that card (think I'm only missing the OPC at this point). I'll admit I didn't even know Venezuelans kept going into the '70s until I bought that one - nor did I know they stretch all the way back to the late '50s! (as I learned from Nick's post) - but it's a treasure to have in my binders.
The Concepcion was my first Venezuelan card - found it for 50 cents at a show years ago - and I remember not knowing what the hell it was at the time.
Part of the allure of Venezuelans is that I don't know how any of them survived in the first place - I remember reading once that they were issued with glue to be pasted into an album.
Not surprisingly, they're hard to find in good shape, and thanks to some subpar condition (to say the least) I got these from a card show bargain box for a buck a piece.
And yes, that '67 Staub was physically torn in half and repaired at some point...
...and somehow the back looks even worse than the front (not that I care a lick!).
My oldest Venezuelan is this '62 Jimmy Piersall that I bought on a lark for $10 at a card show a few years ago.
I think I grabbed it thinking more along the lines of Well, here's something I'll never see again more than any specific desire to own an older Topps Venezuelan.
The front looks like your standard '62 Topps fare, but the back features exclusively Spanish text.
I suppose this discovery came at a good time since I'm heading to The National in less than a week. I don't usually go into card shows with specific goals in mind, but now I'm thinking a few Venezuelans might be in the offing if the prices shake out.
It's the least I can do to offset a long history of ignoring our cool Venezuelan counterparts.