As much of a perfectionist as I am about things, I was humbled by two events this past week to take a step back and reconsider my initial goal of a PSA 5 version of 1952 Topps. Basically I realized I was a) in over my head (both time wise and financially) and b) missing an integral part of the desire to share it with my kids. Hang with me.
Event #1 – My neighbor and I are good friends and have known each other for a while. I knew that he collected when he was younger but we never had any real in depth discussions. We were over there house for 4th of July and I mentioned that the kids and I were getting into collecting a 1952 Topps set and he was intrigued. He said, “Actually, about a month ago my dad sent me a bunch of my old cards, we should go through them.” So we pulled them out and had about 2 hours worth of reminiscing. He had never seen a graded card so I went and got mine and he was basically slobbering over the quality of the holder and the general idea, but in the end he said, “But you can’t actually hold the card, can you?” When I said no, the look on his face said it all and made me take a step back and consider if I was missing something.
Event #2 – My wife has been extremely encouraging and patient with me over the past few months. I tested her mettle to the nth degree this past Saturday night as we made our way to a local auction. I had never been to one and was very excited for the experience. I didn’t know if they would have any cards, but we went anyway. Turns out, one of the lots had a near complete set of 1980 and 1985 Topps, both of them in binders, ready to be flipped through and admired close up and personal like. I didn’t win the bid, but as we were leaving, she said, “That’s kind of fun you were able to go through the cards. I bet the kids would like that.”
Long story short, while the kids and I have enjoyed the very-short journey so far, I got ahead of myself. Do I like graded cards…YES! I love them. Something about them makes me giddy. But, have my kids enjoyed the graded cards…a little, but would they enjoy binders with cards that they can actually go through and see more…YES!
So, here at journeyto407 I am changing things up. After talking with the kids, we are still going for a complete set of 1952 Topps…but it will be ungraded to start. Just writing that brings some relief to my heart (and wallet). But because of the extra income we have opened up, we are going to also chronicle our efforts to collect different Topps sets. When I floated this option by them, my son asked, “So how much do the cards cost ungraded?”
“Anywhere from $3-7 – just for 1952 Topps – depending on how good the card is. Other years will be cheaper than that,” I answered.
There little minds went to work and my daughter said, “So we can get probably 4 or 5 cards for what we are paying now for one card?”
I nodded and they both looked at me like ‘duh, Dad, let’s do that instead.’
So, off we go. Won’t be updating on PSA registry (since we won’t have any), but will keep up to date on set status, process of finding the cards, and general family merriment. I didn’t think it was possible, but I’m even more excited than before! Just got off Amazon ordering some of these binders…now I need to get a bookshelf;-)
Oh, and in case you haven’t been, go to http://www.vintagecardprices.com/index.php for pictures and current pricing. Just ran across them this week and it’s a great service!!!
Recent Family Fun: Going to my first ever card show in Chantilly, VA this week with my oldest two and my dad. Looking for ungraded lots of 1952 Topps and hopefully some 1959 Topps. Will update with some pictures next week. Looking forward to a great time checking out the booths and bonding!