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Go Back   Net54baseball.com Forums > Net54baseball Postwar Sportscard Forums > Postwar Baseball Cards Forum (Pre-1980)

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  #1  
Old 02-28-2015, 10:15 PM
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Drew Ekb@ck
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Default If I only knew then....

I know this question is completely hypothetical and will very greatly based on any one persons age but I think most, if not all of us, have thought this before.

If your current self could go back and tell your past self one thing about a hobby decision that you didn't make what would it be? I think it would be fun to see the responses. List what year you would go back to and how old your past self would have been.

For me I think I would go back to 1986 and tell my fourteen year old self that buying all those baseball packs won't pan out as buying the same among of Fleer basketball packs. I remember seeing them on the shelf but I so badly just wanted my beloved Mets cards instead.

What would you do?

Drew
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Old 02-28-2015, 10:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by almostdone View Post
I know this question is completely hypothetical and will very greatly based on any one persons age but I think most, if not all of us, have thought this before.

If your current self could go back and tell your past self one thing about a hobby decision that you didn't make what would it be? I think it would be fun to see the responses. List what year you would go back to and how old your past self would have been.

For me I think I would go back to 1986 and tell my fourteen year old self that buying all those baseball packs won't pan out as buying the same among of Fleer basketball packs. I remember seeing them on the shelf but I so badly just wanted my beloved Mets cards instead.

What would you do?

Drew
I'd go back 8-9 years and tell 11-12 year old me to write to a bunch of the old time players who I had always wanted to write to but never got around to it. I don't just mean the Bob Feller's and Dom Dimaggio's, but I had wanted to write to Lou Brissie and Bert Shepard about their war experiences, and to Phil Cavarretta, Duke Snider, Marty Marion, Preacher Roe, Virgil Trucks, Andy Pafko, Gus Zernial, Mel Parnell, Ernie Banks, Sam Chapman, Eldon Auker, etc but that ship sailed while I was stalling and putting it off. I did write to a handful of old timers, but not nearly as many as I would have liked to.
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  #3  
Old 02-28-2015, 11:02 PM
begsu1013 begsu1013 is offline
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i'd go back to the summer of '89 and say "bobby, that upper deck jerome walton card is not going to be worth raking and bagging that yard of leaves, trust me".
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  #4  
Old 02-28-2015, 11:40 PM
mrmopar mrmopar is offline
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I'll keep it simple and not assume that I use this to make myself a multi-millionaire:

In 1978, I tell myself to start seriously collecting autographs and vintage cards as best as my current budget allows. I would get autographs at games in the 80s, but that was it and I would also buy an occasional 1950s card and even added a 33 Goudey in the 80s, but never really tried to get the T cards and other goodies until much later.

To keep it even simpler…

I tell myself in 1984 to buy the Fleer Update set. I bought complete sets every year, but never bought the traded sets other than 83 when Garvey was in the Topps set and then started buying them as well around 85-86.
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Old 03-01-2015, 01:29 AM
bcbgcbrcb bcbgcbrcb is offline
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Funny you mention the '86-'87 Fleer basketball cards. When they first came out in December of '86, I bought two wax boxes at J.J. Newberry's in Paramus, NJ at the Bergen Mall, which was across the street from my first-ever bank job at 18 years old. At the time, the two wax boxes were priced at $10.00 each but the cashier rang them up as $10.00 total so I happily took them home at the bargain price of $5.00 each.

Of course, I ripped open all of the packs as soon as I got home and made three complete sets along with dups of Jordan, Ewing, etc. Fast forward to around 1990 and I see an ad in SCD with Rich Altman paying around $200 for the Jordan RC alone, of which, I had four from my sets. I quickly packed and shipped them along with Ewing's, Malone's, Barkley's, etc. and got back a fat check for just under $1,000. What a steal for my $10.00 investment, right? I had to go bragging to all of my friends too.

Of course, fast forwarding to today, unopened wax boxes routinely bring $10K+ each so, if I only knew then what I know now............
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  #6  
Old 03-01-2015, 05:42 AM
jcromp78 jcromp78 is offline
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I find it hard to believe for as many 86 Topps baseball and football packs I bought as a kid that somehow I failed to even buy a single pack of Fleer basketball that year. Perhaps my town (pretty small) didn't have them I will never know. I also would have told myself to stop trying to open so many 89 Donruss packs to get Griffey when in the future they would be so cheap. I never bought any 89 Upper Deck as a kid but I managed to pull the Griffey rookie last year after only a couple of packs from a card shop in Vermont.
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  #7  
Old 03-01-2015, 06:21 AM
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The first thing that I would do is go back and assure young Kevin that the future Mrs. Ailes will be far and above anything he could hope for. Therefore, stop stressing. Stop spending extra money on clothes, cars and other stuff that loses value in this adolescent pursuit of a mate because everything will work out better than fine.

Then, with a now clear mind and fattened bank account, I will turn my attention to cards. It is my sincere hope that after young Kevin recovers from the first stiff uppercut, a second right cross comes that says - hold off on spending you card money on 87 Topps baseball. Find a small quantity of pre-war and vintage cards. Buy them, and take good care of them.

I would then go Biff Tanner and tell me the next 25 Super Bowl and Workd Series winners and I'll build my bankroll for the really good cards!
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  #8  
Old 03-01-2015, 07:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by begsu1013 View Post
i'd go back to the summer of '89 and say "bobby, that upper deck jerome walton card is not going to be worth raking and bagging that yard of leaves, trust me".
Wow, and I thought I was the only one who remembered Jerome Walton. 😄
I remember shows in the fall of '89 where that card was selling for more than Ken Jr. It didn't last long but alas, that was the year that 12 year-old me became a Cubs fan...
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  #9  
Old 03-01-2015, 07:30 AM
jb67 jb67 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by begsu1013 View Post
i'd go back to the summer of '89 and say "bobby, that upper deck jerome walton card is not going to be worth raking and bagging that yard of leaves, trust me".
Good one!!
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  #10  
Old 03-01-2015, 07:33 AM
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The main thing I would probably tell younger me (and this would be like 22-23 year-old younger me) would be to never buy a card that you know you can't really afford. I went through a bit of a dealer-scum phase in the early 2000's where I snapped up pretty much anything I wanted and just put it on the credit card. (Hey, cards for cards, right?) Anything high grade of Mantle, Ted Williams, Koufax, Aaron, Mays, you name it. I had gorgeous examples of a '52 Topps Jackie Robinson and a '49 Leaf Ted Williams. This was of course not sustainable long-term, and I eventually had to sell most of it off. What also got sold in the mix were some lower grade cards from my earlier collection that had sentimental value, and by a year or so later those were the cards I had real regrets about losing.

Since coming back into the hobby recently (I'm now in my late 30's) I am sticking to mostly mid- and lower grade vintage with a vow to never get put in a position again where I might *have to* sell something. I'm also slowly adding back some of those cards from my earlier collection that were lost at affordable prices. I've never looked at cards as an investment, just always loved the history and nostalgia wrapped up in each one. If I can remember that going forward I should wind up in much better shape this time!

-John

Last edited by jchcollins; 03-01-2015 at 07:34 AM.
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  #11  
Old 03-01-2015, 09:54 AM
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I wish I could go back to 1982 and tell myself to follow the rule I follow today. Buy cards of retired players only.
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  #12  
Old 03-01-2015, 10:03 AM
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My family owned a general store in the 70's & 80's. We had kids come in, buy packs of cards, pick out the gum and their favorite player, and throw the rest into the trash. I would go back and tell myself to save those cards, and to focus on one player (I eventually started collecting Hank aaron cards). I'd also tell my brother he should sell his high grade Mark McGuire and Barry Bonds rookie cards.
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  #13  
Old 03-01-2015, 10:24 AM
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I'd go back and write Sy Berger and ask him to tell me who the three missing cards were in the 1952 Topps set.

Oh wait ... I already did that and he wouldn't tell me!


And I laugh at the 1986 fleer basketball responses - I too bought way too many baseball cards that year, and not one single basketball card.
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  #14  
Old 03-01-2015, 10:49 AM
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Similar story with me an 86 Fleer Basketball. I remember being at a show around 1987 or so, and seeing a guy with stacks of boxes on his table, selling them for $50 a box. I thought the guy was nuts. Nobody was going to pay that for somewhat new "Basketball".

Also sold an untold number of Jordan rookies for under 30 bucks apiece.

Also remember being happy to get 20 bucks a box for a full case of 1984 Topps Football.

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  #15  
Old 03-02-2015, 05:55 AM
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Actually I did know then. In the 1970s, I started collecting in 1971 at age 8, I grabbed every vintage card I could trade for or buy for the measly money I had as a child. I did attend shows and haunted shops in town as well as kids in the school yard. By 1981, I had a decent developed vintage collection which I was able to hold on to and build upon when I returned to collecting in full force in 1993.
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  #16  
Old 03-02-2015, 10:22 AM
steve B steve B is offline
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After so long, it's basically every vintage card or bit of old memorabilia I didn't buy.

But I have to look at all the stuff I did buy that turned out well.

The biggest ones I missed?

Well............

When I started, T206 Hof players in vg were usually $10 including Young, Cobb was a bit more, but not much. Commons were 1.50 and only a handful of backs were more.

So I have to pick the really big things I either missed or didn't buy.

1912 Red Sox world series pennant ----$100?! for a pennant??! crazy.

A few Goudey Ruths when they were around 100. The dealer handed me at least 4-5 of them over the years just saying it's 100 you should buy it. Never did.

Bobby Orr Topps rookie card. Really nice, and also 100 at a time when that would have bought the 33G Ruths. Just too much for a hockey card, even if it was rare and Orr.

A boxful of those little felt backed Topps Football cards. Weird, at the time expensive for football cards, but not too bad, for some reason I didn't get them. Maybe because they weren't in any guides, didn't fit any sheets well, something dumb like that.

As with everyone else, 86 Fleer basketball. In the mall McCrorys had a whole island of them. Probably hundreds of boxes. I bought a few packs, figured I'd go back and get some more if I liked them. They were cool, but the packs repeated so out of maybe 8 packs I opened I got a couple extras. Decided a couple days later that I'd get more, maybe a box or two and see if I could finish the set. None left. I still have two unopened packs plus the cards I got. No Jordan.

Those are some of the ones that stand out.
The 86 Fleer was a common thing everyone missed, and if it hadn't had Jordan in it nobody would even think twice about having passed on them.

Steve B
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  #17  
Old 03-02-2015, 11:15 AM
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When I first started working as a lawyer and had good money and no responsibilities [1990] I would tell myself to sell every card I had and take the proceeds plus every dime I had and buy a T206 Wagner, a Ruth rookie, and as many Ruth and Cobb signed checks as I could get. Then hold 20-25 years, sell, and retire.
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  #18  
Old 03-02-2015, 11:17 AM
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I'd go back and tell my 17 year old self, pick up one of those 52 Mantles you have the opportunity to get. Yeah, I know they went to $3K and now they are less than $1,000. But they will go back up....I promise.
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  #19  
Old 03-02-2015, 02:38 PM
Tim Fritz Tim Fritz is offline
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I'd go back to late 1980 and early 1981 when I was 9 and not tear apart all the Magic/Bird rookie cards. My 8 year old self kept wanting to put all the players together with the rest of their team and they therefore had to be ripped apart. I ripped apart 5 or 6 of them. Ugh.

And then in 1986 I'd tell the grocery store manager across the street to carry the '86/87 Fleer basketball cards. They never had them. They did have the '87/88 cards the next year. I never knew about the '86/87 set until I met some kids that lived on the other side of town.
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  #20  
Old 03-03-2015, 10:57 AM
gnpaden gnpaden is offline
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for me it would have been to buy all the 90's basketball wax I could find. I collected mainly between 1995 and 2000, so wish I had all the rare inserts today.
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Old 03-03-2015, 12:09 PM
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1987 - 12 year old me did purchase a few Fleer Basketball packs from my local mall card/coin shop. I didn't get a Jordan, but back then I was happier when I pulled the Bird anyways. I still have all of those cards.

However.....if I could go back to that day, I would tell myself to buy those cheap looking cards in the sealed team bags that I was looking at. There was whole bin of them and I believe they were a buck or two. I don't think there was a Celtic bag or I probably would have bought it.....but I sure would tell myself to buy all of the Bulls bags! That's the only time I remember seeing Star Basketball Cards at a card shop. It wasn't until many years later that I realized what they were. I'd go back and buy the whole bin. Even if there were no Bulls bags/Jordan's and they weren't 1984's, I'd still love to own any of the Barkley's/Stockton's/ Hakeem's/etc.
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  #22  
Old 03-08-2015, 05:52 PM
Tomman1961 Tomman1961 is offline
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1973 age 12. Should have listened to Dad. "Why not buy some of those 1973 Topps cello packs and never open them? They might be worth something some day."
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