Thursday, November 26, 2020


 A few days ago Trevor of Bump & Run Football challenged all card bloggers to include something they are thankful for in posts this week. While I forgot to specifically mention that in my previous post, I think the thankfulness shows through. 

Hobby wise, I am really thankful for those of you in this hobby who continue to be selfless givers, who send me stuff at random. I'm a little embarrassed about how rarely I actually send anything out- although when I do I try to make it something really special. I have definitely been on the receiving end of your kindness WAY more than I've given back. 

I'm thankful that I get to take part in the hobby. In any hobby. I probably have one of the lowest budgets for the hobby of any blogger, yet I wouldn't trade my collection for the world. I have said this before, but I truly feel that it's a privilege that I've been able to curate a collection of this magnitude. 

I'm thankful that my health problems haven't taken away my hobbies...yet. They've taken so much else from me. 

I'm thankful that medicines have been invented that allow me to continue to live. 

I'm especially thankful for how my modeling has gone this year. I'm pretty much done for the year, but this year, 2020, was the absolute best year for me in modeling, ever. I completed 35 1/24 NASCAR models, 21 1/64 NASCAR models, 1 space station and 1 building. I finally put the skills together to be able to build the way I've always wanted to. From 2010-2019 I built a grand total of 10 NASCAR models, 5 of them in 2019. I thought I would never build another 1/64 car, thinking I had to give that up forever. But I'm getting it back, and doing better, cleaner work than I have ever done before. I may finish a couple more 1/64 builds (targeting 25 on the year) and maybe 1 or two more assorted builds...time will tell. (And believe me, I will write a recap post at the end of the year). 

I'm thankful that you all read what I write. I am a nobody, in that I'm not an athlete, or professional writer. I don't make anything happen. The world doesn't really need me...yet people still care about what I have to say. I've said it before, but I didn't expect to have a readership. I definitely didn't expect to get an average 80 views and a few people who are regular commenters. 

I'm thankful that I've been able to build and maintain 2 very large websites. 

I'm thankful to be alive, really. I'm thankful for women who take their clothes off on the internet. 

I also am thankful to you for reading. Whether you're a regular commenter or have never commented before, the thanks are there no matter what. 

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

All the Tim Horton's, but none of the carbs!

 Every year Tim Horton's does a hockey card set that is sold exclusively in Canada. Every year I am shut out because I do not live in Canada. This year I decided to put up a post on Facebook and see if my modeling friends who live in Canada might be able to help me out...and did they ever! I made a deal to trade a model kit for 25 packs of the set, which I thought was a great deal...then another friend, he RAOKed me with a huge box containing 100 packs, of which I opened 92 on the first day they arrived. (which is today) WOW! I wasn't expecting that at all, what a great surprise from a good friend! 

After opening those 92 packs, I had: 

  • 119 of 125 base cards, 95.2%
  • 13 of 15 Gold Etchings, 86.7%
  • 14 of 15 Cup Winners, 93.3%
  • 23 of 50 Die Cut, 46%
  • 10 of 15 NHL Canvas, 66/7%
  • 7 of 15 Clear Cut Phenoms, 46.7%
  • 3 of 20 Franchise Trios, 15%, and 
  • 15 of 15 All-Star Standouts, 100%! 
I believe that All-Star Standouts became the first insert I've ever completed from packs all in one day! (not counting single card inserts, of course)

I still have 8 packs left to open, which I will do tomorrow (or possibly later, I need to scan one of them before I open it and my scanner is currently buried under stuff- cards and models. Including the cards from the 92 packs. Maybe not the best planning I've done.)

I'm not sure when I'll get any of the cards scanned, so just a photo of the packs I did open today...
These were also my first cards from the 2020-21 season. I hope we actually get to have a season. 

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Well, that was frustrating.

 I decided to work hard on the recovery project, and it's going fairly well- since the last post about it I've recovered over 800 scans. I've finished the NBA section, which I knew would be hardest, and I was able to do hockey in it's entirety on Saturday and Sunday. Since the problem occurred right before I got into hockey officially, I knew that all the cards should have been in one 5000 count box, which is where I stored my officially scanned hockey collection up through the 2018-19 season, when I filled the box. I have not been through the early part of the box since 2017, only adding newly scanned cards since then. 

I came up with 15 scans that were lost forever. I am actually pleased with that number. 15 scans, that's less than 2 full pages, I can do that. I decided to get the box out, pick out the cards that needed to get their backs rescanned, and knock them out, making hockey fully complete, with no scans missing. 

Of course, nothing ever comes easy. I went through every single card in the box, twice, and remember, this is a 5000 count box...and three of the cards weren't there. There is no possible way this should be. Every card from before the crash would have been scanned before I got into hockey, and therefore they should have been in the first two columns, as that is what was done before the crash. 

Oddly enough, all three missing cards are from 1992-92 Upper Deck. 

I have absolutely no idea where they are. I do have a theory though. I pulled some of the cards aside and sequestered them in a "Scanned- needs replacement" box, which is where I was putting cards that were in low condition but I scanned them anyway. The problem: I don't know where that box is at the moment. That's the problem with using identical boxes for everything, sometimes getting my hands on a specific box can be troublesome. There is also the possibility that they were in one of the overflow boxes, of cards scanned after the crash. They shouldn't be, since they should have been in the 5000 count box, but if I replaced them with better copies later they may have gone in one of them. If that's the case, I'll find them eventually when I sort everything. 

There's an even lesser chance that I accidentally put them into one of the NBA, NASCAR or Non-Sports boxes. I doubt that would have happened at that time- I kept everything separate, but I may have made a mistake. 

The possibility I really don't want to think about is I may have mixed them into my duplicates. I'm almost sure I have two of the three rattling around my duplicates, provided I didn't give them away last Christmas.

I will probably go through my dupes box and pull them out if they are still in there just to be safe. One card is a Gretzky, and one was my first Gordie Howe card, so kind of important there. Can't get to that easily right now but I have taken notes in Excel for when I can. 

But hey, while I'm upset by not being able to find those three cards, I WAS able to find and rescan the backs of the other 12. I actually misspoke a bit- one of the backs didn't go missing. It was corrupted. I had it the whole time, it was simply unusable. 

These are all the scans I had to recreate. The Laflamme is the one I had the original of but it was unusable. 

I believe that every single one of these cards was a gift from my friend Ricky back in January 2015, that formed the basis of my NHL collection. 

Since I wrote this post, I've also finished checking WNBA, baseball, football and college basketball. I expect that I'll be sleeping when this post is published (I'm scheduling it) but I will probably still be in the middle of multi-sport cards. I expect that to take a couple of days. After that, Non-Sport and NASCAR, which will be challenging. I'm sure I'll have a post about that when I'm working on it or done, NASCAR will provide some different challenges not found in the other sections. 

Sunday, November 15, 2020

Respect for Tom Heinsohn

 Last week, Celtics legend Tom Heinsohn died at age 86, and while I did see articles talking about his basketball playing career, his coaching career, and the fact that he is inducted into the Hall of Fame for both (a rarity) and his broadcasting career, I didn't see anything that mentioned the greatest contribution he made. 

Tom Heinsohn was (apparently) the first white player to to take a stand and say segregation was wrong. The first to refuse to stay at a hotel, or eat at a restaurant, that did not also serve his black teammates. This would have been in the 1950s, although I don't know the exact date or location.

That is, I feel, his greatest moment, even though it didn't happen at a basketball game, or even at an arena. His personality grated on me...made the Celtics games almost unwatchable in fact...but Respect...yes, he has mine for sure. 

I didn't want that to be forgotten. 

I don't have any playing career cards of his- he only has three mainstream playing career cards, one from 1957-58 Topps and two in 1961-62 Fleer, and all three are well out of my price range. So here are his card from the 1993 Action Packed Hall of Fame, 1984-85 Star Schick Legends game, and 2015 Basketball Hall of Fame set, which is as far as I know his only coaching card. 

I don't really do memorial posts outside my year end In Memorium post anymore, but that I feel was definitely worthy of one. RIP.  

Friday, November 13, 2020


 I doubt many of you will remember, but back in 2016 I lost a LOT of files to a remote hard drive crash. In the post I link to, I talked about a program that was able to recover some of the files off that hard drive. What I never really followed up on though is that while I was able to recover several thousand, there were several thousand more still that I had thought I had lost forever and would have to rescan. I decided that I would deal with that once I finished scanning everything.

Fast forward to 2020. As I was stopping using my original Fotki for my card collection scans, and transferring them all to the Cardboard History Gallery, which I began to do in January, I realized that I had uploaded a bunch of them to the original Fotki, but had forgotten completely that I did that. I have to be honest, I hadn't really given much attention to the card back scans. There were scans that I thought were totally gone...still living in a less visited corner of my very own website. 

I set out to recover them. I thought I was doing good- I spent a whole month working on it...but then I discovered that I hadn't done as well as I thought. I had made a crucial mistake. I sorted them by upload date, and started from where the old device crashed. After I finished all of that- saving and relabeling them one-by-one, along with some of the recovered scans from the program mentioned in that 2016 post, which I have still not fully processed yet- and then I sorted them back by "title" and discovered that some of the earlier ones had been lost too. 

What was already a tedious and frustrating project turned out to be soul crushing. I set it aside then and had not gone back to it. When I got too frustrated, I had already recovered 7.092 scans. 

For several months I had been trying to work out a system to download the images in full from Fotki. Fotki does offer that feature, via an FTP server. 

The first one I tried didn't work. The second one I tried didn't work. I reached out to Fotki for help and it didn't progress much. It wouldn't work. I noticed on October 30th that Fotki had responded back to me in August, saying they had made a slight tweak and please retry again. I had been so busy with models I hadn't noticed. I did try, and success! I was able to download the back scans, which I did in full. 

As you can see, it was a heck of a lot of images. Rather than go through and try and pick out what ones I needed, I just downloaded all of them. It would be easier to delete the duplicates than try and mess with sorting them into another album and try to download them. Heck with that, it took me a month+ of frustration trying to do that already. 

I know there will still be some that I need to rescan. With the Recuva program I was able to recover some backs that the fronts are now missing on. I had a stash of scans I had not processed to Fotki, a different mindset that ended pretty much instantly when the remote hard drive died. And I know that this will take me a heck of a lot of work to fix in full. I don't expect to finish this side project in 2020. I may not even finish it in 2021 to be honest, depending on how my modeling goes, which is really how the weather goes. But there's no time limit. 

And this time they will be backed up in at least 4 places. 

And it's not just cards that this will help me with. I know several car shows had gone "missing", but really, only existed on Fotki. I will be recovering them as well...but first I have to sort the card scans out of the file they download into, which is now done. 

The one part of the downloading I don't like is that it doesn't save the name exactly as I had it labeled. It removes all spaces, as well as the # and ( )s from each scan label. Not only that, but it also doesn't save the name in full if it's too long. It makes some extra work for me, but I guess it's better than the Recuva program, which didn't save anything at all, just assigned a new number code to each scan, photograph and file. Like I said before, it's going to take me a while to full recover everything I can, but I will get there. Eventually. 

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Unexpected local reference on a card!

 I have been so busy with models that I have not had a chance to read the new cards that my friend Brad sent me for my birthday...but now it's cold and rainy, so I'm working on cards...and what do I see when editing the back scan, but a mention of the Poughkeepsie Journal! 

The Journal is our local newspaper, and has been in continuous publication since 1785, the second oldest newspaper in the entire USA. 

I've actually been to their main office, which is in a neat old building. 

Lydon himself is a semi-local hero, as he is from Hudson, about an hour north of me, and about 45 minutes north of the Journal's location...but they don't cover north of Rhinebeck. 

This is not the only time that the Poughkeepsie Journal has appeared on cards. They actually produced their own at some point in the 1980s but they are extremely elusive. Not even on the Trading Card Database. The only way I know they even exist is because there are two of them in the display cases at the Dutchess County Sports Museum. 

Although the back is the reason for this post, here's the front, too, just for posterity.

Being a Prizm (Chrome) style card it didn't scan all that well. 

That was a nice surprise to find.