I took a trip to Poughkeepsie, New York a few months back to visit friends; and yes, I dragged them to the only card shop in town, Champion Cards. Here's a scan-heavy post of all the wacky stuff I brought home.
The place is loaded with paintball stuff, board games, card supplies, a strange mix of old and new wax boxes, a bunch of bizarre packs, and a small table with a bunch of single cards in boxes. Here are a few of the ones I flew home with.
Do you think Fred Thompson knows he has a card out there?
Now I know what you're wondering: were there any Griffeys?
Indeed there were. Not many, but I was able to unearth a few from the pile of boxes. All dupes for me, but I had to give them a home.
The real treat of this particular card shop was the plethora of packs to be had, one of which contained this beauty:
Yes, I pulled this. No, I didn't have it before. It's pretty rare that I get to pull a Griffey I need from an old pack. I nerded out pretty hard in front of my friend and her significant other.
This pack of Upper Deck O-Pee-Chee actually came from Toys R Us at Times Square, but I snuck it in here because this pack is not getting its own post. That Toys R Us had the greatest Lego section I've ever seen (Nachos Grande - you need to go check it out. Seriously, I teared up a little and spent a lot), but the card section was pretty neglected not to mention buried in the video game section on the lowest of the store's four floors. Hey, I remember that Sweeney...
Back to the card shop. There were dozens of 25-cent packs to be had, and I cleaned them out. Here are a bunch of Batman cards from arguably the worst Batman movie ever made. Two words: bat nipples.
Ugh. I mean they're kind of cool I gu....no. No, they're not. Never mind.
Oh, man. Now we're talkin'.
I hate to say it, but these two Maggie Smith Hook cards are worth far more to me than any Batman Forever cards ever could. She's amazing in Downton Abbey and, of course, the Harry Potter movies.
Here is every card I pulled with Rufio on it because Rufio. 'Nuff said.
I hate to say it, but this movie does not hold up. It was awesome when I was a kid, but I tried to watch it recently and lost interest really fast. Except for the food fight imagination scene. That was the bomb.
Anyhoo, Dustin Hoffman was definitely the bright spot in my adult Hook-viewing experience. Smee was also perfect. I was kind of rooting for the bad guys the whole time.
So was the croc alive or what? Does he actually swallow Hook at the end? So many unanswered questions...
My favorite packs of the trip! This movie absolutely holds up. In fact, it's funnier than ever when I watch it now. Even the sequel has a lot of great moments. How did that happen?
I was really excited to pull George Carlin cards. I wasn't even thinking about that possibility when I bought the packs. They're pretty much as legit if not more so than Bill Murray cards.
I honestly could watch the mall scene with Extreme's "Play With Me" once a day every day for the rest of my life and never tire of it.
I bought a LOT of these packs, but I was still far enough away from completing the set that I've never revisited even trying. Maybe one day.
Let's get back to baseball for a sec:
They had a bag containing 100 sealed 1-card packs like this. These were the bags sent to Denny's for the Grand Slam promotion. The whole caboodle was only five bucks.
I busted every last one. I was looking for the Griffey the entire time. After about 60 packs I decided to look it up and found that there is no Griffey in this set. Jay Buhner was the Mariner in the '96 Grand Slam set. Hm.
After that I decided to build the entire 28-card set. After opening every single pack, I was still one card short: Jay freakin' Buhner. I had to buy the thing on COMC. I did, however, pull this:
Apparently they had an insert in this set, and lucky me, I got the Bonds. These were 1:56 packs, but I got only one. There is also an Artist's Proof parallel for these cards, but those were 1:360 packs. I've never even seen one.
Anyway, for five bucks I would say it was worth it just to open all those packs.
I would also say this was a pretty solid 25-cent pack of Sportflix. Check out Mo with the big bat.
This is a set of cards made by Topps that featured Yo Mama jokes. Apparently it's a game of some kind. They are horrifyingly inappropriate. I have a half dozen problems with that one on the right.
Ha ha ha ha ha! Parental suicide! AHHHHH-HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!! Frickin' Topps, man.
This was one of the big treats: a Topps pack from National Trading Card Day 2004! Check these out:
I honestly wish they'd had 100 of these. I would have bought every one.
The biggest baseball card success came from the trove of '97 Leaf packs, all still a quarter each. Here are the highlights:
Nothing crazy valuable, but some solid serial-numbered cards. I only bought a dozen or so packs; but with all the hits I pulled, the insertion ratios looked awfully foolish.
Sadly Series 2 (which is also the uglier of the two series) was the one with the Griffey base card, but these were still a blast to open. That remains one of my favorite Mark Grace cards ever.
I also ended up buying a card game called "Love Letter" from the game guy. He assured me it was an excellent small-time group game, and he was right. We play it all the time now. Highly recommended.
So that was the cardboard leg of my New York adventure. It made me excited to check out more small town card shops in search of old discount packs. Plus I got to drink in a hotel room, and isn't that kind of the point of going trips?