Sunday, November 23, 2008

"These are a Few of My Favorite Things"

Some of my favorite collectibles are those that were given to me by my family and one that is homemade!

Here is a cool Matchbox Car that my wife's two grandsons, Sage and Cole, picked out for me.

Here is a Matchbox Car in the 50 state car series from Oklahoma that my wife's son, Geoff and his wife Leslie and daughter Micaela picked out for me.

This is a neat car my step daughter Laura got for me. It is a small version of the car from the Test Track ride at Walt Disney World that we went on.

This is a great car that my brother in law, Ronnie, got for me. It looks super in my display case.

As you can see, I love keeping things unopened, in their original package when possible.

But my favorite is this "Matchbox" Box. My wife made this for me over 10 years ago. I think it is perfect. She painted an old cigar box to resemble a Matchbox Box. I may be biased but I think she did a great job. It looks fantastic and I love looking at it every day.

I wish everyone a happy Thanksgiving holiday. Take extra care if you are traveling. And when you get there, go ahead, have that extra piece of pie!!!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

My Favorite Baseball Card Set

My favorite baseball card set is the 1967 Topps set. They say that the majority of baseball card collectors will choose as their favorite set a set that came out within a year of their 10th birthday. Since I was born in 1957, I’m part of that majority.

The 1967 set has really beautiful pictures in an uncluttered setting. I have my sets stored in plastic sheets by team. The large team name on the 1967 cards makes this look great when the cards are side by side. Also, the team name is not overbearing like it can seem to be on the 1964 Topps cards.

The 609 card set is filled with superstars, rookies, errors, variations, the first Topps card of Maury Wills and, of course, the high number series. In the high number series of 76 cards, 22 were double printed and are easier to find then the remaining 54 cards. I completed the basic set around 1986. The two hardest cards for me to get were #553, Yankees Rookies and #580, Rocky Colavito.

One of the best looking cards is the Atlanta Braves Team card, #100. A great photo of the team outside of their stadium.

I love the two cards of George Korince on the Tigers Rookies cards. Its pretty easy to tell they are not the same person.

I also like the card of fellow Rutgers Alumnus Jeff Torborg.

My other favorite card is the rare #45 Roger Maris Yankees blanked back proof card. Proof cards are an interesting topic and will be the subject of a future blog.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

My Matchbox Car collection started in 1965.

My parents and my brother were going away for the weekend to visit my Uncle and his family in Maryland. For some reason, I did not want to go. I stayed with my Grandmother at her house.

On Saturday afternoon, my Aunt Ann came over. She bought me a present, 4 little toy cars! Little did she know what she was starting. I tore open the boxes (which were never seen again) and quickly pulled out my new treasures: A Volkswagen bus (the #34B Volkswagen Microvan), A racecar (the #41B D-Type Jaguar), A newspaper truck (the #42A Bedford Evening News Van) and A moving truck (the #46B Pickfords Removals Van). I spent the rest of the time playing with them.

My collection grew from there. My mom or dad would buy me some cars during the year but at Christmas, mom would bring me a little catalog with pictures of all the current Matchbox cars. I would neatly make out a list of the ones I wanted for “Santa”. The big guy never let me down as on Christmas morning, under the tree, I seemed to always get the cars on my list. Sure glad we always gave him cookies and milk. (Mom would say not only did he like the snack, but he was nice enough to do the dishes!).

I only collected Matchbox cars for a couple of years. Later, one year my wife got me a book on Matchbox cars and I was hooked. I got an issue of Matchbox USA, wrote to many of the dealers listed and started building my collection. The first thing I did was to get better condition cars of the ones in my collection along with their boxes. Then, I started getting the cars I wanted as a child but never got and then just getting the cars I liked. I then expanded into building, accessories etc.

Those first 4 cars have had a major effect on my life so it seems. They are the focal point of my displays. I have always loved Volkswagens, I also love Jaguars. Also racecar is a palindrome which is a subject that intrigues me. I worked through high school and college at the local stationary/newspaper store, greeting the newspaprer truck sometimes as early as 3:00 am! I‘m not sure where the moving truck fits in but every job I have had has moved their location while I was employed there.

Here are my first 4 beauties. Enjoy!