Friday, June 22, 2018

Closest Thing to a Dime Box in These Parts

I envy those bloggers who go to their local card shows and pass the day sifting through the dime boxes for cards that catch their eye.  I'm even more envious when they unearth gems of cards that have no business being in the dime box, but the sellers have placed there for some reason or another.  Most of the cards on my wantlist belong in a dime box somewhere, but I usually have to pay more than that to pick them up.  I can't complain too much, though, because I also realize that there are bloggers who are just envious of the local card shows, period.  I at least have one I can attend, though the dates always seem to coincide with something else that is happening and I don't usually make it.  This past card, I did happen to attend.

My initial plan was to set up a table at last month's card show.  Yes, I would definitely have a dime box!  In fact, most of my wares would be in the dime box.  But it turned out that the card show was the same day as my wife's all-day choir rehearsal with the orchestra.  I would have the kids all day.  I could take my two boys to hang out at my table, no problem.  But the two-year-old cyclone that I call my daughter would have been an issue.  So instead, I took the three kids to spend just about an hour at the show with me, instead.

The first table we saw when we walked in was one that a friend of mine was running.  He had 200-count boxes stacked on his table marked "Baseball--Free."  I let each of my two boys pick up a box.  I expected the boxes to be jam-packed with junk wax, and I was right.  My boys now own more 1988 Topps baseball than I do.  But sitting across the top of the cards in each box was a top loader.  The two Cooperstown autographs at the top of the post!  My boys both got serial-numbered, on-card autos of Hall of Fame pitchers for nothing more than a "Thank you!"  Not a bad start to the day.

The next few tables were pretty much all the same: lots of cool, rare, high-end cards that I could never afford.  I oohed and aahed and moved along.  I finally came to a table with a few binders stacked on it.  He was trying to sell all of his collection of vintage Topps as a whole.  He was adamant that he would not break it up.  He did have one binder that he said he would sell individual cards.  I started perusing through it and found some good cards, but when he said he would do most of those cards 3/$1, I started over and looked in earnest.  Like I said, no seller at this show has a dime box, so 3/$1 is the best price I had seen all day.

I picked up some shiny Cubs from slim collecting years.

I added to my All-Star MVP collection.  I really don't like 1979 Topps, but I believe this is my first card of Don Sutton from his actual Dodger days, when he won the award.

Some Rookies of the Year.  I could have really gone nuts with Jeff Bagwell, but I refrained.

Finally, a Lolich refractor for my Frankenset, a couple of football, and the highlight of the purchase. That is a genuine Steve Garvey rookie.  The Roger Staubach is pretty beat up, but the Garvey is in great shape.  Now, I didn't get all of these cards 3/$1.  I picked up these cards and a stack of empty binder pages for $15.  In essence, I paid 75 cents for that beautiful Steve Garvey rookie.

I only spent money at one other table.  As I was making my rounds, I saw this card:

and thought, Here in Provo, that card will be gone before the day is over.  My next thought was Why shouldn't I be the one to take it home?  The seller had it marked for $8, but after a quick check of COMC and ebay, I saw that I couldn't get it for less than $6 online away, so I asked if he would take $6, and we had a deal.

I went in with $30 in my pocket, and $25 later (for those of you doing the math at home, I picked up some grab bags for the kids besides the $21 of cards I showed that I purchased), we left the card show.  It was the first time at the card show for two of my kids, so it was fun to introduce them to the world.  I'm happy with the small haul I made while there.


  1. 3/$1 isn't bad, but you definitely can't beat cards for free -- especially HOF autos! Very cool of that vendor to give those away.

  2. Your friend sounds like a pretty generous fellow!