Some thoughts from a drive home from Walmart

I was driving home from Walmart just a few minutes ago and had some thoughts relating to the hobby.  I was (am) happy.  Yeah, I took a look at the card selection.  Yeah, I walked out without any cards.  Yes, I am VERY happy about that.

I’ve recently alluded to the fact that I’m changing how I collect.  In a way, it’s similar to a piece that Jason wrote about how his wife made him think about how he collects.

In my case, I’ve decided that I am not going to buy much current stuff anymore.  Yes, I am keeping on with The Andrew Shaw Project, but I’m just buying the singles.  I don’t plan to often buy boxes (either retail blasters or hobby boxes) anymore.  I want any money that I spent going forward to be on my PC and I want to simplify my collection.  I want it to be quality, not quantity.

I’m not looking to trade anymore.  I’m having trouble finding trading partners and a lot of that is probably my fault.  I’m limited in what I want to acquire.  I am not into trading for traders, I want to get something that I will PC.  It’s also very time consuming to look at various message boards, go through buckets and all of that stuff.  That time, I would rather spend with my lovely girlfriend.  I’ve spent way too much time on things hobby related.  She’s never once made me feel guilty about it, but I do.  Also, I’d RATHER spend two hours an evening with her than on cards.

I’m really just looking to sell off anything non-PC.  It’s going to take time, but I will get it done.  I spent a lot of time getting organized yesterday and getting ready for an upcoming show that I’m setting up at.

I was extremely happy to walk out of that Walmart without buying a $20 blaster box.  The way I’ve started looking at it, I’m not going to pull anything PC out of that blaster.  All I’m going to acquire are (more) cards to sell or trade.  I already have plenty of those.  Instead of spending that $20, I could drive 10-15 minutes over to Duane’s Sportscards and pick up a card that I need for my 1955 All American set.  To me, that’s a better purchase.

Vintage cards aren’t going to spike in value.  That’s fine by me.  I got into the hobby as an eight-year old for fun, not for money.  I also know that it’s not likely a vintage cards will “lose” much value.  It’s a safe bet.  The players are all well past their playing days, we know for the most part what is out there and what shape it will be in.  I’m not really much into prospecting any more than I really enjoy buying to flip for some sort of quick profit.

I’ve done my share of prospecting, but I’ve come to learn that it’s rather foolish.  I’d rather just buy the card.  The latest case in point is how many hobby boxes and blasters I bought hoping to pull a Nathan MacKinnon Young Guns.  With the money I spent doing that, I probably could have bought five of them.  Wouldn’t that have just been the smart thing to do?  I’d now be sitting on five of them (as opposed to none – I never got one) and wouldn’t have all those extra cards sitting in storage boxes.

The closest Walmart to my home is one of those neighborhood market stores that’s essentially just a grocery.  Many times, I’ve decided to head to a different Walmart or a Target so that I could see what cards they have and hopefully find something to buy.  With the change I’ve decided to make, I don’t have that feeling anymore.

It is a great feeling.

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