A lot of us in America go to garage sales, thrift stores and flea markets in hopes of finding that hidden treasure. Whether we stumble upon it by accident or search up and down aisles and on tables to find it, that mysterious and ever elusive amazing find haunts the back of our thoughts.
This past weekend I was lucky enough to have discovered one of my more impressive hidden treasure finds. As my wife and I were walking through a Goodwill trying to find a few camping items for our upcoming vacation, I saw a box of baseball cards on a counter. I didn’t think too much of one box of cards until I realized there were more boxes on the counter. Instantly I felt the pull to look at the boxes. I knew that resistance would be futile so I let myself be pulled by the excitement of adding cards to my collection.
I began by purchasing only two boxes because I didn’t want to get sucked into buying a dozen boxes of beat up cards from some kids collection. (The boxes were taped closed so I could only see in a couple boxes that the tape had been cut.)
I got home and opened the two boxes. Both had 2008 Topps Heritage written on them and then some numbers like 318-348 and 267-317. As I opened the boxes I realized that the numbers represented the number on the cards in those boxes and they were organized in order. There were anywhere from 8 to 20 cards of each player. As I pulled out 18 Matt Kemp cards I realized just what this could be. My first thought went instantly to the belief that these boxes came from a baseball card shop that had gone out of business or was simply trying to do a good deed and donate extra cards, and had given 2 dozen boxes of cards to the Goodwill.
Like any good brother-in-law I texted Kelly to see if he was coming through Salem on his way home from vacation so he could get in on this action. I then took a few hours to ponder what I had seen and talked myself into going back and buying more. Okay I bought all but 5 boxes. 2 boxes had football cards, 1 had basketball, and the other two were open and had sets I didn’t need any more of.
As I got home I quickly opened each box to see if my assumption with the first two boxes was correct. As I opened the 5,000 count box and saw 1991 Upper Deck cards all in order including some special edition cards I had never seen I realized that I was living in my own little baseball card collectors paradise.
In my brief time going through the cards I’ve pulled out a Michael Jordan baseball card, a Ken Griffey Jr rookie card, more than a few players who are now coaches in the Northwest League or West Coast league. I even pulled some really cool looking special edition cards that will be going on Ebay soon enough.
Normally when I spend money I have buyer’s remorse even if it is just $5 but I haven’t felt any buyer’s remorse with this purchase and the reason is very simple. You can’t feel remorse when you buy something awesome like baseball cards. Unless you invested in all the cards in the late 80’s thinking they would make you rich only to find out that now they aren’t worth but a fraction of what you paid initially. That is why I collect for fun not profit.
Discover totals: Eleven 800 card count boxes. Four 3,200 car count boxes. One beat up but still full 5,000 card count box. I’m estimating somewhere around 25,000 total cards added to my collection in one afternoon.