Chaos and Kanji is the blog where I write about my adventures through Japan!

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Monday, April 20, 2020

My Turn: Things I Like, But You Don't

Last week, Fuji put a twist on the "Things you like, but I don't" concept, by literally twisting the I and you. So, let's rip that idea off, shall we? At least, I will.. you do what you want.
Oddball cards. In the 1980s, there weren't many insert cards, and as a kid I certainly couldn't buy enough packs to put together full sets. So the chase for me was looking for cards in odd places. I scoured the candy aisles and checkout counters for packs, scanned junk food and cereal boxes for cards, and searched through the toy section for those little box sets.
Foreign cards. These are pretty oddball, too, but there are a lot more people interested in Bazooka cards than CPBL. They are the ultimate oddball, I suppose. Unique designs and ideas (Japanese game cards, for example) and a different sort of game on the field.
Cheap cards. I have some nice cards in my collection, but many of my collecting interests can be satisfied with cheaper cards. So while everyone on Twitter and Reddit are showing off their big buck autographs, I'm happy here with my base cards.
Lower condition. As a budget collector in many cases, I'm happy to take softer corners or even creases to save some money or finish off a set.
1989 Topps. A giant script name with a color border. A very simple, almost boring design. Very few action shots. It's not a great set, and perhaps just a tiny step up from 1988. But it is the first set I remember collecting, so it has a sentimental place in my heart.
Non-Sport cards. Movies, television shows, and music are a big part of my life, so collecting entertainment cardboard makes a lot of sense.
Themes. I love finding themes to collect around; I have several low-fuss player collections but I like to look for other collections to make.
Online singles shopping. People love to complain about sites like eBay, Sportlots, and COMC, but living in Japan, I have no other choice. I've learned which site is best for my interests and budget for particular purchases, and with no reliable card show or shop to pick up US singles from, I've had to rely on them. I miss dime boxes, but I can get some decent values online.
Price guides. They are nothing but a guide, but used properly, they can be very helpful. They serve as good checklists and research tools; I love my old SCM guide and the Japanese card guides I have. And they also serve their purpose as a guide for card prices; card values change, and Beckett isn't the bible of card value, but it is a decent reference if you know how to use it.

Fuji says people are people. I say:
I agree with Fuji, though. When you collect what you're interested in, it's more fun. If it's not fun, it's not a hobby. It's a chore.

Until next time...


  1. I obviously like foreign cards, especially the cheap ones and the oddball ones. And I'll settle for lower condition for the older ones.

    1. It's amazing how little condition matters here. It's a little refreshing in some ways, but it doesn't lead to discounts on older cards in lower condition.

  2. Yes to themes. Way more fun than official sets.

    1. If I had a card company, I would make only one flagship set like Topps Total, and everything else would be based off of themes.

  3. Wish I could take credit... but I borrowed the idea myself. Just can't remember who. As for your lists... I love oddballs, non-sport cards, and price guides. Is that your Jane Foster card? Oh man... Natalie is so gorgeous.

    1. That is my Jane Foster card, yep! Natalie Portman is the only good reason I can think of to watch the Star Wars prequels.

    2. Due to this distance learning thing... I have these huge breaks in between my classes (30+ minutes) and a 90 minute lunch... so I was able to watch The Phantom Menace and most of Attack of the Clones. I pretty much skipped all of the romance scenes on Naboo with Portman. I just couldn't do it.

    3. Oh, the romance scenes are horrible. But if you take out Natalie Portman, I don't think I would watch the movies more than once, ever.

      I've been watching a lot of movies lately since I have been teaching only one or two classes a day, and some days having no lessons. I've gotten a lot done around the house with all the free time, but it really isn't that great.

      Actually, we've only been doing adults these past two weeks but we're going to start kids after the Golden Week holidays. How are your students doing with online lessons?

    4. Portman plays a key role since without her, Anakin doesn't seek out a way to save her life and end up becoming Vader... so I support the need for her character. It doesn't hurt that she's gorgeous ;)

      I'm not the biggest fan of this distance learning. I have about 60 to 70% of my students showing up to my Google Meets, which I'm pretty impressed with. I kinda thought that only 20 to 30% would, since the online meetings aren't required. But the downside is only a handful actually talk and interact with me. Most of them just sit and listen to the presentation. I'd much rather be standing in front of them, so there's interaction.

    5. Interactivity is a problem, I'm sure. I don't know how it's going to go for us, but I know I can call on the kids individually if I need to. I'll embarass those little buggers!