2014 Final Tally

I had a different post planned for today, but it didn’t pan out so well.  So instead, I’m gonna look at my goals from the beginning of the year and see how things panned out (with intermittent pictures to fight the boredom).  I’m sure this will end well… >.>;

Finish Fergie Jenkins Career Run– Not quite.  Still no ’68 or anything from ’70s off-brand sets.  I think the league leaders from the ’70s and almost everything from the ’80s are taken care of though.

Progress was made..

Progress was made..

Get Ryno’s other RCs– Nope.  The only other ’83 Sandberg I landed this year was his Topps sticker.  We’ll call it his 5th RC in the same way Billy Preston is considered the 5th Beatle.  He was absolutely the reason the group held together near the end of their run, and a complete run of Ryno RCs is not complete without his Topps sticker.

Complete 12 Trades– I don’t think I quite made it, but the two I got myself into at the end of the year might have gotten me into double digits, which is honestly better than I was expecting.  I will try to get better at posting my trades in the coming year.

A couple biggies found their way to me via trade, including a Jerry Rice RC!

A couple biggies found their way to me via trade, including a pretty decent condition Jerry Rice RC!

Complete Three Sets– Failed.  Hard.  I abandoned like half my set page over the course of the year, though I don’t think any of the trio I mentioned as likely candidates in the original post were officially abandoned.  But I still ended up with nothing from them.

The only set I made any progress on.  And I only just broke the 30 mark after Christmas..

The only set I made any progress on, and I only finally just broke the 30-card mark after Christmas..

Complete the Following Single Page Sensations

2011 Topps Legend Variations– Nope.  Don’t think I added a single one.  Made a little headway on 2009 Update though.

'09 Reggie Update..

’09 Reggie Update..

2011 Topps Diamond Anniversary Legend Variations– I picked up Harmon Killebrew and Paul Molitor.  Only one more needed!

2011 Topps Diamond Die-Cuts– YES!  The Winfield Single Page was decommissioned again (for the third or fourth time in my blogging career), and he returned to fill his old hole in the page.  The final piece came when I decommissioned my Adrian Beltre page, and the Diamond Die-Cut I had of the future Hall of Famer completed the page.

2012 Bowman Chrome Legends in the Making Die-Cuts– Yes, and then I abandoned the page and decided to only keep a couple.

2012 Topps Finest Faces of the Franchise– Same as above.  What I don’t want is available for everything I’ve abandoned over the past year.  Inquire and acquire within.

2013 Museum Collection Canvas Collection– Yaharr, this was so easy I was even able to replace a few I decided I didn’t like as much.  RA Dickey, Tom Seaver, and whoever the other one was are available for sale or trade.

As an aside, I’m still at 8/9 on 2012 and, pending shipment, 5/9 on 2014.  I am also at 8/9 on the 2013 football version.  I’d be finished already, but I’m holding out hope for a Deion Sanders to get close to the $0.60-1.38 range I paid for the rest that I picked up over the second half of the year.  Aikman & Andre Johnson were on the low end, Russell Wilson & Megatron were the most expensive.

Victoria/Tara– Nope.  Was too busy going overboard and accidentally turning Gail Kim into a full collection (2 new autos and two #’ed cards and a several early base cards cards).

Oops..

Oops..

Luol Deng– Nothing.  Completely forgot about him, aside from that weird sleazy racist scouting report brouhaha during the offseason.

Carlos Santana– I’m still three short.  Four if the sweet Topps Tribute WBC patch #’ed /35 I picked up for around $3.40 doesn’t fit in a binder page.  My other addition to his page was a sub (if just barely)-$10 Bowman Platinum printing plate.  An expensive addition for one of my less important pages, but it was there, and still relatively cheap for an at least borderline superstar player.

This is one of those scans don't do the card justice cards..

This is one of those scans don’t do the card justice cards..

Any five others– Unbelievably, this is a yes.  It was almost entirely stuff either I eventually abandoned (2012 & ’13 Dynamic Die-Cuts, Rod Carew also available FT), decided to go back to the drawing board on later (Robbie Alomar), just pared down to a single page (Randy Moss), or eventually overdid to the point they are full collections now (Darvish, Jorge Soler, and the above mentioned Gail Kim) but I think I actually did this.  Pending shipment, Javier Baez and 1975 Topps Minis (George Foster and Dock Ellis are the final additions) pages will also be complete for the time being.  Winner-winner, sexy sinner!

Complete any two Sketch Card pages– Yeah, pretty much.  They ended up not quite being what I originally expected, but I have a full page of She-Hulks and a full page of Women of Marvel 2 sketch cards.

Sketch Cards!

Sketch Cards!

Add 10 more key RCs– Blew this one away.  A single trade almost did the deed by itself, and a later eBay lot purchase would have easily done it on its own.  I even landed three of the biggies I listed: Nomah, Gwynn (’83 Fleer), &  Boggs sorta (also a Topps Sticker).

Key RCs was easily the most successful pursuit of the year..

Key RCs was easily the most successful pursuit of the year..

Complete five more trifectas– I didn’t make them a priority.  I think I managed a couple though.  Brandon Phillips and Alshon Jeffykins were completed this year, I think.  Maybe three if Booker T counts, since I might be in possession of his oldest card now.

It's the oldest WCW set, post Booker T's 1993 debut that I know of, so maybe it counts as his RC?

It’s the oldest WCW set, post Booker T’s 1993 debut that I know of, so maybe it counts as his RC?

30 new 1960 Topps– Abandoned set.  Everything but Vic Power, because that was my first ever vintage card, is available.  Even Gil, Maz, & the high number commons, if you bring it with your trade offers.

Break 100 cards with another player– Surprisingly, it was Nomar Garciaparra, because I bought a ginormous 200+ card lot of him on eBay.

Pay off old debts– Completed one, added one.  My original package for the dude on twitter never turned up, so I’ll have to go with a replacement package in the coming year.  Meh, I should’ve done better. :/

Now onto the blog, where things get even dicier than the cards themselves.  I started off strong, then posted pretty much nothing for at least nine months for no good reason, then ended with a nice little flurry.  And even though I added nothing else, my art got a good a percentage of focus, so I’m not terribly disappointed by my effort during the small fraction of time I was actually here.  Now if I could just find some focus to actually hang around all year.

What about me in real life?  I never did hit the gym, and it’s just been the past several weeks that I started running with any degree of regularity again, but this godforsaken place I live made it so I was going out and walking constantly all year long.  Eating healthier has still been spotty at best (in fact I was in stomach distress from overdoing it on probably the most unhealthy regional brand of potato chips you can buy as I was typing this, which is why it’s going up Sunday morning instead of Saturday morning), but I am still maintaining my weight.

Finish old sketch cards– Not many.  Mostly just the more recent of my old stuff, and I’m staying on top of newer work as well as can be expected.

30 realistic portraits– I don’t know for sure, but I feel like I have to be very close on this.  I managed to do a couple in the early morning hours before I had to do stuff just in the past few days, and I think I have at least one more in me in the waning days of this year.

50 new sketch cards– I expect to be around 40 by the time the year is out.  My arting is up significantly overall even if 50 sketch cards won’t happen though.  I think I probably drew somewhere between 100-125 things total this year.

Decent effort, kid..

Decent effort, kid..

Finish first draft of novel– I failed so miserably at writing this year.  To be fair to this and my lack of blogging most of the year, my computer situation was in serious flux the entire year, and I was too broke to do anything about it.  I was also leaving constantly due to noise.  However, there was more than enough downtime that I should’ve been able to do plenty of both.  So while there were mitigating circumstances, my first sentence still stands: I failed so miserably at writing this year.

Lynna Sage from something I'm writing, currently under the working title Nexus Eternum..

Concept sketching went better than expected though..

Travel– Nope.  I’ve never been this ridiculously tight on money so constantly for an entire year before.  Not hopeful for 2015 either.  My money will be likely be at least as tight, though more focused on the things I need to get on with my life rather than things that I want or are necessary for an immediate specific purpose/moment.

Watch more anime– Only marginally more successful than the other things on the list.  Mostly just Space Dandy, a couple random movies, and a little hentai.

The Space Dandy gang are so disappointed in my lack of anime viewing..

The Space Dandy gang are so disappointed in my lack of anime viewing..

More video games– Again, only just a slight uptick in activity.  A lot of it was done in the week & a half I went without a computer in late November/early December.

So there you have it.  I’m still a mostly useless wreck of a human being, but I can point out things that are actually improvements over years gone by.  That should give you an idea how hopelessly broken I’ve been, the incremental improvements I’ve made, and the many, many light years I still have to go before I could ever be considered functional in any meaningful way.

That’s it for now.  Here’s to a better 2015!  Thanks for stopping by.

We have come to terms…

Out of the Night, When the Full Moon is Bright…

Lady Zorro..

Lady Zorro bustin’ out..

Here’s a sketch card from a set I never would have expected in a million years, and yet here we are.  This comes from The Women of Zorro by 5finity.  I assume the characters all come from the comics.  I know there have been Zorro comics off & off for the past 20 or so years anyway, though I’ve never really read any.  I picked up the ridiculously huge Humble Dynamite Bundle yesterday, even though I really shouldn’t have due my precarious levels of brokeness, and there are several Zorro comics in it, including a Zorro/Django crossover I’m desperate to give my away my extra Bob’s Burgers #1s in order to unlock.

But anyway, this is one of the best looking sketch cards from the set I’ve come across, and it only set me back $10.50.  Maybe I’ll grab the other three characters represented in the set if I can find ones this nice for a similar price.

Thanks for choosing me over your loved ones this Christmas Eve. 😛

Until our next…

A PWE in the Night

Changing it up from the burgeoning string of sketch card posts, I got a PWE from surefire first ballot Hall of Fame card blogger, real life sports journalist, and 1975 Topps Mini enthusiast Night Owl during those 10 dark days I went without a functioning computer.  I claimed these four cards from his lone pack of Topps Update, and here they be.

George Springer hot pack!

George Springer hot pack!

Some great looking cards there.  Outside of a very nice run of Donruss Series 2 fat packs I ought to post about if I’m back from outer space to stay for awhile, I bought precious little current stuff this year.  The little bit of 2014 Topps to cross through my collection was actually rather nice though.  Here we have a Springer RC and one of those rad ’89 Topps Remix minis, King Felix yucking it up with MLB Network (I’m going with Intentional Talk as my guess as to who is on the other end of the tin can and string), and Topps meanspiritedly calling Jose Abreu a turd.

I keed, I keed… The back says on April 25th, 2014 against the Tampa Bay Rays, he became only the second rookie ever to hit a walk-off grand slam in the month of April, following in the footsteps of Ron Lolich of the Cleveland Indians in 1973.

The More You Know...

 Ting!

Cloak Sketch Card

Marvel Now! Cloak..

Marvel Now! Cloak..

I picked this excellent sketch card of the Marvel C-lister up late last month for $5.58 w/ free shipping, because I felt like I needed a Cloak to go with the five Dagger sketch cards I have at present.  They are two of my all-time favorite comic book characters for one very important reason.  When I was but a wii youngling, my dad had two big stacks of old comic books on the bottom of a huge bookcase in my room, and their earliest appearances featured prominently in there.

Those stacks are also the reason I have a soft spot for Jonah Hex and mark out hard for all of his DCAU appearances.  Issues 1-11 of Hex, his adventures in a post-apocalyptic future were in there.  There were also several Digest-sized DC Comics amongst the actual books, which included “Whatever Happened to the Crimson Avenger”, a short story that has stuck with me throughout the years and become one of my all-time favorites.

A few collections of newspaper comics also made an appearance on that magical bookcase.  This is the reason I’m one of the 8 people in the world today who knows of Tug McGraw’s fantastic ’70s baseball comic Scroogie, even though it came and went nearly a decade before I was born.  One of my creative aspirations is to create a sequel (probably in novel form) to that awesome comic.  I will post some pages on the blog if I the two collections ever turn up.

I’ve gotten way off track, but now you know where the root for a great deal of my nerdery comes from.  That’s all for now.  Thanks for stopping by!

A Sketch Card so Weird I had to Own It

Shulkie and Luke Cage intergender match..

Shulkie and Luke Cage intergender match..

I picked this sketch card up in November and just finally got it scanned in the past week or so.  I have a page dedicated to She-Hulk sketch cards, but I dunno if this one will go in it.  I am close to blowing by my single page limit since licensed Shulkie sketches seem to be a relatively inexpensive get these days (at least compared to everyone else I collect), so it might not matter in a couple months anyway.  But anyway, this is an odd bird and a few questions are begging to be asked-

Why are She-Hulk and Luke Cage fighting in the first place?

Since She-Hulk is at the very high end of the super strength spectrum on her worst day and the the artist formerly known as Power Man is at the very low end, how is she even noticing that punch?

Err, that is Luke Cage, isn’t it?

Why does She-Hulk have short hair and jeans?

Why do I miss Luke Cage’s ridiculous original Power Man costume so much?

Oh well, it’s still a nicely drawn card, and weird enough (and juuuust cheap enough) that I happily added it to my collection.

That’s all for this post.  I’ve got three more sketch cards to post from last month, and 9(!) more between my COMC shipment and eBay winnins for December, and amongst other things, I hope to post virtually all of the entire 104 total cards over the next few weeks.  First I have to scan them though, which I’ll start as soon as finish babbling incoherently on here.

As always, thanks for stopping by!

Business is about to pick up…

My Nerdiest Thing…

Lynna Sage from something I'm writing, currently under the working title Nexus Eternum..

Lynna Sage from something I’m writing, currently under the working title Nexus Eternum..

…is my art.

Sketch cards of Big E and AJ Lee..

Sketch cards of Big E and AJ Lee..

Drawing is probably the one thing I enjoy above all else.

Musician Dia Frampton..

Musician Dia Frampton..

Deciding to draw again may have even saved my life when I was at my lowest point.

Thing and Wonder Woman..

Thing and Wonder Woman sketch cards..

In the here-and-now, drawing relaxes me and is all-around helpful to my emotional wellbeing.

@Heinekenrana..

@Heinekenrana..

I don’t think there’s anything more essential to me.

Derek Jeter sketch card..

Derek Jeter sketch card..

Losing anything else, it may hurt forever, but I’ll deal.

Evie Wonder Woman sketch cover..

International indie wrestling star Evie on Wonder Woman sketch cover..

But even if I’m a laughably mediocre artist (and in many aspects I am), my art makes me more whole than I’ve ever been.

Stephen Strasburg sketch card..

Stephen Strasburg sketch card..

If anything I do ever becomes a thing, my art will still be important to me.

Indy wrestling star Hania..

Indy wrestling star Hania..

It centers me…

Lex Luthor, Starfire, and Green Lantern Arisia sketch cards..

Lex Luthor, Starfire, and Green Lantern Arisia sketch cards..

It heals me…

Fitness competitor/model Chie Terui..

Fitness competitor/model Chie Terui..

It completes me…

Dejah Thoris (Edited) sketch..

Dejah Thoris (Edited) sketch..

When I draw, it’s as close to deeply passionate about something as I ever get.

Sketch card of rising international wrestling star Evie..

Sketch card of international wrestling star Evie..

That passion is why I have to consider it my ultimate nerdy thing.

Expos Legend Tim Raines and Yankees prospect Luis Torrens repurposed sketch cards..

Expos Legend Tim Raines and Yankees prospect Luis Torrens repurposed sketch cards..

Thank you for stopping by.

Under the Broken Moon, from my big idea for a BSG-esque Thundarr revival..

Thundarr/Under the Broken Moon concept art..

Until our next…