Things Done to Cards

During the 1990 baseball season, I was seven years old.  My father bought me quite a few packs of 1990 Topps (along with some 1990 Donruss).  You know that story because I've talked about it quite a bit recently while sorting my 1990 Topps card.

That's where today's post comes in.

You see, back in 1990 I was seven.  And, as any responsible seven year old will tell you, I used checklists to actually check off the cards I owned.  Somehow, I still have a few of my checklists (they were in my binder pages before I did the reorganization).

Let's begin with checklist 2 of 6.  You can see that I labeled the Chicago (N.L.) team as the Cubs - helpful reminder to be sure.  I also checked off the cards I owned.  It's easy to see that I was much more interested in the Reds that I owned as compared to the Cubs.  

It also appears that I needed a better pen, or at the very least a scrap piece of paper to do the "ink starting" scribbles.  

The back of the checklist isn't much better.
Apparently Houston is home to the Red Sox.  

Close enough.

Moving on to another checklist, you can see that once again I labeled the teams "correctly."  Or, at least as correctly as my seven year old brain would let me.  

I was much amused that I first labeled San Diego as the "Gints" (no "a") and then corrected it to the Padres.  To be fair, San Diego and San Francisco are pretty much the same to a 7 year old living in northern Pennsylvania.  I also apparently couldn't spell Giants (nor could I spell Cardinals as the back of the card shows).

As I sorted my cards, I found another checklist that was a casualty of young child scribbling warfare.  This time however, it's not my fault.

Nope, either my youngest brother or younger sister got ahold of my cards and decided to make some of their own markings on my checklist.  At least this one is on the back of the card.
There's pencil scribbles there but they don't show up overly well in the scan.  

What does all of this tell me?

For one, it reminds me (once again) that cards are to be fun.  Using checklists can be fun.  

(Spelling Giants as "Gints" is probably not fun at any age.)

What else does this tell me?  I think Topps should consider bringing back some of the old school elements (like simple checklists) for their various brands aimed (at least in part) at kids.  Seeing the cards that I still needed to complete the Reds team set was exciting for me, it gave me something to look for when I opened up a new pack of cards.  Furthermore, I'm sure it helped me with numbers (but apparently not spelling).  Education is what it's all about right?  

Well, that and fun.


  1. The bigger question is did you ever get the Paul O'Neill and the Luis Quinones you obviously needed?

  2. The San Diego Padnahs?! That's so much better! Definitely cooler.

    Pandas would also be pretty good. Everybody likes pandas.

  3. I did the same sort of things to my cards when I was a kid. I checked the checklists, and if I accidentally marked a box on a card I didn't have I'd "X" it or scratch it out making look messy and even more like I had cards I didn't. My biggest offense was in an effort to identify my cards vs my older brothers I would put a giant "K" in red ball point pen ink or sometimes black sharpie, the back of the 71 Topps I would color in the cap logos. I still have a few of them. I still can't look at a 1970 Fergie Jenkins card without looking for my giant "K" and my brothers very small "E" (that is one of the few of my "marked" childhood cards I still have)


Post a Comment