What is the worst part about card collecting?
There are many possible answers here (and I'd love to hear your answers in the comments) but a few possibilities jump to mind immediately for me:
- Short prints
- Error cards (real or otherwise)
- Sets too big
- Sets too small
- No more gum with card packs
- No more cigarettes with cards (ok, this one is a good thing)
Seriously though, those are all possible answers - but none of them are my current #1 pet peeve when it comes to card collecting. You know what my answer is?
9 pocket pages.
More specifically, I have been collecting cards ever since I was eight or nine years old. In that time, I've bought thousands (and thousands) of 9 pocket pages. When I was little, I would buy the cheapest pages available. Today, I try to stick with Ultra Pro pages...but when you look at my collection in its entirety I have a ton of different 9 pocket pages.
And I hate sorting them.
You see, I'm sort of OCD when it comes to my collection.
I would love it if every card I owned was housed (in order) in a binder...and if every 9 pocket page was an Ultra Pro page. However, that's not feasible since it would require me to buy a TON more pages...and it would require me to un-sleeve and re-sleeve a large number of 700+ card sets (something I'm not anxious to do). I would also run into the problem of what to do with all of my old 9 pocket pages...I wouldn't want to throw them out but I also don't really have room to store hundreds (maybe thousands) of unusable pages.
No, instead I do the following. I first try to sort all of the 9 pocket pages into like piles. This sounds easy in theory, but if you've ever worked with some of the "off brand" pages, you know that they are often very similar...and yet, different. It's super annoying.
Once I get them sorted, I then try to find the appropriate size stack to use for a set.
The other day, I finally got around to putting my 1996 Upper Deck Collector's Choice (Series I) cards in a binder - and I used some of my recycled (non-Ultra Pro) sleeves for that set. I figured the whole set is probably worth less than the (recycled) 9 pocket pages so why not? You'll also notice that I leave a blank spot where each missing card will (eventually) go. My 1996 UDCC want list is still quite large (just in case you have some sitting around)...
Now that I've finally sorted all my extra 9 pocket pages, I'm stuck with another conundrum. How to store them (and keep them organized) until I need them again?
The life of a collector is never complete, is it?
So tell me, what do you think is the worst part about collecting?