It's been an up-and-down week for my sports card collection. I listed a card on eBay which was bid up to $45...but three days after the auction ended the winner refused to pay because "a deal fell through". As a result, I was unable to outbid the winner of this Aaron Ekblad patch auto, which sold for $15.50 + shipping.
I can't file a non-paying bidder claim until tomorrow...so Mr. Deadbeat bidder will get a nice Christmas surprise of a negative feedback that will wreck his 100% rating.
I've been feeling a lot of anxiety over my Christmas bonus, and even though my wife has constantly reminded me of how many bills we have and how much money we don't have, she's tired of hearing me complain and panic over not getting the bonus this year.
The attorneys I work for usually give $200 and a small gift for Christmas, and last year they handed out our bonuses early - somewhere around December 9. This has been an especially rough year for me personally, and I've been trying to find a full-time job.. but I stopped looking in October because, as Steve Remo said in Jerry Maguire "I gotta get da bonus."
But this year the attorneys threw us a curveball: they announced that we'd be getting an unscheduled day off (today), and a catered luncheon (which was yesterday). The ladies in the office were grateful.. probably because they're all full-time and salary. But I sat there thinking Is this in addition to our bonus...or instead of?
Meanwhile, as the December days passed without any bonus, I sent out some trade packages (and some Christmas cards). Some bloggers have reported receiving them - and some have been backlogged or just haven't gotten around to mentioning any mail from me. Which is fine, and I'm not expecting a 'thank you' post. But I worry that their cards were lost in the avalanche of Christmas mail being shipped across the country.
Dennis at Too Many Verlanders/Manninghams offered up some surplus goodies on his blog, and I claimed a couple Starting Lineups and some oversized Red Sox cards. He e-mailed me a tracking # and said they should be here by Wednesday. They weren't here Wednesday, and they weren't here Thursday. The post office had no information other than the package left Michigan on the 19th. :/
However, I did receive my Holiday Tradeathon goodies from Jaybarkerfan. I've witnessed the generosity of Wes and his #bombBob campaign on Matthew Scott's blog. The tradethon was so much fun, as Wes offered up new items every day to be claimed. I scooped up a couple hockey cards right away, then strategically held back my last claim until the end.
Martin Brodeur 1999-00 Pacific Revolution Ornament
Drew Doughty 2009-10 Upper Deck Big Playmakers jersey (#d/75)
Marc Staal 10-11 Panini Threads Prime Jersey (#d/25)
I also claimed this well-loved Bobby Avila card from 1952 Bowman:
Looks like some young collector had this glued or taped to something. I've heard that some kids would paste their cards in a scrapbook like this. It's always fun to imagine what a vintage card has been through.
These were all awesome cards and I'm thrilled to add them to my collection.. but in the back of my mind I knew that the last day of the tradeathon would have something really special. As luck would have it, I was able to check JBF's blog minutes after he published his post. I wasn't the first to claim something that day, but I feel like I got the 'grand prize' anyhow: an autographed mini-helmet from 2016 Leaf Football.
The only clue Wes gave was that it is signed by a Hall Of Famer.
When I came home Tuesday afternoon I had not received any mail from Wes. When my wife came home that night, there was no box on the porch. And yet, when we left for work Wednesday morning... the box was there waiting for us.
Lenny Moore was a halfback for the Baltimore Colts in the 1950's and 60's. He was a 7 time Pro Bowl selection, 5-time All-Pro, and won two NFL Championships in 1958 and 1959. I admit I didn't know any of this because his career predates the AFL-NFL merger and the Super Bowl.
Thank you very much Wes. I've sent a few cards your way, but they won't arrive before Christmas.
As for my $200 bonus... it was waiting for me on my desk yesterday, along with some other nice gifts: a $10 Dunkin Donuts gift card, a scratch-off lottery which yielded $2, and a board game from my boss who labeled the tag "To Chris, From: Brett Favre" (also: the luncheon was fantastic.)
Now that I have $202 I might spend a sizable portion of it on sports cards. We shall see.
One more piece of good news - my package from Dennis arrived today. This post is already too long, so I'll scan that up and post about it on the 26th, along with any Xmas cards I receive (my in-laws are always good for a junk wax repack or Topps blaster).
If anyone reading this received anything from me this week, please let me know. It doesn't have to be a blog post, just shoot me a quick e-mail so I know the post office didn't misplace your mail.
Hope you all have a Merry Christmas, or if you celebrate a different holiday:
See you on the 26th!