Since moving back to PA, the sudden lack of card shows is leaving me feeling way out of touch. One of the few benefits to being in Ohio was the regular access to card shows. With a large show every month in Dayton and even larger shows in Columbus every few months, most of the commons from a new release and with some luck a decent number of the parallels would find their way into my collection within weeks of the product hitting the streets.
There is a show in November. Other than that, there is not a single show, mall show, awkward little hotel show, or anything else between here and 2014 in all of western PA.
That's the long way of saying I know 2013 A&G came out. But I don't know a damn thing about it, except that the design doesn't make me want to drive 5 hours to go buy them at a show (and yes, I am overlooking the far more rational and cost effective option of just buying the things online).
As I've started adding my Pirate collection to binder pages, it provides an awesome opportunity to view my collection from a new perspective. Up until now, my dozen or so monster boxes and shoe boxes were organized as such: commons by year and set with dividers marking each year, inserts/numbered cards/rarer parallels in their own box(es), a shoebox of certified autos, and a couple monster boxes of ip/ttm autos organized alphabetically. Of course there were the odd boxes of cards still in need of sorting as well.
Point is...I could never really see all the cards from one release in one place without either pulling a bunch of cards from different places or the magic of photoshop.
So when I gathered all the cards together and put them on the page...
Maybe the skies didn't open, the clouds didn't part, and it wasn't one of those ah-ha moments the way it is seeing the Sistine Chapel or Roman Coliseum. But it sure felt like it.
2006 Allen & Ginter was a thing of beauty. Each card appeared to be a masterfully crafted piece of artwork, enhanced by the dirtied, heavy card stock. Slap an autograph on there, and there are few things more aesthetically pleasing in this hobby.
I could complain about the decline in quality in more recent A&G sets. The lack of care with each and every base card. Cookie cutter design, creating "retro" sets that are no longer based off of an actual historical set.
But I really don't care. Just look at those cards! Ok, maybe I could do without the spring training jerseys in each photo. But what is art if not for our enjoyment and criticism.