Friday, August 29, 2014

College Colors Day

Usually I don't do posts related to things like this or this short. With the excitement around the cat house for college football, and watching a few blowouts last night. I wanted to remind everyone that today is.

So wear your gear from your favorite college today, and let the world know who you root for.

Personally I'm going with black shorts, and my Cincinnati Bearcats eyes t-shirt. Would love to wear something related to the Utah Utes, but honestly the clothing choices they have suck so I don't own anything. Either way hopefully you get into the spirit, and have a great time with this day.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

It's Happy Time!

Around here at the cat house we love our major, and minor league baseball. While we like to believe nothing is more relaxing than catching a ballgame. Sitting there catching a game, and taking in all the sights while enjoying the game. There is one thing that hits us even more than baseball.

That one thing is college football season. This time of year is referred to as the happy time of year. Out of the sports we enjoy watching, college football does something that none of the other sports does. It is the one sport where we will sit, and watch two teams play that we don't card who wins just because its great viewing.

College football is tricky though with all our different loyalties in the house. The wife is an Oregon State fan through, and through. The step-son is an Oregon Ducks fan, and after being right next to their stadium this summer I can see why. The thing was so incredible I couldn't help, but be impressed with the entire area.

While the Eugene Emeralds play in the Ducks ballpark. We had never spent the time to walk around the stadium to the team store just on the outside. After doing so I was glad we took the time, and so was the wife who isn't even a fan of the school.

Then we come to me, and the two schools I root for. Number one is the Utah Utes as I grew up in Utah, and have a sort of loyalty to the school. Number two is the Cincinnati Bearcats, and that one is kind of unexplainable. For some reason I just picked the school and became a fan. I've said many times I'm a weird, and complex person. Nothing shows that more than my loyalty to a school nowhere near anyplace I've ever lived or visited.

More than anything I'm looking to an interesting season for both teams. The Bearcats are expected to do well in the American Athletic Conference, possibly even winning the conference altogether. Utah on the other hand is expected to be one of the worst teams in the PAC 12. Hopefully they can pull of some surprise wins. All I ever hear when we talk football at work is how Utah wouldn't have had those couple great years in the PAC 12, and their past few seasons prove that. You can't get them to understand that all those players have been long gone since the Utes joined the PAC 12. Its a lost battle though that maybe a few wins by a down team might fix. If not there is always next year.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Best Return Ever!

With baseball season winding down, and college football starting soon. Sending out requests for pocket schedules starts to change over with me not sending out as many requests. This year I might change that, and attempt more bowl games, and some of the missing NASCAR tracks. Despite the slowing I do still have four college teams I request schedules from.

Deciding to get an early start on one of those colleges I dreamed up an idea for an artelope. Coming up with what has to be one of my favorite non-racing related artelope.

If you can't tell the idea is a football helmet. I even went as far as to make sure I had the stripes across the top in the right order. Despite being pleased with the results I still felt something was missing. That is when it hit me that this was what was missing.

I needed to do the opposite side, and keep with the effect. As I've hinted already, I was very pleased with the end results.

Obviously from what I got in return the artwork that went into this was very appreciated. Getting a call at break on Wednesday. The wife informed me that the mailman had dropped off a tube at the door. Puzzled I asked about the tube, and got the answer that it said University of Miami on the outside.

A little bit of excitement hit me as I had an idea of might be inside, but wasn't sure. I say wasn't sure as I've asked about schedule posters in the past, and got the response that it would cost seven dollars if I recall correctly. So I was hopeful, and doubtful at the same time on what was inside. Throw into the mix that my request was for the usual pocket schedules, and a business card. Could it be true that they loved my artelope so much that they sent me a schedule poster?

Popping open the tube I reached in and jackpot!!

They were originally rolled up, and I put two binders on them to flatten them out. After two days of that I took the binders off, and threw the one you see into the frame shown in the picture. While I'm not a huge Hurricanes fan, and have often wondered why I still write them for schedules. I'm looking forward to finding a place on the wall to hang this poster. Odds are all this might actually make a bigger fan out of me as deep down I already have been on a much smaller level. If not I wouldn't have been collecting their schedules all these years.

After clearing out seven posters I looked in to find seven pocket sized schedules. These all matched the picture above, but with the actual game information listed on the back of the card type schedule.

This was my best return ever, and is one I doubt will ever be topped. What it does is show me that someone out there enjoys each piece of envelope art sent their way.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Pop Tarts, Yes... Pop Tarts

While at the store today with the wife we had to head through the grocery section. Most times when we do this my mind starts to wander. I see what type of things I can find that are different, and interesting. This is when I noticed something I hadn't realized even existed. MLB Pop Tarts...

The wife was long gone so I didn't give them more than a quick glance. Being they were strawberry flavored, and I kind of like strawberry Pop Tarts I don't know why I didn't grab a box. What they did do is spark an interest in me to see what I could learn about these bad boys.

Doing a quick search I came up with this pictures from the MLB Fan Cave Twitter account.

This picture wasn't the first link that came up when doing the search though. Those honors belonged to a blog called Peanut Butter and Awesome. Back in July Mr. Awesome did two posts related to these fun little baseball related tarts. Strawberry MLB Pop Tarts, and Strawberry MLB Pop Tarts part 2.

Like most movies that have been released. The sequel wasn't as good as the original if you ask me, but I'd say go read them for yourself and decide. What I do know is now I'm thinking that next time a box of these need to follow the cat home.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Felix Reaches Another Milestone

This year I haven't had the chance to listen to many of the Mariners games on the radio. There are two reasons for this occurrence. The first is that it doesn't seem like the radio station has done as many games this year as in past seasons. The second is that I am usually only driving home for half an hour, and so my listening to games is very limited.

Luckily today the game against the Red Sox was on, and so I decided to give it a listen. The game was early, and my timing perfect. Felix it seems set another record today for Mariners pitchers.

In the second inning of the game shortstop Xander Bogaerts went down swinging. While that doesn't sound like a huge deal. Xander became the 200th strikeout victim of Felix for 2014.

What this means is Felix has struck out 200 hitters for his sixth consecutive season. According to Rick Rizzs of Mariners radio, this is uncharted territory for a Mariners pitcher. Adding to the mix is after seasons end Felix will have the longest current streak in the majors. Justin Verlander current stands at five, but at 118 strikeouts is out of the running to accomplish 200 this season.

With Felix having a career year in setting new records in not just the Mariners book, but in the MLB book. It has been a shame that the team has been struggling to give him runs support. His 13-4 win-loss record might sound great to those outside of the Northwest region. Sadly it is an embarrassment being it should be better given the way Felix has pitched.

Running close to an appearance in the playoffs. Hopefully Seattle will close things out as seeing Felix pitch in the playoffs would be awesome. The atmosphere in not just Seattle but the entire region would be insane. Then the rest of the country would get to appreciate the greatness Felix is showing this year.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Too Much Stuff

For the longest time I have been itching to move into the new hobby room. Being bigger than the room I was using I got thinking it meant more room for stuff. Using that thinking I have been buying all the bobbleheads, and other treasures you've all enjoyed reading about.

Then came reality. While I am still slowly moving things into the room I have come to realize one thing. I have bought more things than the room will hold.

The bobbleheads are at the level where if I add any more one will need to be taken away for a replacement. The collection of logo baseballs is at the same level. The baseball card boxes are still lingering in the old room. Still trying to figure out a home in the new room.

All this leaves me at the binders, and what has been my biggest challenge. Normally it wouldn't be as crazy binder wise as it is. Except when you throw in the sports business cards binders, which is at four just for the baseball teams. This doesn't even count the business cards for all the other sports. The binders that hold pocket schedules is at somewhere around seven. Then closing everything out is the binders that I've started putting baseball card sets into. 

Originally I thought everything was figured out, but I was so wrong. Shelves have been rearranged a few times with one last arrangement still coming. Hopefully this will be the last time, and all the binders will finally have a home. If not it will be once again back to the drawing board.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Tieing Up Some Loose Ends

With the work being done on the hobby room still going strong. There is something I still haven't taken care of. A couple weeks ago I did a trade with another pocket schedule collector.

Looking to unload some of his extra's, and either turn them into cash or schedules from his wants. I gave his lists some looks, and came up with eight schedules from past seasons I was missing.

When it comes to basketball there are only three teams I collect. Those teams are the Utah Utes because I grew up in Utah. Second is the UNLV Rebels because growing up they had an awesome team with Tark at the helm. Despite not being relevant for years I still find myself collecting their schedules for some strange reason.

Last on the list is the Cincinnati Bearcats. For some weird reason I just like the C logo used by the team. While it's simple I just like it. Everyone has those things that they can't explain for one reason or another. Cincinnati being one of my favorite colleges is one of those things for me.

Closing out the schedules were three additions into the college football.

I've had this streak for the last four seasons where I wasn't writing teams like I should be. The big reason for this was I had a connection with a trader who lives near Cincinnati. He picked up all the Bearcats basketball, and football covers. This stopped for some unknown to me reason, and I just never wrote the Bearcats for schedules. Last year I finally got my act together, and mailed the team for basketball, but I missed football. The team has multiple football out already, and another collector has the covers. All I need to do is try, and work out a trade or just get to business and write the school.

These two were by far the gems of this trade. As you can tell by the scan, the Utah schedule flips between a black, and a red helmet.

The surprise to me was that the Hurricanes schedule does the motion thing. Ibis does a dance which might make this the coolest schedule in my entire collection. I don't know how to do the entire motion thing some of you have mastered or I'd show off the dance. Either way it's pretty cool, and now it is in the Hurricanes football collection.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Finally Some Light At The End Of The Tunnel

For quite some time I have been mentioning the new hobby room. I've mentioned how it is a bigger room, and will hopefully give me a better layout than the current room. After all this time the new room is finally starting to come together. This is why there have been no posts since Wednesday. The process of making the move has begun. You can't begin to imagine the excitement I've been feeling.

For the last couple of months the room somehow became the storage room once again. It has gotten to the point where you couldn't walk  more than a few inches past where the door would swing. Those days are gone though as it will stay a storage room for awhile, but my stuff won't be affected. Then at a later point it will become a room taken over by the wife.

For me I'm hoping the move will re-inspire the ability to put out not just more posts, but quality posts once again. Even thinking about what to do has been tough when it is nearly impossible to get into your cards. Last night for the first time in awhile I got to pick up binders with cards. It was a great feeling, and a reality check at the same time. The reality is I'd like to start getting to work on the baseball cards soon. Thinking about the organizing I've already done. I need to go through all that, and improve upon it. It's amazing to think that I'm saying this, but all the organizing was done without much knowledge. Now that I've dove back into cards full force, and write this blog. I've learned so much more, and realize they need to be better organized for me to not only enjoy. I need them better organized to make adding cards into when I get them. Throw in a few new sets I've started, and subsets. You have what I thought worked at one time, but now realize is technically still a mess. With cards being fun I'm looking very forward to this project. Who knows how I will share the progress I make, but it will be done somehow. Until then I will just keep plugging along.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

The Lost Files- Road America, & Kansas

The good news is there haven't been too many of these posts this year. The bad news is with these two having hit the over two month mark since being sent out. I am at the same amount of artelopes missing this year as I had all of last year. It seems like my missing atelopes go in pairs, and this is no different. Sent out in early June while I was on a roll in getting returns from racetracks. These two broke that streak.

Road America is a road racetrack that hold a race at NASCAR's lower level Nationwide Series. The idea for the artwork was the tracks logo, but I wanted to take that one step further. After ruining a couple envelopes the design finally came together.

Kansas speedway is the newest track on the NASCAR circuit. Becoming a very popular track they did have some major traffic problems the first year of holding a NASCAR race. Widening the road eased the problems, and have helped keep the tracks popularity. This wasn't one of my greatest drawings on an envelope. At the time I was almost more desperate to get a request sent than focusing on how good my artwork for the request was. Maybe a second request in the future with better artwork will net a result.

Now that I have finally given up hope on these two requests. There are only four remaining requests pending. Three are for baseball teams, and the fourth my proudest is for football schedules. Hopefully I will get some good news on these soon.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Guitars Under The Stars

So in my last post I mentioned we were in a very busy weekend. That is due to the daughter wanting to do a local event called Guitars Under The Stars. The event was to showcase regional stuff, and some guys who have already made a name for themselves. Honestly, I don't know the big names from the regional guys so who was what I couldn't have told you until after being there all weekend.

Taking a half day of vacation Friday so we could start the journey from the second it started. We Arrived a few hours before the first set as I thought traffic would be a bit more busy than it was. We found our spot to sit, and were lucky enough to get within a few feet of the same location for all three days. Opening the festivities was a local metal band Splintered Throne. From there things got better on what I think ended up being the best day out of the three. Closing things out was Floater which did a great job of ending the night.

Saturday was something that I have turned into just a blur as I'd like to forget. There were only a couple people we enjoyed. After watching them we left the event before the last show went on stage. My most memorable part of Saturday had to be Larry Mitchell who had the small crowd eating out of his hands. His excitement about being there was so contagious that it was great watching him play. Before ending his set he even walked off stage while playing, and took pictures with people. It was a truly awesome moment that made this a very special festival.

Sunday got back to greatness as the main stage opened with a Seattle band called The Guessing Game. They much like Mitchell played the crowd well, and had us all wishing they could have played longer.  As the day wore on things only got better. Despite not knowing who they were we enjoyed Gary Hoey followed by Pat Travers Band.

Ending the entire festival was the headliner, and none other than Lita Ford. She did an awesome job with Gary Hoey spending half of her set playing guitar with her group.

My only complaint was her set was maybe one hour, and fifteen minutes tops. Would have liked to hear more from the person who they promoted the most.

The good news is while writing this the facebook site says they will be doing this again next year. Hopefully they can get some of the loose ends I noticed fixed. It would be great to see this as a yearly event.

(Both pictures are from the facebook page as I didn't get any pictures worth sharing.)

Sunday, August 10, 2014

A Tulsa Delivery

One of the guys I used to work with left a few months ago to move close to Tulsa. Before leaving I asked if he would pick me up some Drillers schedules, and that I would happily pay the postage to send them my direction.

Exchanging texts every so often it had been two months since our last contact. Then surprisingly this week someone mentioned his name, and if anyone had heard from him. Two days later I had their answer as a phone call came from said friend. He called to say he was in town, and would personally drop off what he had for me.

Knocking on the door we stepped outside as the dog hates visitors to his house. I could see a huge stack of stuff with rubber band wrapped schedules on the very top.

Not wanting to be rude, and start looking through the stuff I started to talk. He went into showing me he'd gotten two magnet schedules to go with the pocket style.

Looking at the promotions on the magnet while scanning it I realized one thing. If I lived around Tulsa I would be sporting no less than six new Drillers jersey's if everything fell into place.

While I would like to say that I'd have a blanket to wear over my jersey's when it's cold. I can't say that, as I had a chance to add a Eugene Emeralds blanket, and didn't go to that game.

Closing out the goodies haul was the opening week issue of Drillers Magazine. He gave me three of the same issue. Maybe when the hobby room is coming together I can dream up a display of some sort to use atleast one of the issues on.

These magazine's are such a cool thing to find at games. I always pick them up in Eugene, and read them for information. It is so much more fun to read them when they pertain to your favorite team. If you get the chance to pick these up for either your favorite team, or any of their affiliates pick it up.

Right now I haven't had the chance to give this thing a read, and who knows when the chance will present itself. With everything going on it'll be a few weeks before things slow down enough to consider it. Until then all these will go into the pile we all have. The waiting to be organized into the collection pile.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Happy Birthday Smokey

On Thursday I heard that today is the 70th birthday for one Smokey Bear. While there are a few more cards I'd like to show the one picture from an internet search is all you get today. The cat house is crazy busy until Monday morning as the daughter, and myself are currently rocking out at a music festival.

Despite the busy weekend I just have to give Smokey his props. Growing up we lived near the forests so I grew up hearing the Smokey Bear message constantly. I to this day still remember the comic books, and loved reading them. Now as a parent I picked up a couple when the daughter was younger. and read them to her. All hoping that the message I learned as a kid will be passed on to her. While the comics seem to come, and go atleast the message is always the same.

Hopefully Smokey gets another seventy years as we still need to hear what he has to say just as much today as we did seventy years ago. There have been a few times on the way to work lately they have been running radio commercials for Smokey Bear. Hearing them gets me feeling a little nostalgic, and excited that they are getting his name out there for this new generation.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

He's Not The Manliest Dog

From reading, and hearing things to do with dogs. They say if you are a man that the least manliest dog is the Chihuahua. Something about it being a tiny thing that doesn't look very fierce. This hasn't stopped the dogs from gaining popularity. Lucky for me we have a part Chihuahua, and part Terrier that weighs more than the usual Chihuahua. He has his moments of being brave, and those of being a scared dog.

What does all this have to do with baseball you ask? That popularity has translated over to the new San Diego Padres triple A affiliate the El Paso Chihuahuas. While I don't have the numbers, it's my belief that at the end of the year when merchandise numbers are released.  El Paso will be the number one team by a huge margin. My problem is a new team creates a new need for a business card to add into the baseball business card collection. Needing to add the team I sent out what I have to admit wasn't my best work this year.

Honestly I was starting to give up hope on seeing a return from El Paso, and honestly was quite shocked when I got the SASE. Included within was an apology note that mentioned the team being busy with requests for schedules, and other goodies. Inside was two schedules from the team.

Not inside was a business card that was my real reason for the mailing. This means I will give another attempt sometime this fall or just wait until spring. Maybe the next attempt will be better looking than the first.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

A Return From The Asphalt Circus

For those that don't follow NASCAR the post title refers to the nickname used by Texas Motor Speedway. The speedway which houses the largest screen in all of sports 'Big Hoss' is one of the tracks that holds two different weekends worth of NASCAR races.

Taking all this into consideration I had to make an attempt to add a business card from Texas Motor Speedway.

Using the idea of the Texas flag as the artwork. Texas Motor Speedway continued my trend of NASCAR tracks being some of my better work. While I could have gone with a circus theme I decided the flag would look cooler. From the response sent back by the speedway they appreciated the artwork as well.

Sending me five cards from various staff of the speedway. All five will be making their way into the racetrack collection.

What doesn't show very well in the scan is how good the gold racecar looks. As we all know, for some reason foil doesn't show like we all wish it would.

On a side note, I wrapped up another coat of paint on the future hobby room. Odds are the ceiling will need one final coat, and then I can start the slow process of moving into the room. Bought curtains, and a new light today so things are really starting to come together. If everything goes as planned I will be insanely busy this weekend so it'll be Monday before I can consider the start of moving the collections over.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Who Doesn't Love A Good Mystery?

Since releasing their promotion schedule before the baseball season started. Eugene had this logo staring back at you under the promotion for August 2nd. What could be so cool that they were going to make people wait to see what they were giving away?

Then came a few hints during the start of the week. Followed by letting people know that during Thursday's game they would let the cat out of the bag, and announce what it was. Being we live between a half an hour, and a full hour away. There was no hope for me learning what it was on Thursday as work would come calling early Friday. First thing in the morning I headed straight to the team's Facebook looking to see what it could be. Only to be staring back at a screen that revealed nothing, and a comment that only said "I know what it is." The suspense continued until later that night when the website revealed it would be a batting helmet.

Being I had wanted to go no matter what the promotion was, and we needed to do the oil change mention is Sunday's post. The daughter, and I made our way to the game after our other fun side trips. Arriving about twenty minutes before the gate opened we took our place in line, and waited. With the temperatures soaring, and the gates about to open a set of sprinklers came on, and chaos followed. I could see a pretty good group of people all rush over, and start basking in the water, my daughter being one of them. Catching up to me soaking wet as we were about to enter the park, and get our helmets.

Wanting to wear mine during the game I was denied as they don't fit my head size. They might actually fit, but just not the way I wear hats so I didn't attempt to hard.

Before game-time the Emeralds mascot Sluggo was tearing it up as he started a water fight between him, and the visiting team Everett Aquasox. Normally I'd have a few pictures to share, but I left the big camera at home, and didn't want to take pictures with the phone camera. Kind of wanted to sit, and enjoy the moment without pictures for some reason. I did take a phone shot during the game though

The game itself was great. Both teams hitters came out to play as both team racked up six runs through seven. With two outs in the bottom of the eighth the Emeralds hit a home run to take a 7-6 lead. Closing out the Aquasox in the ninth to send home the fans happy.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Saturday Going Ons

Things got busy around here for the weekend starting Saturday morning. Wanting to get a head start on the room painting I got up, went and got paint, then came home to get straight to work. Sadly the painting isn't going as planned, and might end up forcing me to do a much darker color than I originally wanted.

Completing the first coat we needed to go get the oil changed in the car next. This required a driver down to Eugene, and the dealership. No big deal, as I was going to see the Emeralds game that night anyway. More about that on Monday's planned posting.

Wanting to get out of the house the daughter went along, and needed to help kill three hours before the gates opened for the game. Her idea was to make a quick trip to Claire's, and the mall. My idea was to hit the card shop, and Goodwill. Deciding to make my two stops before hitting Claire's then the game. Off to the card shop we went. Coming away with only two cards for the player collections I still feel like this was a successful trip.

Nothing too spectacular here, but it is a new card for the Trout collection.

Another card that isn't spectacular, but fills a need. This card goes with all my other 2013 Bowman cards, and was one missing from the group.

I've been looking for it every time I stop in at a card shop or a card show hoping that one day it would pop up, and join the Rosario binder. Saturday was finally that day.

Spending some time chatting it up with the shop owner we made our way to Goodwill where I hit gold.

Logo baseball's have been this thing I have been collecting, and then slowed down my purchasing of drastically lately.  I have quite the large amount of these things, and thought until I get them all organized the buying of them should stop. A Disneyland fifty anniversary ball doesn't count in the purchase stop. We love Disney around here so this ball gets a pass.

Nothing too exciting followed as we did the mall thing, and then headed for the park. These three things though made for a good day of finds if you ask me, and I'm thrilled to be adding them.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Rubber Duckie Your The One

With baseball season for some of the minor leagues starting to slowly wind down. I started to think that now might be the time to try, and nail down some of the teams that I'm still missing business cards for. With that in mind I came up with an atelope to send out to the Akron Rubber Ducks.

This was my second attempt this season for a business card from the Rubber Ducks. Akron went through a name change from the Aeros to the Rubber Ducks this off season. The new name paying homage to the local tire industry. What this meant is I needed to update the collection with a card for the new name. After a first attempt that came up with a couple pocket schedules. I had to give it one more shot before admitting defeat, and waiting for next year.

Success! This time the team only sent two business cards, and no schedules. No big deal, as all I wanted was a business card for the collection anyway. Now the collection is back to normal with the Eastern League going back to being complete.

Hopefully this is a good sign as I have seven artelopes roaming for business cards. An eighth is out looking for pocket schedules for the upcoming college football season. Sadly three of the seven might never make it home, and are very close to joining the missing files.return. This return has me feeling hopeful for their finding the way home.