I feel like I ask myself that every day as I contemplate what I can put into a new post. I haven't had many of those lately, mostly because the answer to that question has been "not much."
There isn't a lot going on. My passion for Bowman seemed to crash and burn with the release of Chrome. What a let down. I worried that with the addition of more autographs per box that the quality of the product would go down. Little did I know that it would go off the edge of a cliff.
I would usually be getting geared up for Bowman draft, but the let-down of Chrome has me doubting that I will invest much in it. Update hit the streets and I did buy a jumbo box. I'm happy to report that that one box gave me the entire set plus multiple duplicates. However, it seems that whoever was doing the data input just decided "it's Update - f*ck it" and let a ton of errors slide (duplicate numbering, numbering format issues, you name it). It really was a piss-poor showing if I've ever seen one. I'll talk more about that later.
I worked to make some changes on the blog. Work, both at the office and at home, has hindered that process. I have some of the hits for trade up and I have some assorted base cards listed, but it still sits incomplete. James and Melinda - I haven't forgotten either of you - I still want to work out some trades, but I want you to know what all I have available!
My Luke Jackson PC has slowed, mostly because I can't afford or find the remaining cards I need for the Rainbow and the asking prices for his 2011 Bowman cards are ridiculous. I've been picking up some Matt Harrison cards here and there, but nothing to really say "Look at this card!"
Which leaves me with my team set project. It's funny how just a few weeks can change collecting habits. For me, at least. A couple months ago, I had the team set project put away in a shoebox, shoved into a dark corner of my collection. then I decided to put the sets into pages and binders, and now it gets me excited.
But just because I haven't been active on my blog doesn't mean that I haven't been reading, thinking about considering some issues associated with our hobby. One thing particularly has been on my mind: retail versus hobby.
Some of the hobby boards have been complaining about hits found in retail packages. The argument I hear most is that, "those of us who buy from hobby shops pay more and should therefore receive all/the best hits." This bothers me because it isn't a tone I hear from the blogosphere. The tone I have grown accustomed to is one of sharing and community, neither of which are portrayed with this mentality. Let me offer my thoughts on the question.
Hobby sales are the lifeblood of this hobby, there are no two ways about that. From brick-and-mortar shops to sellers who have decided to have solely a digital presence, hobby sales make the world go round. If you live in a city that has a hobby shop, awesome!
However, retail has a very vital role as well. First, not all collectors can afford to walk in a hobby shop and pay upwards of $100 for a hobby box. They can, however, afford to walk to the card aisle at Walmart and spend $20 on a blaster. Now, if a retail collector is active on the Internet, he will notice that hobby boxes have some pretty nice hits (though Topps has shown us this year that the term "hit" is certainly relative - I know that Topps and I have very different definitions of the word). If that retail collector doesn't have a shot at a hit here and there, why would they keep purchasing the product? Companies have to give a little in return for the customer continuing to purchase the retail packs.
Let's take a look at that customer, too. Not everyone lives in a city with a card shop close. I live in the third largest metropolitan area in the country and it is more than an hour and a half to the nearest card shop. Retail offers "rural" collectors an opportunity to buy cards, one they might not otherwise be afforded. And if that collector gets a nice hit, I assure you he will be more likely to make the long journey to a hobby shop and make a purchase.
Anyway, I didn't mean to get off on such a long tangent, but reading those selfish comments really pissed me off and I needed to vent. Please don't hate me.