March 27, 2017 § Leave a comment
Forgive me as this post is not about cards, although the last few entries have been more about dealing with my depression/PTSD than cards anyway but I am doing this one on purpose. I did not mean for this site to be a journal about my life outside of cards, just my life involving cards. The climax of this story involves cards and I am using it to take an opportunity to show the disease.
Anyone that follows wrestling and reads wrestling news once a week is probably aware that WWE Smackdown announcer Mauro Ranallo has been out for mental health reasons. A lot of people don’t accept that mental health issues are a disease. I have them and truthfully it has taken me until very recently to truly accept that fact. Something happened to me Saturday to highlight the very fact that it is a disease:
I had one of those 36 hour periods where I can look back and say that I did everything right; something that I haven’t been able to say in years. (Only saying this because it matters to me but it shouldn’t but this is not one of those bipolar highs. I wish that I had those as I would probably be a happier person during those highs instead of constantly down on myself.) The hours were one of those times where even the hiccups were just pebbles in the road; like finding out an hour before something is happening that I was expected to be there. So I am doing work in the house and decide to take a breather and grab the mail. I wasn’t expecting anything so when I see my name on a package, I immediately think ‘oh crap.’ I saw that it was from someone that I sold to on Ebay so my blood pressure goes through the roof for a second. If you read the site you know that I am awful at opening packages or anything, sorry GTS but I still haven’t opened that hobby box you sent me and for the record I am not selling that either. This was a box in front of my door. I don’t even think that I went down the driveway to my mailbox to get the rest of the mail. I ran in and opened the box thinking the worst. Either I was sent a bag of dog poop or they were returning what I sent them. I even had one hand on my mouth ready to go to Paypal for a refund. It was neither dog crap or a return. In it was a paper that said #RAOK. Random act of kindness. Holy crap; and from an Ebay person no less. So I go from horror movie excitement to Disney movie excitement in one swing. I couldn’t believe it. Even without this RAOK I was having a great day, this was the cherry on top. I will post about what was in the box later this week but remember I said this was a post about mental health. I also want to do this person justice for being awesome.
I was being productive but I was still in my head so the time wasn’t perfect. However I had no reason whatsoever to be in my head. I sit down to finish what I was doing and no less than five minutes later I felt my depression trying to come back and ruin the RAOK. I had no reason to be down but I found myself in this internal fight with myself that was trying to keep me down. It feels like with everything that I did and have been doing, I am burned out because I working twice as hard as I should be. (For the record I am not trying to discount what anyone else is going through as we all have our own problems and I know the reality is that no one would want to trade lives with anyone.) I realize that everything that I did on top of me fighting just to be together and a functioning member of society was me working twice, thrice, etc., as hard. When you hear that someone is going through mental health issues, this is a glimpse of what they are going through. Mauro Ranallo might miss a hefty Wrestlemania payday because of similar issues. I wish him, everyone struggling, and everyone in the world the best. We all deserve to be happy and have peace of mind.
Speaking of happy, my next post will be what was in that box and a TL:DR version of this story. I don’t know when exactly that will be, but it will be before the month is up as I don’t want you reading it April Fool’s Day thinking this amazing act was a joke.
March 20, 2017 § Leave a comment
So today as I was packing materials to ship, the cats decided to be where I was and play wildly. Normally I don’t mind, heck I embrace it. I haven’t had a chance to pay myself the rewards of it and it feels the only good part is that my cards are going in good hands, as I am only selling cards that are worth more to others than me. Anyway, the house is empty and the cats could’ve played anywhere. They decide to chase each other in an out of my room. It is a two story house, they have lots of places to play. Still they managed to make a few cards fly, thank God they were in toploaders and the kicker: one jumped on my computer and closed my shipping list. The only window that I was using, disappeared. It’s like a million things could’ve happened but I get the one result that pushes me to want to scream. Sure I have been on edge lately but why must the cats act like cats? Joke. I have convinced myself that closing the door and hearing them claw at the door would be more annoying. My logic isn’t sound. Ebay does that to people. Ebay is a drug.
While I am at this little stream of consciousness, I hate buying multiple items from a person and being overcharged. Ebay is aware of this and they take fees out of the shipping charge. Sometimes I even find myself losing extra money because of these fees, nothing major but it adds up. It’s like seriously dude, that one autograph card extra that I bought does not add $2 dollars, or even 50 cents worth of shipping. You could charge me the same price, or a dime more to cover the costs. Which reminds me, you know what I did today? I refunded a person over $30 for extra shipping they paid me. I should’ve given the person free shipping because they were an amazing Ebayer. They paid right away and didn’t wait for me to send them an invoice after they bought a ton of stuff from me so they ended up paying extra shipping. No one does that, this day and age. I know that I wouldn’t. I probably have bad karma coming: when leaving feedback, I rated a lot of people a 3 or lower for shipping costs even before knowing how much it really costs.
I am depressed as heck. I am sick of getting rejected by every job that I apply too. Making ends meet is hard. Being active on Ebay is robbing me of my card collecting passion. I work hard to make a few dollars a day on there but to others it looks like I am hardly working. Heck, updating this site once a week feels like a chore. Any reader that visited this past month can see this. Don’t worry I am not going to do anything stupid. I just want my depression to let me breathe, both metaphorically and physically. I am happy when I working and know that life can only go up from here. I just worry that I will take the first job that will have me instead of getting a decent one. I have a few cards left to finish off my Prestige Basketball 13-14 True Colors set. I might finish that off and just stop with Ebay altogether for a while. I can’t let my hobby be a trigger that finishes my burn out off. I am sorry for not being more active on Twitter or even other parts of the card community. I love the community.
March 14, 2017 § Leave a comment
First things first. Ebay gave me 500 free auctions so I used as many as I could before my offer expired. That is how I spent my weekend. More Ebay after I said how frustrated I was with it. I love cards so much so that is the trap that I, and I know that some of you fall in. If you think that my prices are high, compare them to the same exact card; they will be cheaper. I have a ton that aren’t listed on COMC so you can flip them there. I turned a bunch of my Buy It Now’s into auctions; really so I can be done with Ebay. Here are my auctions: http://www.ebay.com/sch/m.html?_nkw=&_armrs=1&_ipg=&_from=&_ssn=pandanwh&_sop=1
Doing a NCAA tournament group for a Misery Pack. It’s an ESPN link, and you are allowed 3 entries. Like Ebay we are all smiling until things bet busted.
October 17, 2016 § Leave a comment
My days the past few months have been pretty hectic at times. In spite of the madness, I have learned to take for myself in order to stay sane. I have one time where I cut myself off and sit down and relax no matter what: every Thursday at 6pm my time. So what is so special about Thursdays at 6 pm? It is when GoGtsLive broadcasts their livestream.
For those unfamiliar, its basically 2 hours of what is happening in the card world. They talk product releases and break products. The best part, they give away the cards they get. They have pulled some good stuff, and given it away in the chat room that night. I love it because I can watch breaks of the latest product without feeling like a creeper for not buying into it.
I don’t just watch it for the giveaways; why should I, as I never win. I keep coming back because the hosts are awesome people. Ivan, who you may know from his YouTube show ‘The Breaks‘ is one of the greatest people in the hobby – seriously if he only knew how high I thought of him. We are bound to bump into each other one day since we live in the same area, and I look forward to it. Rob usually does the breaks, and he is a great genuine person as well. You have to be a pretty special person to hold a thousand dollar card in your hand and give it away to a random person in the chat room.
I have boasted enough about the show, just like Rob does with every hit. They are doing a massive Twitter giveaway when they hit 10,000 followers. Actually massive is an understatement. They aren’t there yet, so lets help get them there.
GoGts Livestream – Thursdays at 6pm Pacific time: http://livestream.com/gts/gogtslive
Go GTS Distribution – full of hobby news: http://gogts.net/
July 14, 2016 § Leave a comment
July is only two weeks old but I am ready for it to be over. Between an unexpected vet bill, constant rejections from jobs, and trying to keep a level head because of my PTSD; I have been pretty overwhelmed. On Tuesday, I had business in Burbank. So despite money being tighter than normal, I jumped at the chance to take time and visit one of the bigger card stops on the west best coast.
Burbank Sports Cards is 2 or 3 Freeways and about 35 miles from my home, depending on how much time you want to spend on the hellacious 5 freeway. I know for some of you 35 miles is nothing but in Los Angeles traffic, 35 miles is misery. Add this to the fact that my business was during peak rush hour and the car ride felt like an eternity.
After losing 5 pounds from sweat on the way there, I finally arrived at the nondescript building. Even with the GPS on my phone, I overshot the shop by a block. When I arrived at the shop, I was worried that I came after it closed. It wasn’t; they just have a unique entrance. You have to hit a buzzer for the door to unlock for you. Considering the inventory on the premises, an entrance like this is not surprising.
I don’t know what I was expecting. At first, I just saw a typical card shop with a ton of dollar boxes for you to go through; with hobby boxes in the glass underneath that they were sitting on. On the other side was more glass cases with hobby boxes and a selection of any type of sleeve, top-loader, or protection that you can dream of for your cards and memorabilia. I was the only customer in the shop at this time and the guy in charge, started talking with me. He took me in back and showed me the warehouse. To non collectors, all you would see boxes of cards, but what I saw made my jaw drop. Boxes upon boxes in aisle after aisle. All organized and all full of cards. It was a sight to see. Afterward, he took me to a computer back in the storefront and told me how I could browse. The computer was their storefront on Beckett.com. I had time to kill so I said ‘why not.’ Now this is where my only nitpick on the place comes in. I feel the store is best appreciated by a more educated collector. If you read their Yelp reviews, you will see the reviews are clearly populated by collectors without a knowledge of the hobby; this is actually true for every card shops Yelp that I have ever seen, but more so for Burbank Sports Cards. (Side note: I gave them a legitimate 5 star review on Yelp because my day was made from the visit.) I put in an order for a few cards for $15; hey I had to walk away with something. In the time it took to help another customer, my cards arrived to the front.
So there you have it. Next time, I am coming armed with a ton of cash and my want-list.
I only took a picture of the inside when you walk in because I didn’t see a good one floating online. For a picture of the warehouse, check out a great article by Sports Collectors Daily: http://www.sportscollectorsdaily.com/volume-business-keeps-burbank-sports-cards-busy/
Update, thanks to great Twitter users: When I printed my Beckett invoice from the shop, I was cut a great deal from the printed price. I wasn’t concerned because all their cards are the lowest priced anyway.
June 23, 2016 § Leave a comment
It pays to be good to your family. I love my nephews more than anything in this world. I knew the second that they were born that I loved them unconditionally. While it may feel like they were born yesterday, they are halfway through grade school. During that time, we’ve had some amazing adventures. My personal favorite is coaching a bunch of their baseball teams. My nephews are in Boy Scouts with another kid from one of our baseball teams. The house that they have Boy Scouts at has a famous neighbor in New York Yankee first round draft pick Blake Rutherford. Rutherford, who actually played at our little league, was nice enough to stop by and visit their Scout group yesterday. Being the cool Uncle that I am, my sister immediately told me and let me come along for the visit.