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This show and tell has been brought to you in part by: Mark, Greg, Ryan, Allan, Ilana, Matt, Mike, Brandon, Sam, Luke, Thomas, among others…and viewers like you.

It can be challenging to write something interesting - at least to me - about a group of cards that gets smaller and smaller every day. It’s both a blessing and a curse to have turned most of my traders into cards that have a home in my personal collection. On the one hand it means that I’ve never had more cards to pick up and say to myself when no one’s listening “muahahaha, you’re mine all mine.” It’s fun, you should try it.

[Image: BryanLittleOPCBuyback.jpg]
Go ahead, no one can hear you.

Of course it also means that unless you’re buying enough boxes and singles to replenish your pool of swappable cards (I’m not), the well can run dry pretty quickly. Pretty soon, you’re thinking about trading away cards that would under normal circumstances stay in the PC.

Here’s one example:

[Image: JordanEberleSPxRC.jpg]
So wait, you’re saying I’m gonna have to add on for a Malkin SPA RC right?

Maybe it’s all for the better though since I’m running out of new things to say about the cards that have been coming in.

For instance, have look at this beauty (courtesy of gmccarth):

[Image: KovalchukYoungStarsAU.jpg]
Awesome.

What else can you say about a rookie year autograph /300 of an amazing player? I mean, how many different ways can a person say that he thinks these cards are each at various levels of awesome?

Well?

[Image: ZetterbergSPxRC.jpg]
Still awesome.

If I’m being honest though, I know everyone thinks their own cards are legendary (even if, shhh, sometimes they’re not. J/k!) The real point behind these posts is that I want anyone who bothers to read this stuff to know just how important and special all these cards are to me. One reason in particular came to me recently and it’s not what you’d expect; it’s actually kind of serious.

This isn’t a cheap hobby. A solid middle-of-the-market product like a hobby box of Artifacts can easily run you $120. If you’re making six figures, that’s 4 or 5 hours of work out of a 12-hour workday. Those are 5 hours of your life you’ll never have back just so you can open 10 packs. If you make close to federal minimum wage, $7.25/hr, that’s more than two full days’ worth of work before you can even begin dreaming about a box. I just need to pause and think about that for a sec…

But no one’s really complaining because we love the hobby that much. Oh, there’s griping about price points from time to time, and rightfully so, but it’s a dimension of the hobby that we by and large have learned to accept.

[Image: PKaneUltAchievements_zps0a6a9ca0.jpg]
A box is HOW much??!?

The sheer number of “hits” floating around out there is so overwhelming that sometimes it’s easy to forget how extraordinary some of these cards really are, in no small part due to the amount of energy and time people expend in order to make a great card available to others.

[Image: DucheneFWABGS95.jpg]
This is not an easy pull.

When I do get a chance to open a box of my own, it’s a special event but inevitably, the “hits” I get are so far off from the quality of cards I receive through trades that it’s kind of a letdown.

This is the last card I pulled that's stayed in my PC:

[Image: LehtonenGameJerseyPatch.jpg]
Mmm, caaase hiiit.

Don’t get me wrong, I really dig the Lehtonen. Last year’s Game Jersey design is in my opinion the best in recent memory, but it probably wouldn’t have made it into my PC if I hadn’t pulled it myself. It’s not one of those cards that makes you dizzy when you first see it. Yup collecting sometimes brings the bellyaching out of a guy, you got me.

Coming at it from a different vantage point though, one major cause of that feeling of disappointment – the awesomeness of the cards that people trade to me for which my own pulls are no match - makes you appreciate your cards even more.

Take for example the card I got in this week:

[Image: LindrosTreasuredSwatches.jpg]

If I’d pulled this Lindros out of a box, I’d be running around in circles and dancing a jig all at the same time. I’d be really happy. It’s got to be your lucky day to pull a card as sweet as that Lindros.

It’s not unheard of to end up with something like this as your best hit:

[Image: BrettHullArtifactsBaseSapphire85.jpg]
Wow this card is…blue. Ok, SAPPHIRE. Nerd.

I think sometimes I lose sight of the fact that most of the cards I trade for are the top hits from great boxes…far greater than the ones we, or at least I, typically open.

For example, rczubaty sent me this gem and went out of his way to do it:

[Image: GetzlafArtifactsPatch.jpg]
I don't know what he was thinking.

It’s my favorite Artifacts card and it'll be a blast to try and track down a Red one. Anyways, you can probably tell by now that I've been in an Artifacts-y state of mind. It helps that parallelguy set me up with a few goodies in return for helping out with his 12-13 Jersey Patch project, goodies that made me realize I'm actually in search of the patch parallels /9 and /15.

Here’s the best example of that revelation:

[Image: CoutureArtifactspatch.jpg]
If this card doesn't do the trick, it's not the card, it's you.

Mswatson traded me an even more spectacular 12-13 Jersey Patch /65 that's helping me toward that same goal. If you’re wondering by now where all this sudden interest in Artifacts comes from, all I can say is I try and follow that maxim “collect what you like.” Problem is, I like a whole lot of stuff. And since as I’ve mentioned trades have outstripped purchases, I find myself trading away cards that would’ve stayed in my PC were I not distracted - like a moth to flame - by ever higher PC priorities.

For example, ya’ll have met my Sakic:

[Image: th_SakicArtifactsHorizontalPathJersey.jpg]

At first I thought maybe I should continue down that Emerald path…Getzlaf too:

[Image: th_SakicArtifactsJsyPatchEmeraldpre.jpg][Image: th_GetzlafArtifactsJsyPatchEmeraldpre.jpg]

They’re both guys I collect but alas, the Lindros came along and messed those plans up. Don’t let the trade fool you though, it’s been a pretty Getzlaf-heavy time the past few months too.

I mean check this baby out:

[Image: RyanGetzlafYG.jpg]
C’mon Ryan, you’re not a BV12 player…pick it up (except when you play the Sharks).

Doesn’t get much sweeter than*waaait a minute, that wasn’t the card I was thinking about. What was I was trying to link to again? I could’ve sworn I had another one lying around somewhere.

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Let me just set this down right here while I try and remember (thanks JerseyGirl!):

[Image: GetzlafCupARPdark2ndtrydot1.jpg]

Anyways, these are still lean times for a lot of people in this country, myself included. And with Thanksgiving fast-approaching and harvests being celebrated around the world, it seems like an appropriate time to give thanks for all the good fortune we have, wherever we find it. Thank you very much!
So many really good pickups, but that Getzlaf is the nicest one..
Great post, very enjoyable read
love the Zetterberg
That was a great read, I enjoyed your show and look foward to the next episode.
Great post and a very good read. Those are some amazing additions to the PC but I would have to say the Cup Getzlaf and the Artifacts Lindros are my favs.
Great read Alan, I love all the Artifacts patch cards, they are really sweet!!! But the Getzlaf takes the cake, stunning pickup there!! Congrats!!!
I'd be interested in the Artifacts Brett Hull blue .......errr.... I mean Sapphire card if its for trade.
You are a great writer, Al! Thanks for the brilliant read and laughs. Congrats on the awesome PC adds!

Randi
wow a great post

i hope everyone has a great thanksgiving!!
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