48005 (Armada, MI)
19713 (Newark, DE)
03801 (Portsmouth, NH)
76380 (Seymour, TX)
02766 (Norton, MA)
83605 (Caldwell, ID)
02919 (Johnston, RI)
13601 (Watertown, NY)
91770 (Rosemead, CA)
CT8 8BH (Westgate-on-Sea, Kent)
And yet, I still have more packages to put together. But those will come, soon.
Last week, I got an excellent PWE from Dime Box Nick. Nick and I have sent envelopes and packages back and forth over the past year or so, and Nick never fails to amaze. This time, he sent me a note saying he was "bequeathing" his Ryan Braun collection to me. Since Nick is an old soul at heart, I feel like a song from the 1980s is appropriate here:
Not sure if you're into the Pet Shop Boys at all, but I certainly remember it. Now, Nick did not limit himself only to Ryan Braun.
But, since I'm in an 80s mood, how about some 80s songs to go with the cards Nick sent? These are all taken from a playlist I used to have on an iPod that's been reconstituted (sort of) on Spotify now. I'm not sure how much these songs have to do with the cards, but we'll see how it goes as I go along.
Card 1, 2, & 3: 2007 Braun Allen & Ginter Mini & Mini A&G Back Parallel and Braun's 2008 Allen & Ginter Mini
Let's see...what song goes with a guy who came into the league seemingly as a superstar immediately and whose later work seems a bit ... uneven ... since his steroid supply was cut off?
Yeah, I gotta start with the boys from Waukesha, The Bodeans, and their hit from 1986, "Fadeaway." That's a video from a live show from the Pabst Theatre in Milwaukee -- and man, I wish I had been at that concert. Just great roots-rock that probably wouldn't see the light of radio today.
Card #4: Corey Hart 2008 Baseball Heroes Black Parallel
Now, I could go with a Corey Hart song here -- yes, "Sunglasses at Night" might work, even if Hart is pictured in a day game without sunglasses -- but for me, a Corey Hart card talking about him doing good things reminds me of how injuries have sapped his abilities. Maybe Pirates and Mariners fans might agree with me after watching Hart's shambolic efforts at playing baseball over the past two years too, but Crowded House seems appropriate here.
Corey should stop dreaming and realize that he's had a good career but, "Hey now, hey now, don't dream -- it's over."
Card #5: Ryan Braun's 2010 Topps Wal-Mart Black Parallel
This one is easy.
Sorry, no AC/DC "Back in Black" (though that would work too), but rather Depeche Mode's "Black Celebration." To be fair, I wasn't one of those goth kids back in the 1980s, but my musical tastes weren't that far off from being goth.
Card #6-10: 2008 Upper Deck O-Pee-Chee Insert, 2008 Bowman Gold, 2008 Topps Turkey Red, & 2012 Topps Heritage Target Parallel
Danny Elfman provided the musical scores for approximately half the movies released during the 1980s. "Weird Science" accompanied the movie by the same name. To be fair, I actually like the song "Dead Man's Party" more, but it doesn't fit here as well.
Cards 11, 12, & 13: More Ryan Braun: 2008 Heriage Chrome SN411/552, 2009 Topps Heritage Mayo Insert, and 2011 Topps Lineage Popup
God, I wish the Brewers could trade away Ryan Braun and his contract. I would be shocked if anyone would take it on, but it's fairly clear that either the steroids were keeping his thumb from feeling pain, the steroids destroyed his thumb's internal musculature and tendons, or that the cryogenic therapy on his thumb works only in small doses. Braun has gone from being a .319/.391/.595 hitter in 2012 at age 28 to being a .266/.328/.466 hitter over his last 200+ games (876 plate appearances) starting at the beginning of last season.
It's more depressing than Goth music. Just thinking about it brings Morrissey, Johnny Marr, and the boys to mind..."Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now."
Cards #14 & 15: Ben Sheets 2005 Donruss Elite and Studio
Sheets was a workhorse, so how about a favorite R.E.M. song from the 1980s?
I don't know why that song always was a favorite, but it was.
Card #16: 1992 (?) Robin Yount Sports Cards News and Price Guides #30
Let's close this post with the coolest card in the entire envelope -- a fantastic Yount oddball that doesn't even appear in the Beckett listings. Such a great card deserves an upbeat song, but I have to admit -- I tend not to be a big fan of poppy, cheery, upbeat songs. It's not that I'm a dour person. I just find a lot of it to be very shallow and forgettable. But, there's one song that I'm okay with here:
I mean, if the Outfield doesn't get you upbeat and singing along, what will?
Nick, I have no idea whether you like any of this music, but I do appreciate the cards greatly despite the Black Celebration of being Miserable Now!