Sunday, June 26, 2016

Chipmunk Contest Update #2

It's been three weeks since I started trapping chipmunks for my 2016 Relocation Program. The 9 Day Chipmunk Streak was broken as soon as I mentioned it in my last update. I jinxed myself. Go figure.

I've taken five days off from trapping, because we visited family one day and I attended a four day Advanced Placement Summer Institute last week in the south suburbs of Chicago. (For the record, I teach AP Calculus for my day job and the training was a little dry, but it had to be done. Basically it was like attending math camp. Yeesh.)

Here are the youtube links to the visual proof of the most recent trappings:

Chipmunk #23
Chipmunk #24
Raccoon #1
Chipmunks #25 & #26
Chipmunk #27
Chipmunk #28 & Squirrel #2
Chipmunk #29
Chipmunk #30

My wife asked me to go after the raccoons, so I borrowed my dad's trap and have been setting that up before I turn in each evening. Only one so far in five nights, but I did remove fifteen raccoons from the neighborhood back in 2014. Maybe the one I've trapped was the the one making the mess in our backyard?

Here are your updated standings:

List of ALL 33 Entries:    (chipmunks, others, Cubs Wins, blogger)
5             3             69           irondequoit36
8             13           74           Tony L.
10           5             77           Stealing Home
12           7             79           JediJeff
13           3             81           Adam Kaningher
13           8             82           The Angels in Order
18           6             75           Mark Hoyle
22           2             79           Matthew Scott
26           6             76           Play at the Plate
27           4             75           Al Kawamoto
28           5             76           Nick
30           3             48          CURRENT NUMBERS (76 win pace)
31           1             69           The Lost Collector
34           7             81           Daniel Wilson
35           4             85           John Hazen
36           8             77           Jupiterhill
36           9             74           Swing And a Pop-up
37           3             77           Jane
37           8             107         B Man
38           3             71           jaybarkerfan
39           6             70           gcrl
42           5             78           Nachos Grande
42           6             83           CaptKirk42
44           4             74           KO Rob
47           3             76           Captain Canuck
49           4             80           Sport Card Collectors
49           9             78           Once A Cub
50           4             70           Fuji
52           4             79           RAZ
52           5             75           Adam Sanders
53           4             75           Wilson
55           3             81           Corky
61           12           79           defgav
74           3             74           Jeff
If the contest ended right now The Lost Collector would come away victorious, but I'm fairly certain there's more varmint to trap. Just yesterday I trapped chipmunks #28, #29, #30 and squirrel #2.  When we first moved into this house in 2008 I trapped SIXTY chipmunks and I'm currently halfway to that standard. It will be interesting to see where this winds up!
For what it's worth, I purchased a new trap while in Chicagoland and that seems to be working out much better. The smaller chipmunks weren't setting off the old trap because they didn't weigh enough to trigger it, and if they did set it off they were able to squiggle through the bars and escape to freedom. It was quite frustrating and I lost a LOT of unsalted peanuts as a result. I was hoping to use some of those peanuts as an ice cream topping!
Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, June 25, 2016

A Sweet PWE to Start the Weekend

Everybody's favorite dime box aficionado, Nick, sent be another high quality PWE yesterday. If you're ever looking to make my day with cardboard, then just follow this template:

1. First add in current Cubs.

 Over the last couple of years I've adopted a philosophy of trading for current product rather than purchasing. Receiving cards of Edwards, Rondon, Soler, Lester and Bryant are always guaranteed to make me smile. Don't forget the cards of guys like Hendricks, Montero, Ross, Fowler and Coghlan. I love them all . . . all the way down to the third string catcher.

2. Add a touch of vintage or vintage-esque cards. (The Lester fits more in category number one, than here, but that's not the way I planned it when snapping the photos.)
Billy Williams. Ernie Banks. Ron Santo. Fergie Jenkins. Those are the big four, other big names are Randy Hundley, Glenn Beckert, Don Kessinger, Hack Wilson, 3-finger Brown or Gabby Hartnett. I'm not picky, any Cub will do . . . actual vintage or more modern day productions like the 2001 Fleer Greats of the Game Billy Williams card above.

3. Include a card for one of my player collections.
I obviously like Kerry Wood, but I also collect Ryno, the VOGELMONSTER, Kosuke Fukudome, and Brooks Kieschnick.
See the trivia question on the back of the SI for Kids card?  Argh. Talk about beating a dead horse. Hint: Try not to remind me of 1908 when sending a package. (As a fellow Cub fan I know Nick meant no offense.)

4. Throw in something to help with one of my set builds.

I'm a set builder at heart, at least that's way I came into this hobby back in 1988. Now I'm chasing things a little bit more interesting than junk wax.  Exhibit A: The Conlon Collection!

Thanks for the sweet package, Nick! 
And thanks to you, the reader, for stopping by.  Enjoy the weekend!

Friday, June 24, 2016

Pack and a Plug

First, let's get to the plug! Sport Card Collectors is hosting a Pick'em style Sports Challenge Contest. You have about 8 hours left to get in on the action!  Go! Go! Go!

Now the pack. I hit up The Baseball Card King #1 while in Chicagoland this past week. I had a good time sifting through their boxes of prospects, Cubs, and autographs during my time at the store and I picked up some things for my favorite bloggers. The shop has a nice inventory, but I was bummed to learn they were fresh out of Topps Pro Debut, so I walked away with the last pack of 2016 Diamond Kings instead.

What would the last pack of the box hold?

Card 1: Joe Mauer.  I didn't recognize this as Joe Mauer initially. Maybe it's the beard? Or perhaps the painted style of the card?  Or maybe the fact that I can't remember the last time I watched a Twins game?
 Cards 2 & 3: Correa is one of the hotter names in the collecting world. Archer has nice socks, played in Peoria as a Chief, but has struggled on the mound this year. Two out of three ain't bad I suppose.

 Cards 4 & 5: Beltre is one of my favorite non-Cubs, but mostly because of his antics with Elvis Andrus. Lefty O'Doul? I bought two packs in Chicago and both contained a retired outfielder from Philadelphia. The other was a blue parallel of Richie Ashburn from Archives.

 Cards 7 & 8: Yes, I skipped #6.  I know that and there's a good reason for it.
 A couple of rookies were the last cards in the pack and since I don't know much about them I might as well show the backs at this time.
 I like how the team's colors are featured prominently on the back of the card.

And now finally we get to ...
Card 6: Here's another back and this one is numbered to 299.  Miguel Sano?  Nice!
 Here's the front!  Dual patch and auto!  Score!
 Sano is on my fantasy league team, but this one is more than likely headed to Completely Arbitrary and Highly Subjective blogger.

Thanks for stopping by today. I hope you enjoyed the back rip!

Monday, June 20, 2016

Contest Pimping and A Lesson Learned

So, I'm in the south Chicago suburbs this week as I attend math camp. Yes, you read correct. Math. Camp.
I'm an AP Calculus teacher and the College Board has recently reworked the curriculum I teach, which means I'm at a week long Advanced Placement Summer Institute in JediJeff's backyard. I guess he didn't want to see me mathing up the joint so he took off for Colorado yesterday. Someday our paths will cross, Jeff, someday.

I had a little time after math camp today and before the Cubs game was on television so I searched for a card shop in the map application on my iPhone and jumped in the car. I was excited to by some cardboard at a new store!

I wish my application would have shown this screen:
Or this one:

Or maybe I should have called first, because my app didn't mention that either store was permanently closed.

I was in an adventuresome mood and just took off driving in the south suburbs.

Did you know that the roads get really crowded around 5 o'clock on a weekday in Oswego and Naperville? You do now. You're welcome.

I'll call next time. Yes, I will call.

Tomorrow I'm road-tripping it to Wrigley to see my only scheduled Cubs game at Wrigley
Field this year. Wish the Cubs luck for me!

Wednesday I'll head to JediJeff's LCS, which I know is open. It's a crazy cool store and I can't wait to set foot inside again. It has . . . get this . . . two levels!  Whoa!

So, while I'm hitting up the Cubs game and going to a cool card shop you should do something worthwhile as well: ENTER SPORT CARD COLLECTORS' Topps Tier One Contest!  It's not everyday a blogger breaks a box of Tier One AND gives away one of the cards. Check it out!

Saturday, June 18, 2016

A Trade Post Leaves Me Talking SMack

Jimmy, from S.Mack Talk, reached out to me about the Giants from Topps' NL Standouts I purchased last week and we quickly ironed out a trade. 

The cards I received crossed off some cards from my set builds and added a few to my player collections, which definitely put a smile on my face.

Here's a nice Eddie Mathews from Fleer's 2000 set titled "Greats of the Game".

I only need two now!  Any one have a spare Warren Spahn or Stan Musial they aren't using?

Meanwhile, I need somewhere near a thousand Conlon cards. But, every little bit helps!

Kid K?  Heck yeah!
I'm not sure how I was missing Wood's 2009 Topps flagship card. Hole filled!
 This 2000 Upper Deck Gold Reserve is a pretty solid looking card. I miss Upper Deck.
The same can be said for the above 2001 Fleer Authority card of Kerry. I think he's fielding a bunt and making a throw to first... um, or maybe that is his pitching motion on a slant? I'm not quite sure. Nevertheless, I'm up to 464 different Kerry Wood cards now.

A second player collection got a nice boost as well: Brooks Kieschnick!
 I love these 1994 Action Packed cards, because they have a raised texture which helps bring them to life a little bit.
 Here's the backs of the Action Packed cards. It looks black, but that's gold fold around the red letters of Kieschnick's name on both cards. Lots of gold foil!
 This last card is simple and clean. I like it.  Plus, I don't have many of Brooks' time with the Iowa Cubs.
I like to think of myself as the #1 Kieschnick collecting blogger in the world. I'm now at 45 unique cards! KaBoom! Take that blogosphere! I put all of your puny Kieschnick collections to shame! Bwhahahahahaha!

(BUT, I know Kieschnick is also on Gavin's radar, so maybe I should temper my ego a tad. I never was any good at SMack Talk.)

Thanks for the great assortment of cards, Jimmy!