Sunday, December 22, 2013

I'm predictable and I don't care.

Yesterday my wife and I trekked over to my parents' house, through the freezing rain, to join my grandfather and sister to celebrate my mom and I's birfdays.  

Just the six of us.  We dined on pizza and cheesecake.  We laughed and played games.  Low key, relaxing, comfortable, and no spotlight... just the way I prefer to celebrate.  It was a great afternoon.

I always seem to struggle with finding something meaningful and/or practical to give my loved ones.  Me on the other hand... they must see me as an easy target, because every gift landed in the center of the bull's eye.  I'm predictable and I don't care.

Baseball cards?  Check.  My parents found this box set at their neighbor's estate sale this past summer for less than a dollar.  I've never seen these before and I'm happy to add my 694th unique Ryne Sandberg to my collection.

My sister gave me some gloves that I can wear and still use my smartphone.  My wife gave me a pack of my favorite clicky pens for school.  And Mom and Dad bought me some snack bars for me to devour during passing periods to help me get through the school day.

I then opened a smaller box and found my favorite "salad" dressing.  I use the quotation marks because I'll use it on salad and pretty much anything else I can find in the refrigerator.  It's an obnoxious shade of red, but it is sooooo good.  If I behave myself I should be able to make it last a full year.  Laura, my wife, is the best.

My mom and dad are always on the look out for gifts during the year and they found a beauty.  I'm always interested in sprucing up the man room with more baseball related signage and they found something that looks vintage, has a pitcher on it, and has a baseball card tie-in to it.  Again, I'm an easy target for things like this.

 I'm running out of room on the walls in my man room, and I may have to spill out into the hallway with my decorations.  Especially when one considers that I must find more space for something my sister picked up for me:

 I believe these guys are die cast aluminum and they're each about 9 to 10 inches tall.  Fantastic!  Again, my sister found these during the summer and she has been sitting on them the last few months.  What a find!

Oh, but she out did herself...  check this next one out.

Yeah, it's a smaller version of the bases they used on the field during the 2003 All-Star Game and it's been signed by one of my two favorite players of all time: Mr. Kerry Wood. 

I have bats, gloves, jerseys, hats, and now I have a base!  Holy cow!

Then there's my grandfather...  he doesn't do the shopping thing anymore, but that's okay.    I absolutely love this card he picked out for me. 

I try to take Grandpa out to lunch once a week during the summer and on my holidays during the school year.  We talk sports, family, the quality of the hamburger he's enjoying.  He loves a good hamburger.  Sometimes he'll tell me stories about his younger years.  Stories about his school days, how he met my grandmother, and stories about when my mom and dad were young.  Those are my favorite days.

Getting sappy and overly sentimental isn't something that we'll spend our time on, but we enjoy each others company.  I guess this card hits that last point home.  It makes me smile.

There you have it.  My favorite card I received for my birtfday isn't a sports card.  Huh, go figure.  I didn't see that one coming.

Again, I'm predictable, easy to shop for, and I don't care.  In fact, I wouldn't change a thing.


  1. That's awesome Tom, great post!

    Nothing wrong with being predictable, and that signed base is the bomb!!

  2. Wow, excellent haul... and happy belated birfday!

    That set with the Ryne Sandberg is referred to as the "TV All Star" set, because it was one of a number of sets sold regionally through TV offers (and not through any other outlets). They're relatively rare by 1990 standards... $1 for the entire set was something of a steal.