If you just want to read about the cards, skip down to the next copy of the box top photo. Otherwise, continue from here and read about Snowpocalypse and my various personal news.
It snowed here a couple of nights ago, and that was a pain in the butt. On the 10th, I got stuck in the morning on the way out, and I got stuck twice on the way back home. On the way out I got stuck trying to get turned around so I could leave by way of the less treacherous side of our circle. Unfortunately I got too close to the edge and wound up with my back end stuck in a drift. My neighbor appeared with some snow melt and helped me get free. On the way back in after work I probably would have been okay, but I got a little off the center of the road because there was a truck stuck across my path. I got out and helped to push/dig them free, as did some people from the surrounding houses. Then the people helped me get free, but I didn't make it far before I got stuck again. The pushed me back and I got a better run at it, and made it home with my best Ken Block impression. I lost a couple bits from the underside of my car throughout the day, so I have that going for me. That evening my neighbor was stuck trying to get out and I went out to repay his favor from this morning, but they had already done most of the work. I managed to do a little bit, though. Two of my coworkers have flooded garages, one with a bonus leaky roof. They just had that house built, too, so that must be especially painful for them. Hopefully they still have a warranty on the work. The reason I was so motivated to get out on that particular morning was that my wife had a doctor's appointment.
It looks like we are going have a chicken nugget in August. We supposedly weren't able to have kids on our own (our first three were created with the assistance of fertility doctors and medications), but apparently life found a way to give us a surprise baby.
My kids are pretty excited to have a new sibling. They are terrible at coming up with potential names for the baby, though. I am excited, too, even though I did the math and realized that I will be 53 years old when this kid turns eighteen. Hopefully the pregnancy continues to progress like it should, and I also hope that my wife's morning sickness goes away soon, because she is miserable at the moment.
On the 11th, I made it about 200 feet from my house before the ice took the rest of the plastic out from underneath my car and pinned me in place. The guy whose truck I helped to push out on the 10th came out of his house and helped me dig out enough that I could back up and get back to my parking spot, almost losing my bumper in the process. So I missed another day of work. I used the time to complete the process of shopping for a car. In the evening I pushed/dug my wife's vehicle out of the driveway and purchased the vehicle I'd shopped for online. It was relatively painless as far as buying a vehicle goes, and I am happy to have a vehicle with things the old one was missing, like a radio, a functioning heater, headlights that point in the direction of travel, and an intact undercarriage. The new car has a little less power than the old one and it's an automatic instead of a manual, but I just couldn't justify spending the extra money to get the sportiest version of the car.
Throughout much of the night, someone with a truck and a plow came through our neighborhood and cleared out most of the high ridges of built-up snow and ice that people were getting stuck on. I had almost no trouble getting out of the driveway and out of the neighborhood this morning. I had kept much of the road in front of my house clear throughout the snowstorms, so the plow didn't leave a ridge of snow in front of my driveway, but some of my neighbors had decent bumps that will have to be dug out before they can go anywhere. I am just happy to be free to leave my house without having to dig and push in order to get going. In spite of that, there are still lots of neighborhoods that are still snowed in, and my kids had school cancelled again today. I think their extended holiday break is nearing the month mark now, when you combine the scheduled break with the snow days.
And now on to the trading cards. I went out and found a box of 1999 Skybox WNBA Hoops cards as a bit of a nostalgic box break. When the WNBA was first announced, I was pretty excited to get some cards and follow the league, especially the Houston Comets. Unfortunately I never had much access to actually watch any WNBA games, but I did follow the standings and some of the news until I dropped out of hardcore sports fandom for a spell in 2000. I kept up on some of the bigger news items, like the shuttering of the Comets franchise in 2008 and some of the other goings-on, but that's about it.
I did somehow collect quite a few cards from 1999 WNBA Hoops when the set was released. I don't recall exactly how, though, as this isn't the sort of stuff that would have been readily available in my neck of the woods. Maybe I ordered it in from somewhere or just purchased a set from someone? I don't know. But in cleaning out my garage the other week I found some of my WNBA Hoops cards from back then. I don't have any cards from any other WNBA sets , but I have some from this one. Maybe this one came out just prior to me leaving the hobby. I spent much of 2000 in basic training, so I wouldn't have been keeping up with much of anything when all of the 2000 sets released. Anyway, here is the box lid.
And the pack design, which mirrors the box lid. There is a 110-card base set with a handful of insert sets and a chance at some autographed cards.
Here is the base card design. I don't recall the specifics, but for whatever reason I chose Ticha Penicheiro as one of my PC players back then. That collection never really went anywhere, but it seems like I could put together a nice collection now without spending a million dollars. She is currently the all-time WNBA leader in assists and second all-time in steals. Sue Bird could pass her in assists if she keeps playing, though.
The text on the back of these cards is pretty groan-worthy at times. The blurbs are written in a conversational style, as if the person writing them were talking to the player. But they try to use a cool 'street' style (I guess to draw in the hip-hop crowd?) and it just winds up sounding corny. Penicheiro's card isn't close to being the worst of them.
Here are some of the subsets from the set. There are postseason cards for awards and the playoffs, as well as League Leader cards and checklists. Pretty standard stuff. I don't remember where I wrote down the breakdown of cards in the box, but if I am remembering correctly I completed one base set, came within 7 cards of a second base set, and then had a couple dozen triples and a handful or two of quadruples.
Here are a few more base cards for some of the big names of that era. The Dawn Staley card is another subset, Future Phenomenons.
Building Blocks is the most common insert in the box. I pulled 9 of them, so a complete set plus a double of Tammi Reiss' card.
The Talk of the Town inserts seem to feature players who are role models, or who do things outside of the WNBA for their community. I could be wrong, but that seems to be what the card backs are all about. I pulled 3 cards from the 12-card set from this box.
Finally, I pulled two cards from the ten-card Award Winners set. I didn't pull any Autographics cards from this box, but the odds are against that anyway. I have picked up a handful of additional WNBA boxes and cards recently, so expect to see more of this stuff on the blog over the next couple of months.