Friday, June 26, 2020

Trade with Nomo’s Sushi Platter and another song

First off, thanks for all of the kind comments on my last post. I have never pictured myself as someone with insignt, more as someone who to learn what not to do from, so that was very encouraging to hear people say that. More on the previous post later. 

I am still 3 trades behind in getting caught up after a huge package that Johnny's Trading Spot sent last week, but this post will get me a little closer to getting caught up. 

About 2 months ago, I emailed Michael from Nomo's Sushi Platter after seeing a blogger post about trading with him, and we got a trade started. I sent some cards of Hideo Nomo, Andre Ethier, Mike Piazza, Raul Mondesi, and Matt Kemp, and Micheal sent back a bunch of Tigers and Rays. 

The first pic starts off with a deckle edge Willie Horton and a sunset card of Bill Freehan. Many of the cards helped me get closer to finishing some Tigers sets off. I could've sworn I had the '88 Topps Nokes All-Star, but must've had it autographed and sold it, because it was listed as a need. 
My favorite cards from this page are probably the '92 Topps ones, since I've got both of those autographed and needed new copies for my binders, and the 1993 Stadium Club cards, as the photos for many of them were taken at Joker Marchant Stadium, which I have been to hundreds of times. 
This page has a number of sets that I missed out on in the '90's, like '94 Triple Play and '95 Fleer. The '94 Upper Deck Matt Brunson brings back memories, as I remember pulling his '94 Bowman card that year, and I had hoped to get it signed. I must've missed him playing in Lakeland in the minors, because I probably went to 1 game in '94 and he wasn't there. I didn't stay much after Spring Training games at that point either, so I probably missed getting him there before he retired. 
This page features a number of cards which I had signed at one point, but ended up selling, including the '98 Collector's Choice Catalanotto, the 99 Topps Robert Fick and Justin Thompson, and the '02 Fleer Matt Anderson. 
Some of my favorites on this page include the '02 Upper Deck Victory Wil Ledesma, the '07 Topps Mike Rabelo (one of 2 Tigers cards Mike got in that set), the Al Kaline '08 Donruss Thread parallel, the Ultimate Collection Fu Te Ni (the first card of Ultimate Collection I have ever owned), and the Cut to the Chase die-cut Fielder insert. 
This page finished off the Tigers and gets to the Rays portion. Does anyone remember when Upper Deck PowerDeck came out? I remember a few people thinking that CD's were the future of baseball cards. I think the set only lasted 2 years, and here we are now with online on-demand sets that Topps can just print out enough of to cover the orders, and all of the high-end stuff that doesn't do team players any favors, and did I mention the hundreds of parallels to everything? I think the CD's would've been a better way to go, don't you?
Most of the Rays were new-to-me. I have never been a Fleer guy, so just about any time someone sends me Fleer, I need it. Nothing bad about Fleer, I've just always been a Topps guy, and I just like their designs better. 
This one finished off the Rays, with just about all cards being ones that I needed. The Total Rob Bell brought back some good memories. I saw Rob at a Rays game one year before a game. I had the Silver version of that card, and Rob came over to sign, and he signed his '98 Bowman card for me, and I asked him if he had the silver Total card. He said no, so I gave it to him, and he proceeded to put it in his back pocket, and then sat down in the dugout. It made me cringe to see him sit on the card and probably bend it. I love the Tropicana Field photo, as I can imagine myself walking around the park. There is a little river that runs along about half of the park. I usually enter the park around the CF gate, and the river is just to the left of that. The parking lot is along the LF side of the park, with a railroad track running along the side of it. I hope we can get back to a game in 2021. 
Here are the cards for my Favorite Player Collection. I love the Upper Deck Vintage card of Carl Everett. I remember a guy on an autograph messageboard had got the Tigers version of that card signed by everyone except for Rich Becker (who was a pretty decent signer ttm, at least for me), and he was freaking out about sending to Becker, wanting to send him a certified letter first explaining that he would be sending the card to him to finish, and contemplating getting insurance and the whole 9 yards. I understand being worried, but it kind of seemed like he was going overboard. Never found out if he sent it or not. I love the '91 Stadium Club Fielder/Canseco. The Didi is a minor league issue. 
The Huff's are either new ones or ones that will fill in holes in my Rays binders. I appreciate the time Michael took to go through my Want List and how he hit many areas of my collection. The Mark Lowe and Brandon Morrow cards are both autographed. I'm stoked about the Lowe, because he only has 1 certified autograph card, and the lone copy on COMC is overpriced in my opinion. Not many people I've traded with have taken the time to send highlight cards, but Michael fond a few to add, and I'm excited to add them to my Highlights binder. He also found some Topps Gold cards for that project and a card of Jason Campbell, who was Auburn's QB shortly before I lived in Montgomery, Alabama and really started following them.
Thanks to Michael for the awesome trade.

So the last post that I made featured a video of an original song that I wrote, along with the lyrics and a chord sheet. I still am not sure if the video worked for everyone, so I tried going the YouTube route. I had made a video on how I make customs and put it on YouTube, so I took the 2 song videos I made and posted them to YouTube, so if you can't view them on my blog, you can perhaps view them there.

The first song was called 'Plan B', and here are the videos and lyrics/chord sheet.
Here is the link to the YouTube video if it doesn't work.

The other song I recorded was an original song I wrote called "I am your Peace". In around 2002, I had written a bunch of what I now think are just crappy songs. I didn't really know much about chord progressions and music theory back then, but I did write the majority of this song back then. Sometime during that period, I was talking with my friend Jason, who is an excellent piano player and drummer. I told him (naively) that I thought I had run out of topics to write songs about. He asked me if I had ever written one about peace. I thought about it, and then had a topic for my next song. Jason and I were in a band with some people in our youth group. We mostly just did the worship songs for the services, but we got together when we could, and had tried to perform some original songs. Our friend Joe, who played guitar and sang lead vocals in the band had written some music for a song on guitar with a D, A/C#, Bm, G main progression, and a Em, G, D, A secondary progression. Nothing really came of Joe's song, but while playing the progressions a few times with him, I came up with a sweet piano part to it. I never told Joe, but I took the piano riff I came up with to the progression he had, and used it in 'I am your Peace'. While living in Montgomery, Alabama, I came up with the main melody of the solo part on a guitar, actually. I have performed the song a few times over the years, once in 2004 or so at a youth worship service at our church, once while getting to open for a band called Thalon in 2007, once at a talent show for our church's college group, and a few times at a church that a co-worker went to for their Friday night music service in 2010. 
The song lyrically is about all of the struggles we go through and how the person saying 'I am you peace' in the song will always be there. That person can be different things to different people, whether it be God, a significant other/spouse, a good friend, or a close relative. I hope, like in the last song I posted, that it is a message that can be held on to during these crazy times in the world. 

Here is (hopefully) the video of that one, as well as the Lyrics/chorcds.

Here is a link to the YouTube video if the one posted here doesn't work.

I wanted to mention that I have a few more 'Christian' songs that I have written that I could record and post if anyone is interested. If nobody is, I don't really see the point in wasting anyone's time, so if I get enough interest, I'll do it. If you would enjoy hearing any of these other songs, please comment, and if I could also get a few people to comment if these videos are actually working. I'm still not sure if the one I posted previously ever did.

I am still working on the Sunset Card post, and have the 1951 to 1978 Topps sets finished. There is a lot of research involved (identifying who to list for each year, seeing if Topps gave them a true sunset card and if so, identifying the card number, and finally, if they don't have a true sunset card, seeing if a custom card has been made of them (thanks to When Topps had Balls, 90% of guys in the '70's do), but I think all of the research will be worth it in the end, and it could end up being a valuable list for collectors.
Thanks for checking out my latest post.

Friday, June 19, 2020

An original song...

First off, I have 2 trades I haven't done posts for, and I apologize for letting them get pushed back so far.
I really hope this post doesn't get to political and doesn't get to preachy, and I apologize if it does.
I guess I have to start it off from the very early part of my life. I come from a family of 6. I have 3 younger sisters who are now 35, and 33 (twins), while I just turned 37 a few days ago. We all grew up pretty sheltered and kind of raised in church, which there is nothing wrong with, I think it just kind of hid me from a lot of stuff going on in the world. I was home-schooled by my mom from kindergarden to 2nd grade, was in a pretty strict private school from 3rd through 5th, home-schooled again from 6th through 10th, and put in public school in 11th and 12. My mom tried, but with 4 of us to teach, much of the schooling was either put on us to keep up with the reading or worksheets (which we did 75% of the time), and some of the subjects got pushed to the back burner. She listened to Rush Limbaugh every afternoon, which I don't think is wrong, but perhaps it just gave us only one side of the equation much of the time.
I got pretty involved in youth group during middle school. There was a girl in the group who seemed different than the rest. She read her Bible consistantly, and had been on a few mission trips, and just seemed like she had something that me and many kids in the group wanted. I decided to start reading my Bible, and over the next few years, I came to realize that God loved me enough to send His Son down to earth to live a life without sinning and falling short of the mark, and pay the penalty for all of the wrong things I had ever done, and offer me the gift of eternal life. You may or may not believe in any of this or may not care, and that's ok. It's just part of my story. I accepted God's gift, and continued to get in the Bible and do what I thought was right. This is kind of where everything gets confusing. Growing up in the southern baptist church I was in, I think many of the things they taught seemed right in themselves, but when you actually get down to it, they didn't actually line up with what the Bible taught. Many people in the church were judgemental of many different groups of people. We were kind of taught that us people in the church were in the right and everyone else was wrong and needed to be shown that.
I went to college a few years later, and I just kept acting the way the church taught me to, and probably alienating a bunch of people. One of our suitemates was a little strange, and rumor had it he was a satanist. Instead of trying to make him feel welcome, I just judged him and didn't try to accept him. One day he was talking about an Andy Warhol painting, and I just lit into him, telling him how stupid Andy was and how lame his painting was. When I walked back to my room, my roommate JD just commented 'You'll never reach him that way'. It kind of hit me that I lost my perspective of what was right.
I hate to admit it, but in spite of what I claimed I believed, I have been racist to many different groups. I just never took the time to give other people a chance and try to relate to them and give them a chance or get to know their story of why they are like they are. While my upbringing and the church I went to kind of molded me, I was ultimately the person responsible for the choices I made.
Over the years, a few things have made me see that I was wrong for how I acted. I have always opposed illegal immigrants coming to the US. I reasoned that all they do is steal money and resources from people who are born here and work for a living. While some do, not all people do, and they shouldn't be judged for the actions of a small group.
My wife Karen is the most loving and accepting person I know. She accepted and loved me for crying out loud. She has been on me for the way I have acted, but has always been loving about it, and has made me question why I believe what I do. In the process of dating her, she was living in the house of a family, the Hoffmans. Fred & Mary Hoffman had 5 or 6 rooms in their house, and alwasy rented them out to young people at their church. They have been on many mission trips to Cuba, Puerto Rico, and Nicaragua. While on one of the trips, they met a fellow named Rodolfo. Where Rodolfo is from, the political tensions are very high, and the lines are pretty set. Rodolfo is a doctor, and while offering medical help to a member of a different party that his family was affiliated with, he got in trouble with the political officials, and his life became in danger. He fled to the US, and Fred & Mary helped him out, trying to get himi political assylum, paying for his legal fees, and lettting him live with them. I feel sorry for Rodolfo. He is one of the good people who can't come to the US legally because the country he is fleeing won't let him. If he comes illegally, the establishment in the US will ship him back. Kind of a catch 22 that makes me think that maybe its the system that needs to be changed and it's ok if people try to come to the US if where they live now aren't safe.
I am ashamed to admit, but I have been racist in the past. I just haven't given African American people the benefit of the doubt, whether it be a story about a person getting arrested, or shot by the police, or killed. That was wrong. Why shouldn't I give anyone the benefit of the doubt. Many of these stories that have came out about African Americans being harassed by the police are unthinkable. The fact that parents have to give their children 'the talk' about how police are going to pull them over for no reason at all and that there isn't much that they can do about it is just alarming and sad. What can I do to change things? Do I try to talk to my African American co-workers and friends and ask them for advice? Do I post things online? Do I just try to be more accepting and teach my child that as well? I wish I knew the answer.
While trying to be a good 'Christian' in college, I wrote a original song with my brother-in-law that I called 'Plan B'. The song basically questioned why people came to church and left unchanged. I was judging other people in that song, as well as others that I've written, and the more I grow older, the more I find that I'm just writing the songs about myself.
I think the basic idea of the song has merit, and I've changed a number of the lyrics recently in order to kind of reflect what is going on in the world now. Here is where I'm going to try to post a video of me performing it, and below it will be the lyrics and hopefully a chord sheet. I have no idea of how the quality of this video will be, I took it with my phone and uploaded it to blogger from my phone, and it's just my tired voice and piano with no click track or anything.

Words by: Jeremy DeJong & JT Bush
Music by: Jeremy DeJong

He goes there every Sunday as if to make an appearance.
He listend to the message, but rarely does he hear it.
He leaves the church as if his obligation is done.
Now it's back to whatever, whatever he calls 'fun'.

We say we are different, but we lock our minds in a jar.
Instead of reaching out to the world, we stay right where we are.
We judge too many people, instead of looking at ourselves.
We scare away the broken, and don't care if they ever get well.

The truth is preached, but seldom does it get through
and all of the Christians wonder what to do.

It's about time to put our words into action and show love instead of hate.
It will change their reaction if we could only relate.
Talk is cheap, let's back it up. There's a world that needs some love (2X)

Today nobody is equal. Cheap talk won't be enough.
Forget about appearance, and start showing everyone love.


Here is the chord sheet. I hope you can read it. Basically B minor, A, G 3 times, then a D and A for the verses, Bm, G, D, A for the pre-chorus, chorus, and intro/outro with an F# thrown in the solo part.

I hope that this song can be one that you relate to, whether from being tired of being a Christian that isn't loving everyone, or whether you don't even believe in anything but still hope for a world where everyone is loved and accepted. Please let me know if the song affected you in any positive way.

I truly hope that the relationship with all types of people can improve in the future, and I hope to be part of that change and that I can start showing more love to people. Thanks for putting up with my singing and playing. I play alot better when I am not singing, and when I'm in a band setting. Maybe I'll get a recording of that up sometime.

In my next post, I hope to highlight one of the trades I have yet to post, and I also might put a video of another orignial song, one of my oldest and probably one of my best ones, one which I have performed about a dozen times over the years.

Thanks for checking out my latest post.

Friday, June 12, 2020

Trade with Wax Pack Wonder

A few weeks ago, I completed a trade with Jeff from Wax Pack Wonders. I sent him some Ryne Sandberg's, Kerry Wood's, Mark Grace's, and Cubs & Twins cards. While not a Twins fan, Jeff donates a binder of Twins for an auction at his church every year, which is usually scooped up pretty quick since he is located in Minnesota. Good to know, as I am running low on good Cub cards and I still have some good Twins to spare. 

Jeff hooked me up with a ton of Tigers and Rays. 

The first page helps me with some older Topps Tigers sets, mainly 1979 and 1980.
I love the first row of cards on this page, as I can recognize on the Cowens, Hebner, and Petry Fleer card that the pictures were taken at Joker Marchant Stadium in Lakeland, Florida, where the Tigers train every spring. I've been to over 100 games at the ballpark, and if not for the task of taking so many cards out of Tigers sets I am close to completing, I might just have a Marchant Stadium binder. 
This page gets me closer to finishing the '84 Topps set, and also shows some harder-to-find sets, such as 1986 Leaf. 
Somehow, I was missing Lance Parrish's 1987 Topps All-Star. One of the few 1987 Topps card I have never seen in my life. I once had the '88 Topps Tigers leaders card signed by both Trammell and Gibson, but it was sold, and now I have it back. The '90 Donruss Best cards are cool, as I've rarely seen those cards show up in trades. I've been collecting since 1988, and although I've never actively browesed COMC or eBay for them, the only time I've ever seen Donruss Best cards in person were when my LCS in Lakeland had a few '89 packs, and when I seen a few packs at a Winn Dixie in the early '90's. The last card on the page is a highlight for me, a card of Dennis McNamara, a Lakeland Tiger. I may have seen him play that year, and I have another Lakeland card of him, I believe from the previous year. 
The next page has a few sets that I don't have many cards from, 1992 Topps Kids, and 1993 Flair. I am now close to having the Tigers set for '93 Flair thanks to some trades. The '93 Topps Trammell and Whitaker cards are ones I've drooled over since 1993 when they came out, and I've never pulled them from packs or got them in trades. Now I can cross them off of my lists.
The final page features a few cards I have got signed but sold ('94 Topps Skeeter Barnes, 1996 Topps Brandon Reed, 2001 Topps Wendell Magee, and 2001 Heritage Higginson), a few cards I have always wanted a card the set they were in ('95 Donruss Diamond Kingsand  '97 Elite), and some newer cards I don't have (basically the whole bottom row). 
The final photo are the last of the Tigers, the Rays, and the guys in my Favorite Player binder. All of the Rays were new to me, and I am digging the Fielders, especially the 1990 Donruss Best, the '91 Upper Deck 51st HR one, and the Fleer insert. 
Thanks, Jeff, for the awesome trade!

That gets me 1 trade closer to finishing posting all of my recent trades and getting caught up. Only 2 more to go.

Thanks for checking out my latest post.

Thursday, June 11, 2020

Cards from Cards on Cards and a little update

Recently, Kerry from Cards on Cards offered to bust a ton of packs of a Topps of the Class set and to let readers sign up for a team, and offered to mail any card(s) of that team that he pulled. Well, I signed up for the Rays. Although Kerry didn't pull any of the Blake Snell card in the set, he graciously sent some cards for me that fit my collection. (Apologies if I didn't include all of them, I accidentally put them in my Rays/Tigers/Favorite Player boxes before taking pictures, and I had to take them out again, and I may have missed 1 or 2). 

The Scherzer will go with his cards in my Favorite Player binder, while the Cabrera will go in my Tigers binder, and the Longo and Snell cards will go in the Rays one.

Thanks, Kerry, for sending me some cards and for doing the cool break. I'll be keeping my eye out for some Cardinals for you.

I am currently 2-3 posts behind in catching up on some trades I've made. I think the main reason behind that is that I was trying to update both my Rays and Tigers Want List pages. The good news is that they are both completely up to date. I am working on updating pages of my Favorite Players, and after that, just do a few minor changes to the Want List page, and I should have all of my cards catalogued and have made it easier to find what I have and need.

I also am working on a post listing every Sunset card (both in Topps sets, and ones that would be customs). So far, I have listed every one of major players/fan favorites from every set from 1951 to 1964. That will be my next project after the Favorite Player pages are updated.

My birthday is on Sunday, and my wife and I are going to go to St. Augustine on Saturday night and get a hotel and eat dinner with my youngest sister and her husband and leave them and see where the night takes us. Sunday morning, I plan on sleeping in until 11 and then coming back home. 11 doesn't sound all that late, but I get up at 4:15 AM every morning, and I could really use a day to sleep in without my son waking my up at 6 or 7, lol.

My work is having a bogo cookie sale, and it started today. Not looking forward to that, number one, because it is a ton of extra work, and two, because I fear at least 3 of the remaning days of the sale I am going to have to be up at 2AM and at work at 3 because one of our associates is going to be at a new store opening. What I wouldn't give for a time machine to make it be Saturday night.

Now that the Want List and Player Pages are almost finished, I might try something new. I have talked before about how I have written some songs, and I've tossed the idea around of recording myself singing and playing one. One of these days, I think I'll video it from my phone, and post the lyrics, and perhaps a chord sheet, along with the video. Don't expect anything studio-quality or anything that sounds like Steve Perry, but I feel the song I am thinking of doing would be well recieved for the lyrics, especially with things the way they are in the world right now.

I don't know how many of you are paying attention to the MLB Draft, but I was happy to see the Tigers select Spencer Torkelson with the #1 overall pick. I think it's time the Tigers added a decent hitter to their crop of young arms. It gives me hope that in the next 5 years, they can maybe have a rotation featuring Casey Mize, Matt Manning, and maybe Joey Wentz or another youngster, and have a lineup featuring Jeimer Candelario, Christin Stewart, Parker Meadows, Riley Greene, Jake Rogers/Grayson Greiner, and Torkelson, along with hopefully a few big-name free agent signings. What I wouldn't give to see a Tigers (and Rays) championship in my lifetime. Before I go, here is a 2020 Topps custom of Torkelson I made today.

Thanks for checking out my latest post.