Tuesday, March 04, 2008

A Legend on Cardboard

As you probably already know, Brett Favre announced his retirement today. I'll admit to being a little saddened by the news. Was he really leaving? But I'm an adult, so after the initial shock wore off, I thought less about myself and more about the Packers future. Just how the hell will be Packers do anything next year with Aaron Rodgers under center? That's when Favre's retirement hit me. This could be a loss the Packers feel for years.

Then the whole retirement issue hit even closer to home: I didn't have nearly enough Favre cards in my collection. Not three minutes after hearing the news, and I was wondering if anyone would notice if I ran home and checked eBay before prices really go through the roof.

Naturally I calmed myself down and didn't skip the rest of the day at work to surf for Favre cards (of course, if they'd just let me access eBay at work it would be so much easier for all of us). But even as I spent the day reflecting on the great quarterback's career and how fortunate I was to see several of his games, not to mention how fortunate I was just to watch the entire Favre era from beginning to end, I also spent some time considering my collection, which as cool as I think it might be, just happens to be way too thin on Favre cards.

Why is that? How could a Packers fan who's been collecting cards consistently for nearly six years not have enough Favre cards. Well, see, at the beginning of the 2007 season, I sold off all of my Favre cards, at least those that weren't produced by Topps and SP Authentic, the two sets I collect year in and year out. I'll admit that even at the time, it felt funny letting them go, but I knew that it was for the greater good of the collection. It wasn't so much that I was getting rid of Favre cards, it was more about adding to my Packers collection.

I'm a team collector. I want every Packers card from Topps and SP Authentic that I can get my hands on, so it was somewhat liberating to sell those cards that didn't fit the specific requirements I had set for my collection, even if they were "rare" or had a piece of a Favre game-used jersey.

Now, however, I wonder if that's true. Sure, I love the fact that I have every 2007 Topps Chrome Packers card, but are 5 Brandon Jacksons and 8 David Clowneys really worth even one Favre jersey card?

At the time, definitely. The thrill of the hunt had me by the balls, and being the first to show off the rainbow set was kinda cool. But now that I look back and the excitement of those stupid colors has worn off, I think I would rather have a handful of Favre cards.

Sure, my collection is nice, tight, and focused now. And not many people have the entire rainbow of 2007 Bowman Chrome Packers cards (not even me, apparently...why the hell did I never finish that set?). But now the best Favre cards I have are a graded 1991 Topps and a handful of his SPA gold cards numbered to 25. Not all that exciting. Not when you consider that Favre is the greatest QB to wear the green and gold.

So even as I type this, I search eBay for Favre cards to buy. The analyzer in me is screaming for me to at least first buy those expensive Favre autographs that are on my list, so that way I'm at least sticking with the standards I've set for my collection. But those are costly and hard to find, so I'm not sure if that will satiate my desire to do something in Favre's honor right here, right now.

Oh, I got it. I can start another collection. Yeah, that sounds about right. It's the least I can do to pay tribute to Favre for all the excitement he's given this Packers fan.

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