I’ve collected cards on and off since 1976 or ’77 and in all of that time I’ve never had a shiny one. There have been shiny stickers, I suppose. I don’t think those really count.
This absence of shininess was more happenstance than anything. I gave up on pack-busting a number of years ago because for modern sets, it’s so much more efficient to buy the thing outright and avoid the hassle. It’s significantly cheaper, too, leaving more money in the budget for vintage. When you buy a set, though, it rarely comes with the funky inserts and vintage cards simply don’t have them.
I’ve picked up the odd patch or autographed card and never really found them that rewarding. So when I saw people’s scans of various shiny things and they didn’t appear to be particularly shiny or interesting, I filed them under “disappointing inserts” and never thought to pick one up.
This is the benefit, though, of trading – particularly the sort of trading that isn’t so much about wantlists as it is about sending random piles of stuff your fellow trader might find interesting. This is what went on over the last month or so with Shane over at Shoebox Legends. I sent off some old OPC Red Sox and threw in some last-minute hockey when I saw he was collecting stuff I had. In response, I got this mammoth bubble mailer. When I opened it, the first thing I saw was this:
My response – “Coooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooool.”
Of course, now I have to acknowledge what everyone else has pointed out a million times already. It is impossible to scan these things. In person, it’s polished like a mirror and glows with a whole kaleidoscope of colours that shimmer and shift and impart an actual sense of depth to the image (presumably this is where the term “refractor” comes from). The fact that I opened it such that it caught a ray of afternoon sun only helped it along.
This thing is so neat I can even forgive the fact that it’s Alex Rios. 🙂 (Note: I actually quite liked Rios at the time.)
So now, 35 years in, I’m finally a member of the shiny crowd. Happy to be here.
Of course, there were three other very cool things attached to the Rios along with three other bundles full of neat goodies, and I’ll talk about each of them in their turn, but I want this one to stand on it’s own. It’s that neat (not that anyone can tell from the scan).
Thanks Shane! My next package is taking shape in my lumbering, glacial sort of way. 🙂