Monday, July 6, 2015

Movie Review : Terminator Genisys

Are you ready for round five from the Terminator franchise? Even if you are not I am as I have always loved this series even though the last one with Christian Bale in the lead left me wanting. I wanted to like it but I just couldn't make myself.

Arnold is back in his classic leather jacket looking old but ready to still kick some ass. I wanted to watch this chapter with minimal knowledge of what is going on in it even though I have seen multiple previews I am still pretty unaware of most of the story line and want to keep it that way. With lesser expectations I hope to really enjoy this movie as I have already heard people stating it's not that strong. I shall see for myself.

Highlights :

  • Arnold is back and this time around he has brought some new jokes. He really is the best part of the film. 
  • Every time a new Terminator movie comes out it seems that the special effects get better and this one is no different. 
  • Unlike the last chapter this one doesn't forget the 1st entries in the franchise existed. Nice to see the nods.
Low Lights :

  • Emilia Clarke as Sara Conner. I love Emilia on Game of Thrones but her smaller frame and her "traditional" female frame (curves) makes it hard to believe her as a bad ass ready to help save the world.
  • While I love time travel it can make your head hurt and this one is no different. Explanations while thorough still leave and make holes in theories.
  • Movie is more of a re imagining of the 1st film and not really one that stands on its own merit which can be good and bad but in this case it seemed to hinder it more than help. 

Final Thoughts :

I so love me some Terminator movies and in general time travelling movies and I was hoping this latest entry would jump start the franchise again. I came away thinking it could go either way.

Other than Arnold I think all the parts were miscast. Emilia doesn't make me think world saver and Reese is more eye candy for the ladies than anything else. While time travel on the surface does not makes sense (think about it, the present can't happen unless the future happens but the future only exists because the present happened, brain cramp) I still enjoy watching movies about it and this one was no different. Arnold brings minimal dialogue to the film but has the most impact of all the characters. If this franchise is to move forward it is going to have to figure how to make a decent movie minus the original Terminator at some point. Seeing John Conner as something he wasn't in the 1st four films was nice to see and made this movie all around better.

In the end even if you are a die hard Terminator movie fan you might be turned off by the different direction they decided to go with here. I personally enjoyed it as I didn't find the plot holes too offensive as some are born out of typical time travel loop holes. When Arnold finally says good bye to this franchise I fear that it will lights out for it as I don't think the creators can make a great film with him in it so how will they make a good film without him?

Final Grade : B

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Card of the Day - 2015 Topps Museum : Sandy Koufax Base Blue Parallel (18/99)

My personal deadline for this year's Topps Museum issue is nearing and with April 29th (Bowman's release date) just a couple days away (at the time of post write up) I am still trying to securing all my Museum needs. One more has been acquired with Koufax now in hand.

Even though he hasn't thrown off a MLB mound in almost 4 decades Sandy still commands some decent coin when it comes to his cards especially autographs and parallels. I had lost out on a few of these as it's book value finally came out which pegged it at $20. Love me some Koufax but that amount is too high in my eyes. eBay sales have been anywhere between $7-10 so that was going to be my ballpark with the hope of me acquiring one at the lower end of the spectrum,

I happened to be on the road when this card's auction was due to end so I had to put my bid in earlier than planned but thankfully when the auction ended my bid held up. At the very last second someone put their own bid in that pushed the end total to my max but not over. One more Museum off the checklist with a few biggies left.

18 of 99

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Sunday, July 5, 2015

Card of the Day - 2007 Bowman Chrome : Chris Withrow Base Autograph Refractor Parallel (373/500) BGS Graded Gem Mint 9.5

Even though Chris is a Dodger (edit: this was written up before he was traded to the Braves) and I can't get enough autographs of Dodgers why would I go out of my way and acquire the same exact card of Chris if I already have one considering he is not the biggest of names on the team? For two simple reasons, one I can't resist BGS gem mints and two I am now including the non graded one in my #kershawwalletcard contest. I am paying it forward to you, the readers.

While I was content with my Bowman Chrome rainbow collection of Withrow autographs that includes a raw refractor like this one I am always looking into ways to "improve" my collection, During a general search for Dodger autographs I came across this gem with a measly starting asking price of just $5. Whaaaa? Certified gems for that price can't be passed up and then me being able to take the one in my collection to contest out made it the perfect auction to win.

Final day of the auction came and what a surprise there was not a single bid on it yet. In Los Angeles Withrow is appreciated and valued but outside our bubble he is basically an unknown. At the end of the auction there ended up being two bids but mine was still the high one at pennies over $6. Would do that deal any day of the week.

So that adds another gem mint autograph to my ever growing graded card collection and officially puts Withrow into my contest. Everybody wins.

373 / 500

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Saturday, July 4, 2015

Card of the Day - 2015 Topps Museum : Yasiel Puig Base Blue Parallel (23/99)

Getting close.
Still trying to get all these blue parallels by April 29th (Bowman release date) and put this set behind me.

I picked up the Gonzalez blue for 99 cents as the card books for $8. A great deal indeed and surprisingly I was the only one to bid on it. A day later this Puig's eBay auction was due to end and the starting bid was 99 cents as well. Unlike the Adrian someone had already put a bid on it but with a hour left it was still at 99 cents. The card books for $15 and I expected it to go anywhere from $6-9 based on other auctions. Guess people once again were asleep (though it was the afternoon when this ended) or didn't care for this card. I put my bid in with a few seconds left which raised the price to a mere $1.25. Five quarters for a limited (99) card? Yes and more please.

Now with this card in hand I have 4 more to acquire, Joc, Koufax, Jackie and Trout. Can I do it? Here's to hoping so.


Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Friday, July 3, 2015

Card of the Day - 2014 Topps Five Star : Paul O'Neill Base Autograph (332/399)

Watching MLB network does wonders for your collection if not your wallet as I was watching a special on the 1990's Nasty Boys aka Cincinnati Reds which had many famous names on team including one Paul O'Neill.

I knew of Paul from his days with the Yankees but I had forgotten that he played with the Reds and as I watched the show I realized I never did get around to acquiring his autograph when his name popped into my head months ago. Time to fix that little mistake. I did not expect a high demand or price tag for his autograph and didn't care if the card showed him in a Reds or Yankees uniform. Only thing that matter that it was an on card signature.

Back to my go to brand, Five Star, to see what was available and I found this copy on the bay on a BIN auction with best offer. Let's see how much I can squeeze the seller for. He was asking $15 for it so I sent him a nice little offer or $8 to test the waters. Surprise, surprise he took the offer with no counter. Well that was easy. Card arrived promptly and in great condition. Watching TV doesn't just "dumb" you down it also lightens your wallet. Ha Ha


Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Thursday, July 2, 2015

7.2.15 Dodger Penguin #walletcard Contest Update and Standings

Contest just started but I wanted to give an update plus how future updates will come about.

I will post the pictures that were used in the contest here in a "timely" manner and show who earned the point or points for said picture so there is no discrepancy on the winner. IF for some reason there is and you think you have a claim to a point that was assigned to someone else please bring it up to my attention and I will look into the matter. At the bottom of this post will be the continuously updated standings.

Obviously this post is pretty bare for now but by the end of October it will be full of pictures. Once again, good luck to all and have fun.

1.8.15 :

5 points earned by Jesse for his blog post as seen HERE
5 points awards to Caitlin for her blog post as seen HERE
Caitlin's points have been forfeited due to deceiving and fraud

1.9.15 :

5 points earned by The Dutch Card Guy for his blog post as seen HERE

1.20.15 :

5 points earned by Greg for his blog post as seen HERE


5 points earned by Alex for his blog post as seen HERE


1 point awarded to Alex
1 point awarded to Jesse
1 point awarded to Derek

Couple days ago I was trying to win a pair of glasses for my wife and these 3 good friends/supporters tried to help out by liking my FB post and even though I didn't win (as I stated I would award a point to each person that helped out if I won) I am going to award a point anyways. Derek stated just give his point to Jesse (which I did) but I still think he deserves one so he gets one anyways. Thank you again guys.

2 points awarded to Aus

When I do my post in a couple weeks showing off the autographs that will be in the contest there will be another added to the pile. A total of 8 now. Aus picked up an autograph at Dodger Fanfest but didn't want it so he donated it to the contest so I have given him an extra 2 points for his generosity. No I am not playing favorites, if you want to do the same I will award you the same amount.


2 points awarded to Luis

Going forward and until the end of the contest I will award 2 points to anyone that does a trade with me whether it was initiated by me or you. An extra little bonus for everyone. I like do trades so please contact me if you see anything you like in my trade bait or collection and have something you think I might like or need.


I had forgotten to hand out the 2 points each trade I have done since February so this is just me catching up. Sorry about that everyone.

2 points awarded to Tony L. for our trade from March 8
2 points awarded to Gabriel for our trade from March 24
2 points awarded to Nolan for our trade from March 31
2 points awarded to Frankie for our trade from May 8
2 points awarded to Gavino for our trade from June 18
2 points awarded to Alex for our trade from June 23


2 points awarded to Frankie for our trade from "today"

Kershaw and I at Del Taco
1 point awarded to Jesse

Kershaw and I at 3rd St. Promenade 
1 point awarded to Alex

Kershaw and I at Staples Center taking in the Devils vs. the Kings
Like the Kershaw the Kings were not focused
2 points awarded to Jesse

Kershaw and I at Howard Hughes to take in American Sniper
2 points awarded to Jesse

Spider-Man's clone Ben Reilly dies in this issue
1 point awarded to Aus 

1st Dodger Dog of the year at the Stadium Club Restaurant at Dodger Stadium
1 point awarded to Aus

Alex answered correctly with Alex. Appropriate I would say.
1 point awarded to Alex

Keith answered correctly with the Cubs winning the World Series according to Sporting News.
Yeah, that's not happening.
Up to six people with earned points. Everyone as of now still guaranteed an autograph

JBAutgraphs correctly answered that it was Barry Melrose Legends night at Staples yesterday.
1 point awarded to him and we are up to 8 people.
Everyone still guaranteed an autograph

Alex answered correctly with 24 Hour Fitness.
1 point added to his total.

Dodgers Play Ball from IG answered correctly with General Patton's Museum
1 point and another new entry into the contest

Jesse answered correctly with Chase Field and also answered the bonus question of what restaurant I was eating at.
2 points added to his total.

Alex answered correctly with "Fishbone".
Wife and I saw them in Redondo Beach and that concert ended at 1 in the morning on 2.28
We then traveled to the RWB in Coachella and saw them again at 7 in the evening.
Headliner and opening act in the same day.

Bernardo aka T3XASK1N6 on IG correctly answered with The Kite Festival at Redondo Beach
Lots of great kites.
Another new player in the contest.

Yet another newcomer to the contest, Al Kawamoto, correctly answered Robopocolypse.

Austin chips away with a one point for guessing correctly "King's Hawaiian"

Austin earns two more points for the right city location answer . . .
. . . but Jesse earned two points to offset that by guessing the right place.

Keith answered correctly with Combine City in Canyon Texas and earned 1 point.

Jesse earns another point with the correct answer of "The Prohibition" in San Diego

Austin earns yet another point in his quest for 1st with "Churros Caliente"
Great sweets if you've never been.

One of the rare times that the correct answer wasn't given right away.
After over an hour, Austin finally correctly guesses section 124

Austin earns the point with the correct answer of "Lost Highway" festival
Austin earns another point along with Jesse to the fact that since the wife and I 
were drinking and having fun we were suckered into laughing at their
back and forth online. Makes us laugh and you might earn points. Ha Ha.

Jesse "guesses" right with section 306 with the help of the internet.
Mr. Nocal calling out us Socal for not knowing our seat locations.
Challenge accepted.

This post sat on the blog for 9 days before anyone saw it or cared to try for the point.
Alex grabbed the point with a "correct" answer of both fought in World War II
Not really what I was looking for but I was too vague in my post so his answer is good.
I was looking for "they both were in the Weapon Plus program"

Jesse strikes again as he correctly guesses my cat's name, Jade
He widens his lead with another point earned.

Standings :

18 Points for Jesse
13 Points for Alex
11 Points for Austin
5 Points for Greg
5 Points for The Dutch Card Guy
4 Points for Frankie
2 Points for Gabriel
2 Points for Gavino
2 Points for Keith
2 Points for Luis
2 Points for Nolan
2 Points for Tony L.
1 Point for Al Kawamoto
1 Point for Bernardo
1 Point for Derek
1 Point for Dodgers Play Ball
1 Point for JBAutographs

Trade with Fellow Blogger : Frankie of My Life in the Sports Card Hobby

Another successful trade with Frankie which was born from a failed one nets me the return of a favorite and an acquisition of a top prospect plus some bonus cards.

Frankie is the 3rd separate blogger to send me a trade package with their own business card. I really am missing the boat on this. I need to look into doing up some Penguin cards.

Frankie as always send some extra cards in the trade package and this time was no different as he sent me a nice handful. Won't show them all but here are a couple of my favorites.

A Jose Bautista manufactured relic card from Topps. Frankie was nice enough to throw in an autograph of him from our last trade and now I have yet another Jose card to pare it up with.

A Mr. Hu autograph from a way back. I forgot I never had an autograph of his as I was never in search for one. Still not a fan of sticker autographs but being as this is the only one of Hu I have I welcome it into the fold.

Now onto the main 2 cards that this trade was about.

Frankie originally had a 2015 Topps Finest card of Kris Bryant that he pulled in a pack and I wanted that and was trying to work a trade focused around it but we couldn't come to an agreement but Frankie was still interested in my/his old Strata Gwynn card that he traded to me last year. I wanted to have a Gwynn autograph though still in my collection so what did we do? Why I had him trade back my/his Gwynn that I traded him for the Strata. Ha Ha.

Mr. Padre

.5 from gem mint

I think Frankie and I are happier with the Gwynns going back to their original homes. He loves his Strata and I knew for a fact that it would not be gradable by BGS (which I wanted to do) due to it being too thick and I like the fact that this one is already graded by BGS so I can file it away with all the rest of my graded cards. With it back in hand though when Beckett comes back out in October I will be trying to get a bump on this to get a gold banner. You never know.

Along with Mr. Gwynn I will be adding another card to "hope I can get a bump to a gem mint grade" pile which was the other big card of this trade :

also only .5 from gem mint

I have wanted an autograph of Buxton for some time now but the right opportunity hadn't presented itself to me that is until now. Frankie recently received this back from Beckett and even though it is "only" a 9 it's still a great card and I am lucky to finally call it my own. I am hoping lady luck will be on my side when I submit both of these for a re grade.

Another successful completed trade with Frankie is in the books. Thank you again and looking forward to the next one.

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Card of the Day - 2014 Topps Five Star : Reggie Jackson Base Autograph (24/50)

Another long pursuit to reacquire an autograph for the collection has finally come to a finish with the acquisition of this 1978 Dodger tormentor, one Reggie Jackson.

Even though Reggie was a thorn in the Dodger's side for years I wanted to have his autograph in my collection and even though he played for multiple teams during his career the only uniform for me to have him in was the Yankees. Hate the team but respect the history.

The Five Star brand seemed to have the most cards to chose from when it came to Reggie's autograph but like always I kept losing out on eBay auctions. What made it even "funnier" was that I wasn't just losing out on the 2014 issue but the 2013 one as well. Two different years with the same result each time. Most losses were due to losing out on traditional auctions as the BIN auctions had too high of a starting asking price to play the negotiating game with them. Finally though a seller had this one up with a reasonable price and a best offer option. Sent him a much lower than book offer and within a few hours he accepted.

Glad to finally add Reggie back to the collection. One reacquisition pursuit down with many, many more to go,


Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Card of the Day - 2015 Topps Museum : Adrian Gonzalez Base Blue Parallel (85/99)

I am determined to complete my checklist of wanted cards (minus the autos) from this year's Museum set before Bowman drops next week. This post is being written up on the 23rd of April so we shall see if I can do it or not. It would be much easier if I could acquire them like I did this one.

At the time of this acquisition the prices for Museum had not been released. As I write this post they have since the purchase date and this card clocks in with a high of $8 and a low of $3. Personally $2 would probably be the most I would fork over for this card. I haven't seen too many copies on eBay but this one popped up and it was right at my sweet spot of a price of .99 cents with no additional shipping costs. Nice. Traditional 7 day auction and on the last day there hadn't been a bid put on it. Seconds left and I put mine in and low and behold I was the only one to bid. 99 cent purchases are the best.

I expected the card to come in a PWE but was pleasantly surprised that it traveled to me in a bubble mailer. It ended up costing the seller money to sell this card. Ouch for him and good for me. Now to make my goal of acquiring all these blue beauties before Bowman is released. The hunt continues.

85 of 99

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Monday, June 29, 2015

Movie Review : Ted 2

He'sssss back.
That's right, our favorite foul mouthed talking bear is back for another round of raunchiness and you know I had this date circled on my calendar to catch this flick in the theater.

Most good comedies, which the first Ted was, do not need sequels and are lacking if they do make a second installment but I held out hope that Seth McFarlane wouldn't let us down with his newest chapter.

Highlights :

  • Raunchiness is alive and intact. No filters here
  • Same characters are back other than Mila Kunis. Kept from having to set up story and was just able to jump right into it.
  • Numerous cameos (not as much as Entourage though) and most hit it right on the head.
  • Pop culture references front and center with none being too sacred to make fun of.
  • Even at almost 2 hours there was little down time as story progressed at a quick pace.
Low Lights :

  • No Mila Kunis
  • I know Seth loves them but opening dance number was dragging way too long.

Final Thoughts :

You would think with minimal low lights that this is a perfect or a great movie. It is not but I sure laughed my ass off for most of the flick. If you are a fan of Family Guy or the 1st Ted then you will most likely enjoy this movie. If raunchy humor is not your cup of tea stay far away from this movie as you will probably be offended.

The plot is pretty bare (pun intended) as Ted is trying to have a baby but is informed that he is property and not a real "person" so he is not allowed to have kids. As the story moves forward it places the Thunder Buddies in various scenarios that beg for bad taste humor to ensue which they make sure happens. Blind people, geeks, nerds, multiple races et al are not immune to their hijinks.

I needed an escape when I saw this film and with low expectations due to it being a sequel I was treated to a laugh out loud comedy which didn't hold any punches and I couldn't be happier. This film is definitely not for everyone but if you typically like potty mouth humor you will probably love this movie.

Final Grade : B+

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.


Card of the Day - 2013 Topps Five Star : Mike Trout Silver Signatures Autograph Blue Parallel (19/25) BGS Graded Mint 9.0

This is my third calendar year back in the hobby and now I have my third autograph of the reigning AL MVP Mike Trout. Each year (2013,2014,2015) I have been able to secure an autograph of this great and still improving superstar. With prices going up every time baseball season comes around it's probably safe to assume that this is probably my one and only autograph I will be acquiring this year of Trout's and I am okay with that.

After Kershaw, Trout is my favorite player to watch but his autograph cards are very pricey and I have to find ways through other sales to get enough funds to acquire another one for the collection. I ended up backing into this transaction as another mint graded Five Star Trout card that the seller and I agreed to in price reneged on when it was time to complete the transaction. In the end it was better for me as I picked up a more limited card, in a better color with the same exact grade. So I guess I should say thank you to the seller that doesn't stand by his word. In fact that card is still up for sale on eBay so I can only assume he is playing hardball with other potential buyers.  

19 of only 25

While the non parallel of this blue card is nice enough you just can't beat a silver autograph on a blue background. It just seems to pop better. After the bad taste from the reneged deal subsided a tad I went back to eBay with funds still in hand for a Trout autograph and found this one on a traditional auction. No BIN and/or best offer available so I would have to play the auction game for 7 days. Don't know how many people were watching this card but when the last day of the auction came there was still no bids on this card. With the knowledge that there are only 25 copies of this card and only 2 have been graded by BGS (other one is an 8.5) I expected more action on it but happy there wasn't.

Only one graded this high

The last hour approached and still not bids. Was starting to think I could really score a great deal on this card but I didn't want to get ahead of myself. 10 seconds left and I put my bid in and waited the remaining time left to see if it would hold. It did as I ended up being the only one to bid on it. Oh Yeah!!!. For 25% less than the agreed price of the reneged deal and a lot less than a raw version of this card I picked up my third Trout autograph and couldn't be happier. Can't wait for 2016 and whatever autograph I can score then.

Perfect auto

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day.