Like many collectors I have my lists and my priorities, but I quickly and often find myself not following them as I pursue my overall goal in a haphazard fashion.
So, I am going to try to spend 2018 (starting now-ish) being a little more focused. And one of the first focuses is going to be back filling my hockey sets. Starting with the 2nd last (but really the last stand alone) set of O-Pee-Chee Hockey before they disappeared as a stand alone company.
The 1993-94 O-Pee-Chee Premier Hockey Set.
I am only a small handful away from completing the base set, and now I am going to try to focus on the Gold Parallel a bit more and see if I can knock this set down as well.
It is pretty much the same as the base, but on the front the names are highlighted in gold foil.
With the exception of a couple card back variation sets (grey vs white back in the 73-74 O-Pee-Chee and the 77-78 Blank Backs) this was the first real parallel set made on purpose by O-Pee-Chee (Topps as well and they started doing it in baseball at the same time).
So if you love parallels you can thank this set. If you hate parallels, well you can blame this set.
Above are 3 new ones for my set. Only 369 left to go!
First a quick poetry lesson from Wikipedia,
The Song of Hiawatha is an 1855 epic poem in trochaic tetrameter by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow that features Native American characters. The epic relates the fictional adventures of an Ojibwe warrior named Hiawatha and the tragedy of his love for Minnehaha, a Dakota woman. Events in the story are set in the Pictured Rocks area on the south shore of Lake Superior. Longfellow’s poem, though based on native oral traditions surrounding the figure of Manabozho, represents not a work of transmission but an original work of American Romantic literature.
Why bring this up? Well the whole poem is 296 verses long, but tucked in neatly within verse 31 is the following.
“Shawondasee, fat and lazy,
Had his dwelling far to southward,
In the drowsy, dreamy sunshine,
In the never-ending Summer.
He it was who sent the wood-birds,
Sent the Opechee, the robin,
Sent the blue-bird, the Owaissa”
Did you see it? Did you notice it? Right there on the 2nd last line “Opechee, the Robin”
And now you know where the name comes from for O-Pee-Chee the card company.
And just to tie it back to my collection. Here is a Robin I just got in a trade. From the 1965 O-Pee-Chee set (110 years after the poem was published).
The 1993-94 O-Pee-Chee Premier set was pretty much the end of the line for the original O-Pee-Chee brand with hockey cards (The last real baseball set is also 1994).
It would linger on life support for one more year and then another as a Topps parallel only before completely being absorbed by Topps.
It had a decent base set, and a couple cool inserts including the Black Gold (mirroring the Topps baseball set of the time).
I finally added my 1st two cards from that set in Theo and Stevie Wonder. That gives me 2 of 24 for the insert and gets this set off and running,
Look how shiny these are.. So pretty.
2015-16 OPC Glossy Rookies.
And now I have 3.
I wanted to post these last week, but you know life.
These are from the 1988 O-Pee-Chee Fright Flicks set. Basically photo stills from Horror/Thriller movies like Alien, Nightmare on Elm Street or Predator.
They are kind of an updated 80’s version of the original 1973 Topps/O-Pee-Chee You’ll Die Laughing set which used the same sort of classic horror images matched with silly captions.
The complete set is 101 cards and I managed to pick up about 20 in a recent trade. Most of the backs have corny facts on them, but some form a puzzle.
The Wayner, The Great One, Ole 99. I still remember the final game like it was yesterday. Praise You by Fatboy Slim playing as you circled the ice one last time.
A classy way to retire, no season long farewell tour. Just an announcement and then poof gone a days later.
The 1999-2000 Upper Deck set. The last cards to picture your last season. (Although you still appear on many card sets to this day).
Started out the set with a 10 card mini subset. 9 cards picturing you as an Oiler (You’ll always be an Oiler despite what others think)
1 as a King (and you are the King).
Here are 6 of them.
Sometimes getting one card you need in a trade is worth it. It could be your favourite player, It could be the one card you need for the set to be completed or started. Or it could be the one card that is worth more than the others.
In this case, it’s just one more card toward completing the set. But it is a good one.
1979 O-Pee-Chee Dale Murphy.
Although his RC is from 1978 this is the first card he appears alone on.
Undervalued and deserving of a place in the Hall Of Fame (he missed the cut), he will always remind me of the 80’s in Atlanta.