Exit, Pursued By A Bear

I’ve put this off for a long time…

Sadly this will be my final post for The Wax Fantastic! You probably saw this coming for some time but I just wanted to go and make it all official!

When I first started this blog off just over two years ago it was with the lofty aim of uniting UK-based sports card collectors. Along the way I’d like to think we’ve got some way to achieving that somewhat ambitious and over-sized goal.

I say ‘we’ as it’s certainly not something that I’ve been solely responsible for. Over time I’ve met dozens of of like-minded collectors, both here and overseas, and I’d like to think that we’ve made some huge strides in bringing together our somewhat fragmented collecting community here in the UK.

I’ve also been blessed to have made several new friends through this blog – contact via the wonders of Social Media, or even in person, has meant that I’ve been able to reach out and share in the anecdotal lives of numerous other card collectors. Building relationships in this way has simply highlighted what a great community we’re all part of. The levels of trust, honesty and integrity that I’ve come across on my travels have had an incredible impact on me over the last couple of years, and I’m proud to have been accepted into this community; accepted as one of you!

However I’ve now decided to move on from baseball cards.

Over the last 12 months my interest has slowly waned in the modern baseball card and what it stands for. I no longer see any innovation in what Topps is producing. The same products seem to get released year after year with nothing more than a fresh lick of paint and a couple of extra bells and whistles. If we do get ‘new’ products more often than not they’re of the over-priced, high-end variety… Out of reach for those of us with the more modest of card budgets.

It’s easy to blame this stagnation on the exclusive licence agreement that Topps has with MLB, and many will. It’s incredibly simple and straightforward to bash Topps over the perceived state of the hobby, but to what end? Back in 2010 Topps stated that their aim was to bring kids back to the hobby – I’ve never seen nor heard of any evidence of where this has happened. The most ‘innovative’ of the products that Topps has given us recently is Topps Bunt. Thousands love the idea of digitized card collections and flocked to it in droves. Personally I thought it was all a pile of shit, but that’s just me 🙂

I like a lot of what Panini has done with baseball cards but feel they are shackled by a lack of licence with MLB. Without that in place I don’t feel that collectors will ever truly embrace Panini as a baseball card manufacturer. That might be why their business model has taken them down the route of an exclusive licence with the NBA and the NFL.

However please don’t misunderstand. I still think that Topps produce some beautiful looking cards. It isn’t all about the ‘evils’ of Topps and the current state of the hobby. Other factors such as increased overseas shipping costs from the US and a general lack of disposable funds have both played their part in this decision to leave the hobby right now.

One day I may well come back, but if I do I feel that I’ll only be looking at cards and products that were released prior to 1980. Old cards still grab my attention and who knows when I might dip my toe once more into the waters of vintage card collecting?

So for now I’m gone. Stick a fork in me, turn me over… I’m done!

All that remains is to thank you all for your support. Your comments, critiques, honesty and good humour will be something that I’ll treasure for a long time.

The Wax Fantastic will still live on as a blog! It still gets around 30-40 views a day and there’s still a lot of interest in some of my old posts around the pitfalls global shipping and dealing with eBay. I just won’t be posting anymore.

The Twitter account – @TheWaxFantastic – will also still be active but I’ll probably end up deleting that in due course. 598 followers as well! Who’d have thought it?!

I won’t be leaving the world of blogging completely though. I’ve had too much of a good time putting voice to my inane ramblings over the months, and I have too many interests that occupy my thoughts on a daily basis, that I still wanted to share some stuff with anyone out there that’s prepared to listen. And with that in mind my new blog was born…

Andy’s Big Blog O’Stuff 

I’ll be covering pretty much anything from popular culture – films, books, TV, games, sports, and so on, and so on! Hell, we might even squeeze in some baseball cards from time to time – stranger things have happened 🙂

So if you feel like dropping by to shoot the breeze, chew the fat and crack the wise then click on the above link and hit the follow button (top right at the moment, until it no doubt moves). I’ve not posted anything just yet, and the design format may well change, but you’ll get a notification through each time I put up something new.

So it’s goodbye from The Wax Fantastic for now! If anyone arrives here looking for details on UK-based card collectors then please head on over the the Yahoo Group that’s looked after my good friend, Glenn Codere. Here’s the link – UK Sports Cards

I’ll still be stopping round there occasionally, just tell Glenn I sent you 🙂

My new Twitter account is @50ShadesOfBates

Give me a follow and I’ll follow you back!!

Take care all and thanks for the ride. It’s been a blast!

Best

Andy