1982 began a hobby that would last on-and-off for the next decade. My first pack of baseball cards came from the local ice cream joint, Coneheads. It was a pack of Topps and I would get a pack weekly through the summer…it didn’t add up to a whole lot of cards, but the place was pretty far from home (for a seven year old) and seemed to be the only source of Topps cards that summer. I would find out this wasn’t the case the next summer. There wasn’t too much of value in the set for collectors to get excited — the Cal Ripken Jr. rookie card being the exception. Every time I see a Topps card from 1982, I think back to summer little league games and ice cream sundaes in a miniature batting helmet.
There was a drug store down the street from my house by the name of Carl’s Drugs. It was only a few blocks away (much more accessible given my age) and it carried baseball cards as well, but they carried Fleer. I was able to accumulate a lot more of these cards than the Topps, even though they were never as desirable.
Like the Topps set in 1982, the Fleer set had little of note, except Ripken again.
Then there was the third brand: Donruss. I was able to find these at a corner market called Vick’s near my grandparents’ house. I had the least number of these that year, which was alright by me, because these were hideous. Even a seven year old could see these were just some ugly baseball cards. They haven’t really grown on me over the years, either.
I never came close to completing any of the three sets. I did manage to get the Cal Ripken Jr. card for Topps and Donruss — I guess that’s something. That summer I never managed to get that Fleer Ripken card, but did get it a few years later at a card shop.