Tuesday, February 20, 2024

2023 Topps Chrome Update Blaster Opening!

Unlike the "Sonic" box from last time, I both understand and enjoy this product. As a fan of the Topps Chrome brand, this is a fun box to open. I like how Topps has taken the “Update” series and really found its niche. In addition to the new players on new trams concept, they’ve added in the “rookie debut” cards as well as all stars and combos. So, what was one a set made up of players you’ve never heard of and an occasional star that changed teams has become absolutely stuffed with stars and key rookies. In this case, I was able to get both.

How did this box go? I'm glad you asked.



Here's the box.


With a very shiny Kenley Jansen card. A card that special must be numbered, right?



Yup. Out of only 250. Nice pull of a Red Sox All-Star.

Unfortunately, that was the only Sox card from the box. At least it was a good hit. Can't complain about that.

If you want to see the rest of the box, go check out the opening on my YouTube video. And feel free to like/subscribe while you're there.

How did your box go?

Monday, February 19, 2024

Go Red! 2023 Topps Heritage High Number Kenley Jansen

February is American Heart Month. As a nod to the Go Red for Women activities going on this month to help raise awareness, I thought I'd contribute several "red" themed posts sprinkled throughout the month.

Let's talk about this card...




Kenley Jansen was an all-star closer for the Red Sox in 2023. It will be interesting to see what his role will be moving forward. Whether it's in a modified closer role, or with another team. It's always hard to take public comments from management at face value. But, it seems like Breslow wouldn't object to the "closer by committee" approach. Whether tht would only apply if Jansen is dealt first remains to be seen. But, either way it will be an interesting season for Jansen. 

The card itself is on the bland side. The blurry player name certainly doesn't help. But, the red is really forced into the design. With all the different colored parallels Topps produces, it's probably hard to make sure every one workes with every individual card design. But, this one misses the mark for me.

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I'm sure you all remember Miss District of Columbia
Jude Maboné from her interview with us. Her "heart health" community service initiative is, obviously, quite relevant this month. As such, she's supporting the Simon's Heart campaign this month (and every month). I highly recommend you join her efforts with a donation if you are able. You can find the link here.

Support her efforts, and Go Red!

Tuesday, February 13, 2024

2022 Topps Chrome Sonic Hobby Lite Box Opening!

I’m not sure I understand this product. While I love Topps Chrome as much as anyone, and more than some, I think that’s probably enough. If Topps wanted to have a set with Pulsar refractors or whatever they’re calling them, they could just add that to the regular Chrome set. There are already 36 million chrome parallels in the standard set. Why create a whole new set just to add a couple more? But, all that aside, this is still a fun box to open. Like I said, I like Topps Chrome. And, this is just more of that. So, file this under “Useless, but good”.

How did this box go? I'm glad you asked.


Here's the box. Let's just skip right past that.


Here's a nice horizontal card of Devers. Virtually identical to the standard Topps Chrome Devers. I don't feel like squinting to notice a code written on the back of the card means I have a new card. 



OK. So this Schwarber card here is completely differnt than his regular Chrome card. You see, if you look closely, the "Topps Chrome" logo is in the upper left of this card. On his regular Chrome, it's on the upper right. It's as different as night and later that night.

And there you have it. I guess it went well. Got two "different" Red Sox cards. Although, I'm annoyed I needed to get a new binder page for this "new" set. Getting new cards is always good.

If you want to see the rest of the box, go check out the opening on my YouTube video. And feel free to like/subscribe while you're there.

How did your box go?

Monday, February 12, 2024

Go Red! 2021 Topps Stadium Club Red Foil Chris Sale

February is American Heart Month. As a nod to the Go Red for Women activities going on this month to help raise awareness, I thought I'd contribute several "red" themed posts sprinkled throughout the month.

Let's talk about this card...



This is a really nice card of the Red Sox departed former ace. Stadium Club is known for its photography, and this card is no exception. Sale is nicely framed and the ball is captured in flight. That always makes for a fun element in a show. I suppose if I had one minor criticism, it's the cropping of Sale's left hand. They couldn't shift the picture over a millimeter to avoid cutting off the tip of his index finger?  

Of course, after his run with the Sox, Sale has moved to Atlanta. While he wasn't quite everything we hoped he would be during his time in Boston (Not everyone is Pedro, after all) he brought the city another title and closed out the deciding game in style. That's one of those moments that lives with you, and makes any stint with the Sox a successful one.

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I'm sure you all remember Miss District of Columbia
Jude Maboné from her interview with us. Her "heart health" community service initiative is, obviously, quite relevant this month. As such, she's supporting the Simon's Heart campaign this month (and every month). I highly recommend you join her efforts with a donation if you are able. You can find the link here.

Support her efforts, and Go Red!

Friday, February 9, 2024

Shannon Kelly Visits Section 36!

Section 36 had another visitor! 
Shannon Kelly is passionate about self-care, a talented singer, and the current Miss Champlain Valley. I was so excited that she was willing to visit with us to discuss those topics, and a few more. 

So, let's see what happens when Shannon Kelly visits Section 36!

What made you decide to try for the Miss Vermont crown as Miss Champlain Valley?

I began getting involved with the Miss Vermont Scholarship Organization in 2020 because I was looking for a performing arts opportunity in the midst of lockdown. 4 years later, I’ve acquired key skills, made lifelong friendships, and learned to value myself in ways that make me so excited to come back and rock the Miss Vermont 2024 stage!


What is something Yamuna Turco is doing as Miss Vermont that you would want to emulate?

Yamuna has served wonderfully as Miss Vermont, and will leave a lasting impression on the legacy of the organization. One of the things I admire most about her reign and hope to emulate with mine is her sense of joy. Yamuna is able to brighten up any room she walks into, and can make anyone feel comfortable and important when they talk to her. 


How would you complete the sentence, “I get great satisfaction when ___”?

I get great satisfaction when I can make people smile! In my everyday life, I’m always cracking jokes, and i’m a fierce optimist. If I can brighten someone’s day with a compliment or a story, there is no greater prize. 


How did you select your community service initiative Self C.A.R.E.?

My Community Service Initiative, Self CARE: Creating Accessible Resources for Everyone, was formed after I realized how deeply basic self care was impacting my mental health. As someone diagnosed with anxiety, depression, and ADHD, finding the motivation to perform simple self care tasks can be challenging for me. Through competing, I began to rediscover the drive to take care of myself, in order to make myself feel and look good. I realized that in order to make self care a bigger part of peoples lives, someone needed to talk about it and find ways to make it more accessible for lower income folks.


As a talented singer, what is your favorite part about performing your talent on stage?

As a theater major, I love being given opportunities to perform. My favorite part of performing my Miss Vermont 2024 talent is telling a story of determination and hope. The character in my song has struggled, but she’s sure that through perseverance, she can achieve her goals.


You are currently a theatre major at Borough of Manhattan CC. Where do you see your studies taking you?

After I graduate college, I’d love to become a professional actor or director. Theater is what I’m more familiar with, but I’d love the opportunity to try working in film as well!


If you could be a Disney character for a week, who would you choose? Why?

If I could be any Disney character for a week, I’d be Tinker Bell! I’ve seen every Tinker Bell movie, and she was always my favorite character growing up. I love her friends, fashion, and being able to fly doesn’t hurt either! 


If you had an extra ticket to see the Red Sox play at Fenway Park, who would you take with you? Why?

If I could see the Red Sox play at Fenway Park, I would take my little brother with me! I love spending time with him, and we would have an awesome time together. 


Is there a feature or activity at a baseball game that you’d especially like to experience?

In the past Miss Vermont and Miss Vermont’s Teen have been able to throw the first pitch for Vermont’s baseball team, the Vermont Lake Monsters! If crowned that’s an event I’d be stoked to participate in! 


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A first pitch is always a fun time. Hope she can make that happen!

As always, I want to thank Shannon for visiting with us, and for sending along the pictures to go with the interview.

I'm sure you'd like to follow along with her during her journey. You should be sure to check out her title's Instagram account, as well as her personal website
They're both great ways to keep track of everything she has going on. 


Thanks again Shannon, and good luck in the future!



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