Nope, your eyes do not deceive you–I have been seeking this Mark Fitzpatrick card for nearly two decades. It is from the 1992-93 Fleer Ultra set–the height of the “Junk Wax Era,” though I prefer to call those years “Neo-Vintage.” Specifically, this was from the Awards Winners insert set, back when inserts were actually cool and made sense (All-Stars, Award Winners….uh, Russians….)
It is true that I could have had this card ten times over if I bought it online. It just seemed that whenever I bought a bunch of cards from an eBay or Beckett Online seller, they didn’t have this one. And we all hate the idea of paying $2 to ship one card if that one card is only “worth” a quarter.
There is also something rewarding about finding a card like this in the wild. I found this at a recent show in a quarter box from a dealer named Big Jon, who is an avid Red Wings fan. Upon finding out that it was the last card I needed to complete my set, he told me that the card had been accidentally put in the quarter box, and was actually a ten-dollar card. Ah, that joke is about as old as the trading card industry itself, and yet it still makes me smile a little bit.
Hell, I’m in such a great mood I’ll even scan and share the back of the card….
One thing I’ve learned about collecting is that it is a waiting game. Sooner or later, we all tend to find what we are looking for, no matter how way there out or insignificant.