Celeb Rookie: The NOID

And now a brief history of The NOID according to Domino’s Pizza:

The NOID loves to ruin your pizza. He might try to make your pizza cold. He might try to make your pizza late. He might try to make your pizza taste like cardboard. Somehow the NOID will try to make sure your pizza is just not right. That’s why he’s Pizza Enemy #1.

The NOID has been around for a long, long time. He has brothers, sisters and cousins all over the world. People everywhere tell stories about the little creatures who make things go wrong. Gremlins foul up machinery of all kinds. Pixies and goblins haunt the forest. Murphy’s lawyers are everywhere. And you know what they can do.

Long ago, these little folk would cause trouble for anyone, any time. As the world filled up with more and more people doing more and more things, the Small Ones had to specialize so they could keep up. After all, anyone can make a mistake, but to make a complete shambles of anything, you have to know what you’re doing.

The first tribe of troublemakers to specialize was known as the Neandernoids, who decided to become experts in ruining food. They knew that people would always have to eat, so they would have lots of chances to make life miserable for people.

The Neandernoids found many ways they could ruin meals and snacks. They started with simple tricks, like blowing out fires so woolly mammoth cutlets couldn’t be sautéed. Over time, they built up a large bag of tricks. Anyone who has had lumpy gravy, burned toast or weak coffee has been a victim of the Neandernoids.

After a while, some of the Neandernoids went on to specialize even more. Known as the Cro-Magnoids, these pests studied ways to spoil food served by restaurants and institutions.

While people in food service faced the task of obtaining, preparing and serving large amounts of food to the public, the Cro-Magnoids developed their techniques to make eating away from home a disappointment. Long lines, dirty silverware and airline food are Cro-Magnoid ideas.

About 75 years ago, the renegade NOID left the Cro-Magnoid tribe. A rugged individualist, the NOID wanted to work alone. He was ready to ruin one special food all by himself.

Pizza was becoming a popular food at that time. The NOID hated the idea that any food could be so delicious, so perfect, and still be served as a nutritious meal or snack. The NOID’s plan was to make pizza the first in a long list of foods he alone had conquered.

The NOID thought delivered pizza would be especially simple to ruin. He was sure he could take advantage of a pizza served miles away from where it was made. He just knew that delivered pizza would be easy pickin’s.

Early on, the NOID was very successful. Millions of people received pizza that just wasn’t right; it was cold, or soggy, or late. Some people claimed that the box tasted better than the pizza, so the NOID knew that he was winning.

Then came his fall. What the NOID didn’t plan on was a pizza delivery system designed just to make top-quality pizza and deliver it fast. The NOID didn’t plan on Domino’s Pizza.

At Domino’s Pizza, we AVOID THE NOID:

We keep the NOID out and all the quality in. We make pizza precisely to your order with the finest ingredients. And Domino’s Pizza delivers your hot, delicious pizza in less than 30 minutes. That’s all we do, and we do it all the time with our NOID-PROOF delivery system.

The NOID loves to ruin your pizza. He’s tough. He’s persistent. He’s almost everywhere, but he is avoidable:

Just remember that Domino’s Pizza delivers so you can AVOID THE NOID. One call does it all!

Merchandise featuring the NOID is everywhere. Some of it reaches into the hundreds of dollars. Despite making his debut to the world in 1986, it wasn’t until 1988 when the NOID was first featured on a trading card.

To celebrate the Detroit Tigers 20th anniversary of winning the World Series in 1968, Domino’s released a 28-card set in 1988. The set is rather forgettable as it was printed on extremely thin card stock, and contains more errors than you could possibly count. Perhaps this was done on purpose to make you think the NOID was responsible for all of the errors?

Card #27 shows the NOID wielding a baseball bat. Apparently, at the time Tiger Stadium had a Domino’s Pizza in it. This card was meant to be used as a coupon to receive $1.00 off of your order only at the Tiger Stadium Domino’s Pizza. The coupon expired on October 20, 1988.

These sets are readily available, and quite easy to come by. Everything old is new again. Domino’s recently brought back the NOID in a commercial.

Oakland A’s ’21 Topps Chrome Auto Contest! – NOW CLOSED

This contest is for a Jonah Heim 2021 Topps Chrome RC Auto. Good luck!!!

Contest Details:

  • This contest will end Friday, September 10, 2021 @ 7:00 p.m. EST.
  • To enter, please leave a comment in this post.
  • You can enter once per day.
  • The winner will be selected at random.
  • Please provide a valid e-mail address when entering.
  • U.S. residents only.
  • The winner will receive an e-mail when the contest is over.
  • The winner has one week to send me their contact information or the contest will be held again.
  • Once the contest is over, I will need the winner’s mailing address so I can ship them this card for FREE!!!

Royals ’21 Topps Stadium Club Auto Contest! – NOW CLOSED

This contest is for a Kris Bubic 2021 Topps Stadium Club RC Auto. Good luck!!!

Contest Details:

  • This contest will end Friday, August 6, 2021 @ 7:00 p.m. EST.
  • To enter, please leave a comment in this post.
  • You can enter once per day.
  • The winner will be selected at random.
  • Please provide a valid e-mail address when entering.
  • U.S. residents only.
  • The winner will receive an e-mail when the contest is over.
  • The winner has one week to send me their contact information or the contest will be held again.
  • Once the contest is over, I will need the winner’s mailing address so I can ship them this card for FREE!!!

Yankees ’21 Topps Finest Auto Contest! – NOW CLOSED

This contest is for a Deivi Garcia 2021 Topps Finest RC Auto. Good luck!!!

Contest Details:

  • This contest will end Friday, June 18, 2021 @ 7:00 p.m. EST.
  • To enter, please leave a comment in this post.
  • You can enter once per day.
  • The winner will be selected at random.
  • Please provide a valid e-mail address when entering.
  • U.S. residents only.
  • The winner will receive an e-mail when the contest is over.
  • The winner has one week to send me their contact information or the contest will be held again.
  • Once the contest is over, I will need the winner’s mailing address so I can ship them this card for FREE!!!

Marlins ’21 Topps Inception Auto Contest! – NOW CLOSED

This contest is for a Jordan Holloway 2021 Topps Inception RC Magenta Auto #’ed/99. Good luck!!!

Contest Details:

  • This contest will end Saturday, May 15, 2021 @ 7:00 p.m. EST.
  • To enter, please leave a comment in this post.
  • You can enter once per day.
  • The winner will be selected at random.
  • Please provide a valid e-mail address when entering.
  • U.S. residents only.
  • The winner will receive an e-mail when the contest is over.
  • The winner has one week to send me their contact information or the contest will be held again.
  • Once the contest is over, I will need the winner’s mailing address so I can ship them this card for FREE!!!

This Fake LeBron James 2003-04 Topps Rookie Card Is Everywhere

Let me be clear. This is not the only counterfeit/unauthorized reprint of a LeBron James 2003-04 Topps #221 rookie card. Doing a quick search on eBay will result in countless examples. But the card I’m referring to in this post seems to be the one that surfaces the most often. When a player becomes as popular as King James its common for these types of cards to popup.

You can clearly see the coloring on the counterfeit/unauthorized reprint is much darker. And it just isn’t certain areas either. Everything on it is darker when compared to the authentic card. Both the front and back.

Inspecting the front you’ll notice that the font isn’t quite correct. It looks a bit thinner. Within the nameplate “LeBRON JAMES” sits lower too. On the authentic example there is some space between his name and the bottom of the nameplate.

In my opinion the biggest signs that the card is a counterfeit/unauthorized reprint can be found on the back. Overall the counterfeit/unauthorized reprint has a grainy tone to it. This specifically can be seen on the reverse side in the grey areas. On authentic examples these grey areas are smooth.

Two distinct white marks are a trademark red flag to this specific counterfeit/unauthorized reprint. Both are located on the back. One can be found above and slightly to the left of the Cavaliers logo. The other is directly beneath the letter “L” in “SCHOOL”.

Another area to look at is the foil used on the front. With authentic examples this foil shines and reflects light. Counterfeit/unauthorized reprints may look as if they have foil in the picture, but most will not reflect light like the authentic ones do. That’s because its not actual foil. Its just a scan of the real foil. This can be difficult to determine just by looking at a picture online. Having the card in-hand would make it much easier.

Counterfeit/unauthorized reprint front

Counterfeit/unauthorized reprint back

Authentic front

Authentic back

People use the word “reprint” or the letters “RP” on their listings in an attempt to fool you into thinking that specific card came from a manufacturer like Topps. Places like eBay don’t know how or just don’t care enough to learn how to distinguish between the two. The people making these homemade cards are fully aware that passing them off as the real thing could come back to haunt them. Calling them reprints might not bring in the same amount of money, but it still allows them to move their hoard of counterfeits. Its a horribly abused wording loophole.

I’ve seen a lot of people get taken advantage of with this counterfeit/unauthorized reprint. There are a bunch more like it floating around. Many even share some of the same characteristics. When you have headline after headline advertising the latest million dollar card sale it doesn’t take much for people to blindly jump in and starting buying cards they know very little about. Buy smart. Do some research before pulling the trigger.

How To Spot A Fake Jim Kelly 1984 Topps USFL Rookie Card #36

Wouldn’t it be fun to see new cards made that pay tribute to the USFL? I truly believe collectors would like to pull autographs of Steve Young in an LA Express uniform. Tell them to dig up one of Reggie White’s Memphis Showboats uniforms, cut it up, and place some swatches into a few cards. The list goes on and on. I’m not 100% sure how all the licensing works though when it comes to using team names and logos from a defunct league.

During it’s short lifespan, Topps issued two USFL sets. The first arriving in 1984, and the second in 1985. No packs. Each were issued in factory set form, and in much smaller quantities compared to their NFL counterpart. Hall of Famers such as Steve Young, Reggie White, and Jim Kelly made their cardboard debut in USFL uniforms. Their USFL rookies are in much higher demand compared to their first NFL licensed cards.

Lets get one thing straight. Topps has never issued any kind of USFL reprint. The 1985 set was the last USFL product they issued. Between you and me the word “Reprint” is being used way too loosely nowadays. An authentic “Reprint” originates from the card its modeled after original manufacturer. A homemade card doesn’t count as a reprint. That’s considered a counterfeit. People use the word “reprint” or the letters “RP” on their listings in an attempt to fool you into thinking that specific card came from a manufacturer like Topps. Places like eBay don’t know how or just don’t care enough to learn how to distinguish between the two. The people making these homemade cards are fully aware that passing them off as the real deal could come back to bite them. Calling them reprints might not bring in the same amount of money, but it still allows them to move their hoard of counterfeits. Its a horribly abused wording loophole.

Below are some tips for spotting a counterfeit Jim Kelly 1984 Topps USFL #36 Rookie Card. FYI – Most of these tips also apply to 1984 Topps USFL rookies of Steve Young, Reggie White, and Herschel Walker.

  • Centering – Authentic cards from the 1984 Topps USFL set are notorious for having bad centering. Most counterfeits have excellent centering because they want the card to look as good as possible. Its possible to find an authentic example with nice centering, but its just something to keep an eye out for.
  • Corners – Counterfeits tend to have perfect corners. The factory set boxes authentic cards come packaged in are made of flimsy cardboard. This makes it very easy for the corners to sustain damage.
  • Back Surface – With the pink/red back its common for authentic examples to have chipping (white areas) showing. The back is quite condition sensitive. Counterfeits tend to be too good looking.
  • Contrast – As you can see below the coloring on the counterfeit is much brighter compared to the authentic example.
  • Trademark/Copyright logos – On the front of the card you’ll see two “TM” logos. One is located next to the letter “L” in “USFL”. The other is next to the profile view of the helmet. Located on the bottom of the back are the USFL and Topps copyright logos. On counterfeit examples these trademark and copyright logos are blurry. Of all the things to look for when it comes to spotting a counterfeit blurry trademark/copyright logos is the first thing to watch for.

If capable, use a less expensive card from the set (one that nobody would bother to counterfeit) and place it side-by-side with the one you are thinking about picking-up. The characteristics between the two should be similar. Topps used the same printing techniques for that less expensive card as they did for the rest of the set.

Counterfeit front

Counterfeit back

Authentic front

Authentic back

Rays ’20 Topps Stadium Club Chrome Auto Contest! – NOW CLOSED

This contest is for a Mike Brosseau 2020 Topps Stadium Club Chrome RC Auto. Good luck!!!

Contest Details:

  • This contest will end Friday, December 25, 2020 @ 8:00 p.m. EST.
  • To enter, please leave a comment in this post.
  • You can enter once per day.
  • The winner will be selected at random.
  • Please provide a valid e-mail address when entering.
  • U.S. residents only.
  • The winner will receive an e-mail when the contest is over.
  • The winner has one week to send me their contact information or the contest will be held again.
  • Once the contest is over, I will need the winner’s mailing address so I can ship them this card for FREE!!!

Card of the Day: Orlando Pace 1997 Upper Deck Star Rookie #1

Celeb Rookie: Michael Keaton

Over the last few years The Flash movie has seen it’s share of development hurdles.  Despite having at least two more years to go before its released (unless there are more delays) things have started to take shape for now.  For awhile it has been rumored that Michael Keaton will reprise his role of Bruce Wayne/Batman for the film.  Fans saw Michael Keaton play Batman twice in Tim Burton’s 1989 Batman and 1992 Batman Returns.  After that Tim Burton and Michael Keaton clashed with the movie studio on how the third film should go.  Everyone went their separate ways and we saw Val Kilmer and George Clooney come in for the third and fourth films.

The exact story line of The Flash isn’t completely known.  We’re fairly certain the movie will pull stuff from the Flashpoint story.  Somehow Barry Allen a.k.a. The Flash will travel so fast he’ll jump over to an entirely different dimension and meet up with Michael Keaton’s Batman.  It’ll be interesting to see what his Batman has been up to since 1992.  Lots of DC characters are suppose to be in this one, including Ben Affleck’s Batman.  The DC Extended Universe (DCEU) has a bunch of movies under it’s belt with many more on the way.  Some of these movies take place in the same world while others are in a dimension all on their own.  The Flash is suppose to tie them all together and act as a restart while not forgetting the past.  It can be a little confusing.  Everything is quite fluid right now.  Studios are keeping a lot close to their chests.  So much could potentially still change.

Michael Keaton’s official rookie card can be found in the 1989 Topps Batman Series 1 set.  I consider card #3 to be his rookie.  Sure, the Title Card #1 and Darknight Detective #2 picture him as Batman, but card #3 just shows him as Bruce Wayne.  Its the first card in the set to do so.  I’m making an executive hobby decision and calling it his rookie card.  Thanks to the era of overproduction you can easily find this card in mass quantities.  It would be great if they made some buyback autographs using cards from this set.

In the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) Michael Keaton plays Adrian Toomes/Vulture.  Upper Deck produced a Spider-Man: Homecoming set in 2017 which contains Michael Keaton’s first pack inserted autographs.