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Journal Archives from August 2012
eBay Watch - Mortimer Ichabod Marker

One of my 'grail' items was on eBay this week, and the bidding wrapped this afternoon. I've mentioned Bill Cosby's show from the early '80s, targeted towards preschool kids, called Picture Pages, and it remains one of my favorite things. The replica Mortimer Ichabod Markers that were sold for use with the home activity books are indeed rare - this being the first one I've seen this year, I believe. Well, it seems the price has gone up from around $150 to nearly $300 - well deserved! Click through for the final tally of this exciting and seldom seen collectible!

Someday - I'll add one to the Preserve!

Posted by charlie on August 31st 2012, 09:42 PM
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Toy Catalog - American Publishing, 1990

Behold, the 1990 American Publishing catalog!

I can almost hear the voices through the tubes:

"Why this catalog? So off topic! What could possibly be of interest here?!"

Well, let me just say that the 'topic' on the ol' Preserve has been getting broader lately, and that's just how it should be. However, in terms of why this catalog is great, we need look no further than an inclination to treat it as the historical document that it is! And what do we suddenly remember about 1990, by looking through this book? Oh, so many wonderful and hilarious things! Like after pages and pages of puzzles, I suddenly discover Columbo and Murder She Wrote - I certainly watched my share of those, and was delighted to see the celebrity appearances in this book.

Oh, and Columbo is surrounded by cats and unicorns, and Back to the Future II is on the opposite page of Jessica Fletcher there - perfect.

But maybe you want something of their own? Something that they were making that was (if such a thing is possible) cooler than cat puzzles? Well, seemingly out of place with the rest of their cute titles is a great Universal Monsters themed game - Monster Madness!

Looks like you can still readily find a copy of this game today, and it'll set you back about $75! The final cool thing about this book? It came with the original price guide insert. Context! Looks like Monster Madness wholesaled for $4.00 in 1990 - a decent investment, turns out!

Posted by charlie on August 29th 2012, 03:44 PM
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eBay Watch - Another Man-O-War!

Air Raiders collectors, take heart! In an unprecedented event, there are two, count 'em TWO, Man-O-War vehicles up for bid at the same time! This more recent lot is really quite beautiful, and also complete, including the dastardly, hard to find surveillance pod! Now, it seems that there is enough to go around, for everyone.

Posted by charlie on August 28th 2012, 06:29 AM
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eBay Watch - Air Raiders set, Man-O-War with Ball!

I know I keep posting sales for a few lines over and over, but I can't help having favorites! In particular, an Air Raiders auction just popped up with the unicorn-rare Man-O-War, and the super extra rare styrofoam ball! The only other time I've ever seen one of those yellow 'surveillance pod' is, well, my childhood example that is safe here at the Preserve. Also - want to see something cool? Here is the the delightful line-art from the Man-O-War instruction manual. It'll be exciting to see what happens with this lot - I sort of suspect it won't go very high, so it's a great chance for someone to pick up a set of most of this important mid 80s series!

Posted by charlie on August 24th 2012, 09:14 PM
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eBay Watch - Channel F / TelePlay Cart #1

Here's one for fans of the Fairchild Channel F, System II in particular. The platform was updated in 1979 when Zircon (clearly an evil King from Voltron) purchased the rights to the Channel F, and this updated system was rebranded in a number of different ways across Europe. What we have here is cart #1 for the Nordmende TelePlay from Germany. I mainly like it for the amazing drawing of a cat.

Posted by charlie on August 23rd 2012, 10:10 PM
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Blythecon 2012 - Convention Photo Wrapup

I've finally posted my overly large set of photos from the most excellent Blythecon that took place a few weekends ago in Grapevine, TX. For anyone still curious about these cool collector dolls, you should go browse through the many many images from the show! Ok, granted, some of the images are of the hot dogs I had in Fort Worth (perhaps the very best hot dog ever) and of the Skymall catalog and the insane resort hotel atrium, but that's all part of the fun. Click the image below for the convention landing page, and then check out the galleries from there!

Posted by charlie on August 21st 2012, 09:08 PM
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eBay Watch - Super Naturals Set

While not a 'complete lot' as the title of the auction may suggest, this is still a pretty nifty pile of Super Naturals figures for one money and is a complete lot of figures. Have a look at this lovely, boxed Tomb of Doom and figure set, and let's all see how high that price gets in the next 15 hours!

Posted by charlie on August 20th 2012, 09:50 PM
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Let's Build a Goddamn Tesla Museum

The dude who draws the fantastic web comic The Oatmeal has really decided to throw his convictions into an awesome project. He has made his well-founded admiration of Nikola Tesla well known in the past, providing a service to all of us who may not have appreciated just how awesome a gentleman he truly was.

Well, now he's involved in a project to purchase Tesla's old lab, and turn it into a museum celebrating Tesla and his contributions to our society. And he's raised almost $600,000 in 2 days on - holy mackerel! I think this seems like a great thing to be a part of, and I would encourage everyone to kick in a few bucks, and then go visit the museum in a few years and know you helped make it happen! Click the image below to put the fun in fundraising!

Posted by charlie on August 17th 2012, 07:56 PM
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Bullet in the Face - August 16th 10PM EST IFC

In honor of the premiere of...the first three episodes back to back (movie style)...of the brand new Alan Spencer show "Bullet in the Face" on IFC tonight at 10pm EST, here is the trailer! Be sure to catch it if you can.

Posted by charlie on August 16th 2012, 02:23 AM
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eBay Watch - Moto Frenzy Arcade Driving Game

For my pal Jason who is in the market for such things, here's a fun looking, apparently rare (if the seller is to be believed!) driving game, with one of those great motorcycle replicas that you can toss side to side before it snaps off and it all ends in tears. That's right - it's Moto Frenzy!

I admit to not remembering having ever played this game in the wild, and now days I'd say the chances of that are slim to none at best. Your best bet is looking like this $2000 auction, or perhaps an emulator, if you want to really lose 90% of the experience, but keep all of the bits!

Oh, and remember that it weighs about 1200 lbs! And of course it's local pickup only in Kansas! Ahh, the joy of arcade collecting.

Posted by charlie on August 15th 2012, 02:02 AM
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Selchow & Righter Catalog from 1985

If you're anything like me, and I suspect that at least some of you are, you didn't pay very close attention to the manufacturer of your Scrabble set when you were a kid. Well, that's part of the fun of this catalog voyage that we're all on, and I'm delighted to feature this Selchow & Righter book from 1985!

The opening text to this book proudly states that it is their 118th year - indeed a mighty accomplishment! There are all manner of cool things between these covers, not the least of which is the cover itself, featuring some splendid cut-out work. I was also delighted to learn about 'Scrabble People', who are a dip of the toe into the 'figure' market, which was of course amazingly strong in 1985. They even had play sets and vehicles! Don't believe me, check it out!

Certainly much of the book features variations on the main themes of Scrabble and Trivial Pursuit, and who can blame them. But they have a handful of other games you've probably never heard of, along with some very reassuring marketing plans and sales reps. We even learn about Alfreds Other Game!

If anything sums up the '80s concisely, I think it is now Alfred Butts, board game tycoon and ladies man.

Posted by charlie on August 14th 2012, 02:35 AM
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eBay Watch - Sega 32X Spider-Man

Time once again to check in on a current auction for the ever-more-popular Spider-Man title for the much maligned Sega 32X system. This one has a few days to go, and is already at $202.50 with a few eager bidders, and more impressively, 381 page view counter hits! Granted, it's an exceptionally nice example of the game, and even has the registration card for the truly OCD among us. Have a look, and add it to your stats sheets, fellow price trackers!

Posted by charlie on August 13th 2012, 02:29 AM
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Far East Friday Wisdom

I'm trying, Friday Fortune, I really am!

Posted by charlie on August 10th 2012, 10:21 PM
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eBay Watch - Starship Troopers Pinball

Know Your Foe!

Fans of this spectacular movie had reason to rejoice when Sega Pinball (of all things!) released the Starship Troopers machine in 1997. Given how few and far between new pinball machines actually are these days, it's a matter of quite some import when a property is selected. Also cool is that Sega Pinball was involved - a rare player in their own right - who made only a handful of machines, but all titles you've likely seen, like Twister, X Files and Goldeneye!

Up to 6 can play!!!

Posted by charlie on August 9th 2012, 08:20 PM
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eBay Watch - 1972 Blythes are Pricey!

As a followup to the Blythe convention of last weekend, and to start to catch up from my abysmal lack of posts over the last week, I figured that I'd educate everyone a bit more about Blythe.

While you could certainly learn all you want at the wiki page, the key to understand is that Kenner brought these dolls out in 1972. Since they are sort of terrifying, I guess they didn't do well with the children, so that was the only year they were on the market...until...Takara! Now Takara is making them, so they are awesome and high quality. However, all us collectors immediately realize that those figures from 1972 must be pretty rare and expensive, and boy howdy is that the truth!

A quick eBay search for "1972 Blythe" will show you that the dolls average over $1500 each - not bad! Here's a nice one to serve as an example, of course in beautiful condition.

So everyone keep an eye out at your local yard sales and swap meets - here's another gem that you might discover!

Posted by charlie on August 8th 2012, 06:50 PM
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Blythecon 2012 - This Weekend!

(Update 8/7/2012: Oops, so many [now fixed] typos in this hasty, sleepy post before the show! The trip and con were great - pictures soon.)

Do you know Blythe? Well, if you are at all into collector dolls, I bet you do! Blythe has had a long and interesting history over the last 30 years, and has earned a very dedicated fanbase who are scattered to the four corners of the globe. As with most collector properties that gain recognition and popularity, so follows the convention!

We have never been to a Blythecon, but this seemed like the year to do so - at 6am on Friday, we board a plane for Grapevine, Texas! The wild location helped with the decision, and we'll have a chance to check out a bunch of wineries, apparently, and stay at a massive resort complex with a glassed in multi-acre air conditioned waterpark. It all sounds over the top and wild, so keep up with the twitter feed and I'll try to keep some interesting content heading your way!

Posted by charlie on August 2nd 2012, 07:58 PM
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eBay Watch - Majestic Pile of TurboGrafx-16

In the market to start a TurboGrafx-16 collection from scratch, after all these years? Well this dude isn't messing around! No arguing over who gets to use the TurboStick, just give all three of your pals an equally massive controller, all jacked in through what appears to be an EB-fresh TurboTap. Enjoy some Blazing Lazers, R-Type and Victory Run, along with a pile of great 1-player games, and this set will get you ready for the oncoming winter of 2012!

Posted by charlie on August 2nd 2012, 02:12 AM
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eBay Watch - Rock Lords Bandai Flamestone / Rubyman

Do you like Rock Lords? Of course you do, we all do! In particular, I dig this boxed, beautiful 'Rubyman' figure in a Bandai package from 1986. You better know him as Flamestone, and it sounds like this one even has the weapon - score! For all you Rock Lords completists out there, don't miss out!

Oh yeah, dude also has Sunstone in a Bandai box, where he is known as Amberman. Interestingly, Amberman has a slightly higher current bid, whereas the US versions typically see Flamestone taking the slight edge in price.

Posted by charlie on August 1st 2012, 02:11 AM
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Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure

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Indiana Jones by Hasbro

New Additions
Play Meter Magazine: April 15, 1985
Play Meter Magazine
April 15, 1985
Yahoo! Internet Life: August, 2001
Yahoo! Internet Life Magazine
August, 2001
The Pinball Trader: July, 1986
The Pinball Trader
July, 1986
IEEE Internet Computing - July/August, 2005
IEEE Internet Computing
July/August, 2005
Science Activities - November, 1973
Science Activities
November, 1973
NASA Station Break Newsletter: June, 1991
NASA Station Break Newsletter
June, 1991
Countdown Magazine: December, 1990
Countdown Magazine
December, 1990
The Bisquick Banner: March/April, 1984
The Bisquick Banner
March/April, 1984
NASA Activities Newsletter: September, 1983
NASA Activities Newsletter
September, 1983
Egon: w/ Symmetrical Book Stacking
w/ Symmetrical Book Stacking


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