Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Elvis Has Entered the Building

For my first post on Pack a Day, I present to you a little piece of vintage non-sport. There's no hope for an autograph or costume card in here. Just a really ugly design and a 30-year-old piece of gum that is likely poisonous if eaten.

Elvis may have left us but his legacy is filled with all sorts of merchandise. In 1978 Donruss gave the world a set of trading cards, a year after his death. I don't know much else about the set so join me on this one-pack trip of discovery, good tunes and nasty gum.

The pack:

The title and cartoon Elvis illustration standout nicely to the bright red background. . The back of the pack features and add for "America's Favorite Bubble Gum!" Super Bubble. Never heard of it. But then again, I'm not American.

Time to open the pack.

Ack. It stinks like a chest that's just been opened after being closed for some three decades. Perhaps this symbolic chest will give us some treausre.

First card:

We have wax stais! It's a bright art deco design that looks more akin to the Topps baseball designs from a few years earlier. What a way to kick things off - The King in one of his trademark jumpsuits, singing and dancing in front of the mirror.

For the sake of history, here's the back of the card:

So it's a 66-card set and this is card 35. Each card appears to have a little bit of Elvis trivia, or facts as they liked to call them to seem more important. Elvis fact 35 reads:

He was born January 8, 1935 , in a two room house in Tupelo, Mississippi. The house now has been restored by the city and is a popular attraction among Elvis fans.

Elvis Fact No. 26
Words like Courage, Honor and Virtue, moved Elvis. General MacArthur's "Old Soldiers Never Die" speech was a favorite of Elvis'; he could recite it word for word.

Elvis Facts No. 9
Elvis received the highest fee ever paid for a single guest performance on television. He appeared on the Frank Sinatra Show for $125,000.

Elvis Facts No. 20
His generosity was his way of showing friendship and a way of saying thank you to someone he cared about.

Elvis Facts No. 24
Because of his hit song, Elvis collected "Teddy Bears." Once in Hollywood he won eight teddy bears at an amusement park at Long Beach.

Elvis Facts No. 14
Elvis starred in "Jailhouse Rock" in 1957. He sang seven songs in that movie, they are: "Jailhouse Rock," "Treat Me Nice," "Young and Beautiful," "I Wanna Be Free," "Don't Leave Me Now," "Baby I Don't Care," and "One More Day."

The final card in the pack looks like this on the front:

I flip it over and this is what I get:

Now the gum gluing itself to the card was to be expected. But wait. There is treasure here. If it were 1978 I'd be jumping up and down because I got two, count 'em, TWO sticks of gum! Bubble Gum-jo for me! Except it's 30-years-old and eating gum that old is gross.

Donruss' gum looks and feels kind of like pink sandpaper. It's got little sparkle flecks. I hope it's sugar. I did manage to pry the gum of the final card and let's just say it's got a gum stain on it. Our final tidbit of the day reads:

Elvis Facts No. 4
Elvis had four number one hits in 1956. His first recordings for R.C.A. were "Heart Break Hotel," "Hound Dog," "Don't Be Cruel" and "Love Me Tender." It (1956) was definitely the year for the King.

1 comment:

dayf said...

Elvis is everywhere

Elvis is everything

Elvis is everybody

Elvis is still the king

Man oh man

What I want you to see

is that the big


inside of you and me