My life in a milk crate


While cleaning out the basement over the holiday break, I came across a milk crate full of items saved from my childhood — pretty much all that survived my formative years.


I was a conflicted child — raised as a Cowboys fan but then moved to the D.C. suburbs and convinced that the Skins were THE team. Remember when it cost just $15 to see an NFL game?


I wasn’t quite old enough for cigars, so a Whitman’s Sampler box was the next best thing to house my collection of Garbage Pail kids cards.


At the tail end of my comic collecting years, graphic novels started to appear on the shelves, and I had a few. The 1989 Batman movie was a big moment in my life, and is probably my most memorable movie experience, being the first midnight showing I was allowed to attend. I collected everything that I could get my hands on that promoted the movie. Oh, and yes, that is a signed photo from Rachel Hunter — don’t ask me why.


I had all the cards and stickers.


I also liked G.I. Joe.


And I dropped way too much money on these Marvel trading cards and stickers. These were the days long before eBay — you couldn’t just buy the complete set with a click of the mouse (heck, this was before our computer even had a mouse). I had to build these collections one pack at a time. That money probably would have been much better spent on actual comics.


Not sure why I saved these mini comic paperbacks.


The Hard Rock Cafe was HUGE back in the 80’s, and when they opened a DC location, all us teenagers begged to go — and then they opened a Planet Hollywood too. Heaven.


Once I got my driver’s license, I went to a lot of concerts, but only seemed to save a few of the ticket stubs.  When I saw Aerosmith at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, there was a little known band opening for them who’s lead singer was so drunk he was booed off the stage — that band was Guns N’ Roses. Oh, I was also a huge fan of the WWF.


Hey look at that, a letter from Mark Hamill! I have no recollection of this letter, and it was fun to find it tucked away among all my old sports patches and cub scout ribbons.

Sadly, this is pretty much everything that I managed to save through the years.  I’m probably the most nostalgic guy you’ll meet, so why is this crate only half full?


  1. says

    Oh, I have one of these DC’s Years Best Comics Digests from 1985 with the famous Swamp Thing “Anatomy Lesson” story. Good stuff. I wish they still did this kind of thing, but I don’t know that digest books are really in vogue anymore.

  2. says

    What great stuff . I love when I find hidden gems like that. Oh and I got the package. Waiting to open it tomorrow when I am over all my week stress. It’s my gift to myself. Look to my blog for a post about the whole moment. I am looking forward to it. Let me know if you find anything new that you want to pass along.

  3. George says

    Def Leppard Hysteria!!!! Nice!

    California Raisins were hysterical.

    Awesome Walter Payton card as well. Go Bears!

  4. says

    This is pretty cool, Brian. I LOVE stumbling upon relics from my childhood that I’ve forgotten about.

    – I’ve always been a Cowboys fan, love the Danny White card.

    – I’m curious as to what that ‘Hulk & Thing’ mag is. I’ve never seen this.

    – Love the Batman ’89 movie mag (have it as well) & cards. I actually have an unopened box of the cards and I’m now seriously considering opening it.

    – What year are those Marvel & GI Joe cards from? I’ve never seen those either.

    – Lastly, that ‘Star Wars Fan Club’ stationary is too awesome.

    • Brian says

      The Hulk and Thing graphic novel was by Jim Starlin and Bernie Wrightson, and was put out in 1987.

      The Marvel cards are from 1987, and the GI Joe cards are too — the GI Joe cards were produced by Comic Images.

  5. says

    I WISH that there was some milk-crate laying around full of my childhood ephemera, waiting for me to discover it. Alas, all of my toys were unceremoniously bagged up in trash bags and taken to the dump when my mother decided I was too old for them.

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