Already 20 years since HS grad??...& I'm VERY proud of my so-called "worthless" liberal arts degrees
In light of that other thread asking for our ages I can't believe it's already been twenty years since I was among the last graduating class of the 20th century (Fun Fact: Roughly the same about of time passed from the release of Prince's 1999 song in 1983 (sixteen years) and his passing approximately sixteen years after the year 1999 in 2016.)! And of course it's also been 16 years since I earned BA's in history and political science from the University of Kentucky in 2003. They are by far my most cherished and hard earned possessions. And next week happens to be me and the old lady's 14th anniversary as well!
As for what all this has to do with trading cards, well one of the first things I did when I came to Lexington was to find the best card shop there (buying stuff on Internet/Ebay was still a fairly new thing at the time) and Baseball Card Warehouse (I think they're still around) was a major help in getting me started with my complete set collection! My first ever complete sets were 1987-89 Topps and let me tell you, I still remember sitting at the table there and sorting that 1987 factory set and putting it in my album...I also got the 1989 Topps factory set (of course I did...it along with 1989 Donruss was the first packs I was ever bought when I was nine at the time) but I had to settle for a hand set of 1988 because he didn't have factory set for that year. The cards I collected when I was at UK (I still have nearly all those sets) along with the retro video game cartridges I started doing my last two years there (my card and game hobbies I seem to rotate my focus on one or the other every few years or so) are among my fondest memories of all time.
(I originally posted this at the Nintendo Age forum (retro video games are one of my "other hobbies):
I've been meaning to get this off my chest for a while now. So a little over 16 years ago (05/10/2003 to be exact the year of our basketball centennial! I was HS class of 1999, last of the 20th century!) I graduated from the University of Kentucky with a BA in history and a BA in political science (the requirements for each were so intertwined with each other so of course I used three summer school sessions at the local then-UK affiliated community college to get the 144 credit hours needed to get double degrees rather than mere "double majors"). Granted I didn't make as good grades as I would've liked (2.57 GPA) but me working almost six hour nights and all day Saturday ( I did need some spending money plus it helped keep the loan debt way down) plus my then undiagonosed Aspergers (which I didn't find out I had until 2006) might have had something to do with that.
So why am I bringing all this up you might ask? Well it's just that I often see headlines/opinion pieces/whatever about how "worthless" liberal arts degrees/majors are and I could not disagree with this notion more. Now look, I knew all along history and political science weren't the kind of majors one makes anywhere near six-figures off of. I know those trendy, sexy STEM majors are the "in-thing" but I just wasn't cut out for those. So I majored in the subjects I enjoyed and even to this day I enjoy doing things like reading those Britannica yearbooks (I did World Book ones last year) which I call "freelance" learning. No worrying about grades, no strings attached.
Unfortunately I made the mistake of moving back to my hometown area instead of staying in Lexington where there of course there were far more good job opprotunites. Once I was finally able to move out on my own in 2004 the only jobs that were avaliable at the time that I could get was a brief stint at the local hospital cafeteria, grocery checker form 2004-2010, and a brief stint at a local factory in 2011 before I was forced to go on disablity (VERY long story, please don't ask me for details).
Of course I wanted something more "college level" but aside from the opporutines just not being there in my area at the time, I honestly after college had no idea exactly what I wanted to do. It was my big dream/goal to graduate from college at the best university I could get into and once that was done, it was like, "now what?" I certainly toyed with some ideas such as clerical, sub teacher (you have to have a masters to be a full fledged teacher), and so on but again, despite my best efforts and paying my dues working the above jobs and such, it just didn't pan out.
So this may sound like a classic story of "See? Your college degrees ARE worthless!!" but the fact of the matter is that I'm one of very few in my immediate family who went to college (my parents didn't even finish HS)...the only others I know of off the top of my head was one of my great-great grandfathers who was a renowned old-fashioned country doctor and one of my first cousins once removed who served as a local judge who married me and my wife Denise in 2005 All the more reason I consider it a real privilege to get the chance to go to a real good college when just a couple generations or so ago only those who were rich and/or super smart or athetic enough to get a scholarship got to go to college for the most part. And from the start my attiude was that even if I never get/got a chance to do a "college level" sort of job/career I have none/zero regrets whatsoever for getting so called "wasted"/"worthless" degrees. I was able to get many experiences and memories at UK that will last me a lifetime and I know for a fact that I would've very very much regretted it for the rest of my life if I did not finish college.
So forgive me if I rambled on and on too much like I sometimes do, but bottom line is for those of you in college or going...there is no such thing as a "worthless" degree. Even to this day only a little over 30%ish of Americans have at least a bachelors so anyone who does achieve it regardless of their chosen major or its earning potential should feel very very proud and very lucky to get that kind of chance. I do!
All that being said though, my wife was able to get two masters degrees and back in her day got to work with a few Ivy League places along with John Hopkins...so I'm even more proud of her (and I tell people all the time how she's the REAL brains of our family! ) and quite envious of her smarts .
I don't suppose there's any other proud college grads here is there? Incidentally, this year is the 80th anniversary of the retirement and HOF induction of the Pride of Yankees...who went to one of the Ivys! Columbia to be exact.
1974 Topps set : 38, 46, 48, 78, 79, 102, 138, 143, 148, 151, 156, 193, 201, 210, 214, 223, 241, 243, 256, 264, 266, 268, 277, 289, 290, 316, 349, 367, 379, 391, 392, 398, 404, 405, 429, 435, 460, 466, 492, 504, 535, 552, 570, 577, 592, 603, 610, 614, 616, 633, 654, 655, 660
1997 Finest silver: 115, 135, 139, 145, 310
1995 Ultra Gold Medallion Sets: Golden Prospects, HR Kings, On-Base Leaders, Power Plus, RBI Kings, Rising Stars