“Same dances in the same old shoes; some habits that you just can’t lose. There’s no telling what a man might lose, after the thrill is gone.” ~ from Eagles’ 1975 album, One of These Nights
Written and recorded less than four years after the band’s founding, “After the Thrill is Gone” tells not the story of a marriage that has gone bad (as is the popular opinion), but of the relationships within the band souring.
On the liner notes of their Very Best of the Eagles album, Don Henley, who co-wrote the song with Glenn Frey, commented on the lyrics:
“As exciting as the whole Eagles thing was at times, some of the luster was beginning to wear off.”
“The flame rises but it soon descends, empty pages and a frozen pen. You’re not quite lovers and you’re not quite friends, after the thrill is gone.”
Collectors seem to know that (not so peaceful, easy) feeling when it comes to their relationship with relic cards. The cardboard treasures no longer have the same appeal as they did when manufacturers introduced the first memorabilia cards into the hobby back in the ’90s. They’ve become weary after the authenticity of certain pieces has come in to question; after seeing base cards tossed out like trash as pack/box breakers look for the ‘hit’; of card doctors pulling out swatches and putting in something more visually appealing, thus increasing the profitability of the card on an unsuspecting victim. But perhaps what collectors have tired of the most are the plain, single colored swatch. Sure, some of the more premium products have beautiful patches- but even those products have been guilty of using the plain swatch (albeit, usually much larger pieces).
“Time passes and you must move on; half the distance takes you twice as long. So you keep on singing for the sake of the song”
Being a team set collector who pursues Topps’ flagship, Heritage and Archives master team sets, I have plenty of mem cards to choose from for the collection. While I don’t consider them necessary pieces, I do try to add them if the price is right. This often means being willing to wait for a sale, an eBay code, trade opportunity on TCDB or making an offer on COMC.
The pieces of cloth (or bats, or whatever) might be plain, but for me, these things are all about the card designs. And Clubhouse Collection is a song I still enjoy singing.