Monday, September 28, 2020

Are You Gonna Go My Way?

On my last visit to my childhood home I was determined to order some authentic, world famous apizza from Frank Pepe's in New Haven. My cousin Ed is a frequent customer and was more than happy to place the order (with his Pepe's app) and pay for half of our haul. We took a nice Saturday drive through the food trucks at Long Wharf, past the former site of the New Haven Coliseum, and onto Wooster Street.

While my cousin stood in line waiting for the pizza I sat in his car listening to the Alternative station I'd listened to throughout my teen years. I don't think it was exactly the same - IIRC the station went away for a time and came back to the same call numbers and the same format. Anyhow, Radio 104 played six consecutive songs without commercial or DJ interruption. This was one of them:

You know that feeling when you hear a song you hadn't heard in forever, and you'd forgotten just how good it was? Yeah. That's how I felt rocking out in the parking lot at Pepe's.


The first Lenny Kravitz song I ever heard was "It Ain't Over 'Til It's Over", a slower jam with an Earth, Wind, & Fire vibe. I didn't like it at the time. Too... Vh1. 

"Are You Gonna Go My Way" changed my outlook on Lenny Kravitz. I was getting into Jimi Hendrix at the time and I couldn't help but think that Lenny was channeling Jimi with that catchy riff and the way he sings "but what I really wanna know is.."


Lenny's cover of "American Woman" was a huge hit with me for another reason: Heather Graham as the hottest hood ornament of the '90s. This video aired on MTV regularly, but I'd still call it NSFW, lol.

I actually have a couple Lenny Kravitz trading cards, thanks to his small but essential role as Cinna in The Hunger Games quad-rilogy.

Do you have a favorite Lenny Kravitz song?

Thanks for reading and listening!


Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Wantlist: 1993 Leaf

 It's the first day of Fall. Send me your leaves!

As I mentioned on my flagship blog The Collector, I am building the 1993 Leaf baseball set. Two sets to be precise. I've completed series 1 but I still need dozens of series 2. A detailed wantlist is below:

  • #226 Tom Brunansky
  • #228 Joe Carter (need 2)
  • #229 Ray Lankford
  • #237 Don Mattingly
  • #239 Dave Hollins (need 2)
  • #245 Roberto Alomar
  • #259 Storm Davis
  • #264 Pat Listach (need 2)
  • #271 Jay Buhner (need 2)
  • #282 Greg Gagne (incoming)
  • #293 Doug Drabek
  • #296 Jaime Navarro
  • #302 Reggie Jefferson
  • #304 Orestes Destrade (need 2, 1 incoming)
  • #305 Mike Maddux (need 2)
  • #318 Greg Myers
  • #319 Ken Griffey, Jr.
  • #326 Greg Maddux
  • #327 Dave Nilsson (need 2)
  • #330 checklist
  • #334 Greg Swindell (need 2)
  • #337 Joe Orsulak
  • #339 Stan Belinda
  • #346 Roberto Hernandez (incoming)
  • #348 Bill Krueger (need 2)
  • #351 Willie Banks
  • #355 David Hulse
  • #357 Greg Olson (need 2)
  • #361 Bryan Harvey (incoming)
  • #368 Rich Rodriguez
  • #373 Lance Johnson (incoming)
  • #384 Charlie Hough (incoming)
  • #389 Jeff Reardon
  • #391 Dave Magadan
  • #395 Craig Shipley
  • #398 Mike Stanton
  • #399 Luis Polonia
  • #400 Jack McDowell (incoming)
  • #401 Mike Moore
  • #402 Jose Lind (need 2)
  • #413 Willie Wilson
  • #425 Dave Valle (need 2)
  • #431 Cal Ripken, Jr. (need 2)
  • #432 Mo Vaughn
  • #433 John Smiley
  • #434 Omar Vizquel
  • #436 Cory Snyder

I also need all 100 cards from the update portion of the set, but I'm not going to worry about those until I finish the main set. If you have any 1993 Leaf singles listed above please comment or email me (sutherlandct @ and I'll be sure to send you something for your PCs or set build in return. 

Thanks for reading!


Friday, September 18, 2020

The Mighty Ducks

 I wanted to discuss the Mighty Ducks franchise on this blog..

...but the first film was released in 1992.

And the sequel was released in 1994. However..

The real life Mighty Ducks debuted in 1993. As with all modern expansion teams, the Mighty Ducks used their first pick on a goalie. Guy Hebert is as American as apple pie, yet his name was pronounced En fran├žais:

I haven't seen these movies since I was a teen. (I'm trying to convince my daughters to watch them with me. They haven't shown any interest -- yet.)  And so I completely forgot that Keenan Thompson was the 'knuckle puck' kid. (Also, you might recognize this young actor from another coming-of-age sports classic.)

The fictional Ducks goalies are unforgettable, even for a senile old man like myself. There's Goldberg of course:

Trailblazing netminder Manon Rheaume likely inspired the addition of a female goalie for the sequel. Enter Julie "the Cat" Gaffney:



I definitely had a little crush on her back in the day.

Nowadays, Colombe Jacobsen-Derstine is an accomplished chef. She's appeared on The Next Food Network Star and curated a culinary blog with recipes for healthy meals and snacks.

As mentioned in the movie, the NHL franchise is named after the movie franchise (both were owned by Disney.)

In the 1993 NHL Entry Draft, the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim used their first-ever pick (fourth overall) to select Hall of Famer Paul Kariya. He would have his own Hollywood moment a decade later.

In the Stanley Cup Final against New Jersey, Kariya was knocked out with a legal cross-ice check by Devils' captain Scott Stevens.

He would return later that period to score a dramatic goal for the Ducks.

The fictional Ducks were also captained by a Canadian. Long before starring in Dawson's Creek and Fringe, Joshua Jackson played Charlie Conway in all three films. 

Who's your favorite Mighty Duck?

Thanks for reading!


Wednesday, September 16, 2020


 Here at The 1993 I plan to mix in some longer blog entries about a team, an event, or a sports card set with some much shorter posts about a song released that year. There will be links to each of these music posts on The 1993 Playlist tab at the top of this blog.

Somewhat randomly, the first such song that came to mind is "Cannonball" by The Breeders:

I was in sixth grade when this track was in heavy rotation on MTV. Three years later I was in a high school drama class with some older girls who were discussing bands they like. I can't remember how I inserted myself into the conversation but I'm almost certain I cited Kim Deal's quote about my favorite rock star at the time, Billy Corgan:

"I want that pill he has--the one that makes him think he's so fucking important."

Granted, Billy was--and is--an egomaniac. That said, The Smashing Pumpkins had several hits by 1996 while The Breeders had just this one. I made this point to the drama club girls Devin and Christine and the skinny dark-haired girl whose name escapes me. We had always been friendly but they swatted me down hard in that moment, accusing Billy Corgan of destroying The Breeders with his misogyny and massive ego.  

I can't find any other details about Corgan's feud with Kim Deal, or how it originated, but she's far from the only rocker with whom Billy has butted heads.

Do you have any favorite singles from 1993? Any musical memories you'd like to share?

Thanks for reading and listening!


Friday, September 11, 2020

The First WTC Attack

The World Trade Center in New York City was first attacked by terrorists on February 26, 1993.

Six people were killed when a bomb detonated in a van parked in the North Tower garage. The terrorists, financed by Khalid Shaikh Mohammed and trained by al-Qaeda, had expected the South Tower to collapse as a result of the explosion. 


This attack occurred five weeks into President Bill Clinton's first term. The standoff at the Branch Davidian compound in Waco began two days later. Two years after that siege ended, an American terrorist used a truck bomb to attack the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City - the deadliest attack in American history before 9/11.

All of these events seemed to happen when I was on vacation from school. I didn't watch the news as a young teen but I caught enough to know that bad things were happening. After a while I began to feel a sense of dread, waking up on what should have been an enjoyable spring morning, and thinking - fearing - another tragic event would occur.

Nineteen years ago this morning I was standing outside a Blockbuster Video with my co-worker, waiting for the manager to arrive. Another co-worker parked her car and informed us that a plane had crashed into the World Trade Center. Based on the information she heard, it sounded like an accident. (I pictured something like the Cory Lidle crash.)

Once the manager arrived the whole staff knew it was much worse. He opened the store, turned on the DirecTV that was supposed to run ads all day, and turned on the news. We watched the second plane fly directly - deliberately - into the South Tower. We watched the smoke billow out of the towers. We watched them collapse.

Tuesday was new release day. I can remember one title in particular hit shelves on September 11, 2001: Blow.

Obviously we had far fewer customers than we would have on a normal Tuesday, though a fair amount of people walked through the doors. Most of them returned their rentals, commented on the tragedy, and left. Only one or two customers asked to rent something that day. None of us felt like doing any work, we were all mesmerized and horrified and frightened.

At around Noon my mother came by the store to pick me up and take me home. I hadn't called her and we hadn't been dismissed. My sister and nephews were in the car, she'd taken them out of school. The feeling was that if the world was going to end, we were going to be together.

The world didn't end nineteen years ago today. If it had we wouldn't have Billie Eilish or Millie Brown or Jasson Dominguez. That sense of dread I had every April in the 1990s is a near-daily occurrence now. But on this day, while my thoughts are with the victims of the World Trade Center attack and my heart breaks for their families, I am grateful for the first responders and those who protect our country from foreign terrorism.

I promise we'll have some fun topics on this blog next week. Thanks for reading.


Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Teal Explosion!!

How does the text background work for everyone? Is it too teal? If it's blinding you, let me know.

I chose a teal background for this blog because teal was everywhere in 1993. The Charlotte Hornets wore teal:


The San Jose Sharks wore teal:

And the expansion Florida Marlins wore teal:

I remember the 1993 expansion draft (which was held in 1992) mostly for the rumors surrounding the San Francisco Giants potentially moving to Tampa-St. Pete. The home run exploits of Barry Bonds and Matt Williams would have looked a lot different in that godawful tomb the Rays currently call home. But I digress.

The Marlins used their top pick on an outfield prospect named Nigel Wilson, whom the defending champion Blue Jays left unprotected. As the prize prospect of a brand new team, Wilson garnered a lot of hobby hype. I remember the excitement of ripping open packs of 1993 Donruss and pulling this Diamond Kings insert, which I've since re-acquired:

Unfortunately Wilson struggled in his big league audition. In 16 at-bats for the 1993 Marlins, Wilson struck out 11 times and didn't reach base once. He would return to the majors briefly in 1995-96, collecting three hits (including two home runs) in 19 total at-bats for a career batting average of .086.

The 1993 Marlins did have some established big leaguers on their inaugural roster, and no one was more established than their Opening Day starter, 45 year-old knuckleballer Charlie Hough.

Hough outdueled the Dodgers' Orel Hershiser, earning the victory against his former team behind a lineup that featured veterans like Benito Santiago, Walt Weiss, and Dave Magadan. Later that year, Florida would make a blockbuster trade, acquiring 1992 NL batting champion Gary Sheffield for a package of prospects. I'd never seen an expansion team in any sport acquire a superstar player so quickly. Upper Deck was quick to produce cards of Sheff on his new team, as I learned after pulling this card from a pack of 1993 SP.

In hindsight, it was a signature move by GM Dave Dombrowski to deal away the future for a franchise-altering superstar. Sheffield led the Marlins to a World Series title in 1997, while one of the prospects Trader Dave sent to San Diego ended up in the Hall of Fame.

Here's something I didn't know about the expansion Marlins: the Yankees tried to invalidate their expansion draft selections (and those of the Colorado Rockies), claiming they weren't properly compensated for the territorial rights of south Florida. The league ruled against them.

In San Jose, the Sharks followed two cellar-dwelling seasons with a playoff appearance in 1993-94, upsetting the heavily-favored Red Wings in the first round. You can read more about that series in my 1994 blog. However I should mention that the Sharks acquired their leading scorer Sergei Makarov in the summer of 1993.

Calgary dealt Makarov to Hartford, and the Whalers parlayed the future Hall of Famer into a higher draft pick that landed them Chris Pronger. Here's a subject for a future post:

On the other side of the country, the Charlotte Hornets made their playoff debut in 1993. NBA fans were buzzin' about the ascendant squad led by Larry Johnson, Alonzo Mourning, and Muggsy Bogues. 

The Hornets and their first round opponents were polar opposites. The Boston Celtics' history and tradition were unmatched by any NBA franchise, but their run of fourteen consecutive winning seasons was coming to an end. Larry Bird had retired the year before, Robert Parish was pushing 40, and Kevin McHale called it a career immediately after Charlotte eliminated the C's in four games.

Who's your favorite teal team? Did you have any jerseys or other teal-colored clothes in your wardrobe?

Thanks for reading!


Monday, September 7, 2020

We are 1993

Welcome to The 1993!

If you've followed my flagship blog The Collector you've no doubt read at least one of my posts celebrating a sports card set released in 1993. It was a magical year for the hobby - and a magical year in a lot of other arenas. It was the year I became a teenager, which likely explains my affinity for the music and entertainment of said year.

The 1993 sets and sports seasons have a wealth of topics to discuss and explore. There are so many things I want to share and learn and remember.

And so on 9/3 of 2020 I decided to start a second blog, where I could explore sports cards, sets, moments, songs, TV shows, and anything else that entered the world in 1993. (Victoria Justice, how you doin'?)

 Upon further review, this Joey Tribiani gif is ineligible. Friends debuted in 1994 :/


You might be wondering why this blog is called The 1993. I chose this name for two reasons. It seemed like a lot of topics would start that way. For instance: the 1993 Upper Deck baseball set, the 1993 Stanley Cup Finals, the 1993 World Series (both won by Canadian teams!) and the 1993-94 SP basketball set - which is a topic I wanted to explore long before conceiving the idea for a 1993-specific blog.

Also, it works well for The 1975.

I'm looking forward to reminiscing about 1993 with all of you, and I hope you'll share some of your memories and favorites of that glorious year in sports, sports cards, and pop culture.


Thanks for reading!