I've always loved shiny things, the shinier, the better. I love art, I love drawing, and most importantly I've always loved collecting. I was 12 I think when I got my first ever booster pack of trading cards, a Jungle pack, in which I pulled a holo error Jolteon, a card I still have in my collection today.
With the internet still a luxury (imagine that) and with the connection at home still on a 33.3kps dial up, I really had no idea what cards were worth, nor what they were. Frankly, I didn't have a clue what I was getting myself into.
My goal back then was similar to our dear faiarrow's - I wanted a copy of every single card made. But as sets were released and as I didn't have any pocket money given to me (only birthday and Christmas money) well... collecting a whole set of cards was but a pipe dream. At this point, I had no idea of the existence of Mew cards.
One day, I brought a copy of Beckett Pokémon magazine and it had a TCG catalogue in the back. It was there that I gained my first real insight into the TCG world. I learned about promo's, I learned about Japanese cards, and most importantly of all, I discovered the existence of the black star promo 8 Mew, the first English promo of Mew. Along with that, I discovered Lilypad Mew, Ancient Mew, and one of the five holy grails of the TCG world (and said to be the rarest card of all with an estimated 4 in existence in the WORLD) - Pikachu Illustrator. That magazine became the catalyst that would drive me to eventually start this insanity.
My goals were remarkably different then. I still had the goal of collecting a copy of every single card, but eventually I lost sight of that goal just before Neo 1 was released. My passion never wavered, but I saw little hope given my non-existent allowance. Ah money, why art thou a heartless bitch?
With high school taking away my time and my passion for Pokémon diverted elsewhere, my goals and dreams were shelved for the next 5 years.
One day in 2006, I heard about generation 4 being released and decided to check it out. I'm not sure what it was exactly that rebooted my passion for Pokémon, but I remember picking up my old binder and flicking through the cards I had spent so many long hours collecting.
I remembered that there was so much that I had left unfinished, and leaving something unfinished is something I really hate. With money now in my possession and my knowledge of the existence of awesome things like e-bay and live journal, I began collecting again.
I started by buying all those pretty holographic cards I had never pulled from booster packs, or drooled over in my friends binders (Cardhaus.com, I will miss you and I love you long time) but the one card I had always wanted, that damn English Mew promo... well, now that I had money, why not buy it?
So I did. I got the holographic version. I can't remember where I got the non-holo version from, but I had obtained it before I stopped collecting, but being a lover of holo cards, I wanted the shiny version!
The day I got that card, I think, was the day when I decided I wanted the others.
It was the same day I got the English lilypad mew, too, since I got all of the American black star promo's in a lot. But ultimately, I started to want them all after I joined this com.
I saw everyone else's fantastic collections and I wanted my own. I didn't do plush, I didn't do figures, but I love, love, LOVE cards, so why not a card collection?
And thus, my Mew collection was born.
I brought as many cards as I could find off of E-bay, here and even dabbled in Yahoo!Auctions (never. Again. >( ) before I got in contact with some absolutely amazing sellers on Ebay who had some shops outside of it. Eventually, I got every single card available at the time on the 8th of July, 2008.
Except for two of them.
I had um'ed and uh'ed about the Trainer cards with mew on them for a while now, on whether or not I wanted to add them to my collection, and decided to put them in the back of my mind. There were two trophy level trainers out there that featured Mew: Victory Orb Mew and Championship Arena (Mew vs Celebi print).
I thought I had got Mew vs Celebi once, but unfortunately for me, the seller was a scammer and I never got the card (I got my money back). If anything, it put me off trying to find this elusive card, and it definitely put me off trying for Victory Orb, given how much that thing is ($1500+ normally)
So, I bided my time, and I waited.
Fast forward four years to now. Every now and then I searched for my missing trainer trophies... and then one day, a wild Victory Orb Mew auction appeared! (ironically, THREE appeared in the same week!) And it was perfect because it was out of its case, which I preferred.
Cue a week of me fussing over whether or not to get this card. After all, it was $375 (at current exchange rates, go powerful Aussie dollar! :D )... not only that, but I was incredibly nervous that it would be a fake, that the seller would scam me, and all of the things that you generally feel whenever you go for a Grail.
Well, it seems the seller sensed my anxiety, because not only did they spend about $50 on shipping this one tiny card (I paid $8), they packaged it so well it took me about ten minutes to get into the package. And of course, the rest is history, no?
With my faith restored in purchasing a Grail, I went to track my other grail. Unlike Victory Orb (which was nearly always on E-bay, though at ridiculous prices), Championship Arena was nowhere to be found.
I searched, and I searched. I put up a wanted ad on a forum once with no response. I began to lose hope. I knew of one that existed on Collectors Cashe, but I was hoping against hope that I'd find it cheaper somewhere else.
After some encouragement fromlovedbyahero in the AIM chat pkmncollectors, I decided to do another (in my mind, fruitless) search for Sir Elusive. A few months ago I had joined the PokeGym forums after seeing how popular it was, and I posted there again for the card after having no luck on E-bay or the other shops.
Literally five minutes later, I had a PM from a user called Jason who had BOTH cards, the English and the Japanese versions.
The conversation went as follows:
Me: HOLY SHIT
Me: SOMEONE HAS BOTH JAPANESE AND ENGLISH STADIUM CARDS
Me: AND THEY ARE OPEN TO PRICES
Me: *HEAD EXPLODES*
lovedbyahero: on AU eBay?
Me: HONEY, THIS IS THE CARD I WAS TALKING TO YOU ABOUT BEFORE.
Me: MY FUCKING GRAIL.
Me: And no elsewhere
Me: I'm waiting for their response
Me: HNNNNNG I MIGHT FINALLY GET THIS CARD T_T
The tension was immense (and I think I scared the crap out of several chatee's with my swearing and rants during the exchange) and after several back and forth PM's with this member, I brought the Japanese card. The two cards are identical, so I only need one to complete the set.
Or so I always thought.
Turns out the Japanese card is holographic, and the English one is not. You know what that means, right?
Unfortunately the seller didn't want to part with their English card, so I ended up caving and got the one off Collector's Cashe.
But it wasn't over until the cards were in my hands. I was still sore from the auction where I won this card before, after all. And today, you can guess what arrived in the mail.
I finally got it. I finally got the last cards.
It's over. It's finally over. I now own, for real, a copy of every single Mew card in existence today.
I will be posting about my new collection website as soon as it's up so you can view every single one of my pretties at your leasure. Until then, here is all of my scans on my Photobucket account. ^^