As the footy season starts to wind down, I was watching a game the other day thinking about my memories of footy as a kid.
I was never actually any good at footy, so there were no memories of winning junior premierships or anything like that. Instead I got to thinking about collecting footy cards.
Footy card season, as it used to be referred to at my primary school, was a massive deal. Well massive, like most fads you went through as a kid, in that it was huge for about six weeks and then suddenly it disappeared.
For those weeks though, kids would bring ever expanding piles of footy cards, held together with rubber bands, to school each day. Throughout the day trades, of varying levels of “fairness”, took place, all in the name of trying to collect the full set.
Footy cards back then were pretty basic. There wasn’t all the different and rare cards you get these days. There were no gold foil sets, signature or Brownlow predictors cards, just a basic team set and an emblem card for each team.
I think the quality control, behind what cards went into a pack, was a whole lot more lax back in the eighties. These days the odds of getting a certain type of card are clearly listed on the back of the pack and packs appear to stick to these odds. Back then it was nothing to get a couple of exactly the same card or, if you were extremely lucky, a couple of emblems in the same pack.
Whilst today’s footy cards leave the cards we collected as kids for dead, there’s one thing that’s changed that’s definitely not for the better? That is taking out the chewing gum!
Back in the eighties, every footy card pack had a strip of Wrigleys chewing gum in it. In hindsight perhaps wasn’t great for the cards, but it added a whole new element to the ritual of opening a pack of footy cards.
I read somewhere that your sense of smell is tied closely to you memory and I reckon it’s spot on when it comes to footy cards! The smell of Wrigleys chewing gum takes me straight back to collecting footy cards when I was a kid.
So that was footy card season, a six week period where the school playground revolved around footy cards. Let us know below what what you remember about footy card season or what other “seasons” your school playground went through?