It was a different kind of box-opening experience, as my usual m.o. is to plow right through it, with cellophane and wrappers flying all over the room, but this one required a little extra time. The usual card separation and organization would have to wait.
I'm not sure how everyone else does it. Some may open, scan, type, and score one pack at a time, but I simply don't have the patience for that. I opened all my packs at once, but placed the contents of each pack back in the wrapper, which went back into the box, so the order of pack opening may have changed but the contents of each pack did not. The only one I was careful to keep in the same pack-opening position was pack 24, which actually was the last pack I opened in the box. I just thought it was cool that the biggest pack of the break was actually saved until the very end, even for me when I broke the actual box.
Also, I wasnt to give a big thank you to Spankee at My Cardboard Mistress, who put together a Gint-A-Cuffs V Excel scoresheet. This was how I kept score while tabulating my points, and it allowed me to check my work after the full break was completed, to make sure I got all my points. (There were also a couple other GAC participants who pointed out some errors in my first-grade-level math skills as I went along, so thanks also to Greg Z. and Chris R.)
My box gave me 200 points, which I was VERY happy with. We'll have to see how everyone else's boxes turn out, before getting too excited. Last year's winner and runner-up had 209 and 207 points, respectively, so according to that scale, I would have gotten third place, at most. Still, I got some GREAT cards, and had a lot of fun, so regardless of what happens, it was a great experience overall.
Of course, the highlight for me was pulling the rip card. Up until this point, over the years, I have opened two hobby boxes of 2008, four of 2010, three of 2012, and one of 2013 earlier this month, without pulling a single one, so after all these years and dollars put into the product, it was nice to finally pull my first rip card.
Anyway, here's a proper box break summary, to give a comprehensive look at all the minis, inserts, and hits, just in case anybody is interested in anything:
SPS: Matt Kemp, Buster Posey, Stephen Strasburg, Justin Morneau, Nolan Ryan, Paul Molitor, John Kruk, Hal Hewhouser, Wilin Rosario, Brandon, McCarthy, Johan Santana, Chase Headley
Minis: Hanley Ramirez, Jose Fernandez, Kyle Seager, Olivia Culpo, Bill Mazeroski, Babe Ruth, Pedro Alvarez, Julia Mancuso, Coray Hart, Ken Griffey Jr., Marco Scutaro, Roy Halladay
A&G Back Minis: McKayla Maroney, Shawn Nadelen, Jayson Werth, Jason Motte
No-Number Mini: Dan Uggla
Black-Bordered Mini: Nick Swisher, Frank Robinson
Heavy Hangs the Head: Alexander I
Peacemakers: Jane Addams
Codes, Ciphers, & Cryptographs: Linear A, Kryptos
Across the Years: Ted Williams, Carlos Gonzalez, Roy Halladay, Jay Bruce, Jose Altuve, Tyler Skaggs, Willie Mays, Ryan Braun, Mariano Rivera, Evan Longoria, Cal Ripken Jr. R.A. Dickey
Civilizations of Ages Past: Byzantine, Greeks, Persians
Martial Mastery: Spartans, Samurai, Gladiators
Palaces & Strongholds: Alhambra, Topkapi Palace, Peterhof Palace
One Little Corner: Moon, Neptune, Scattered Disc
Hits: Cecil Fielder Bat, Jason Dufner Shirt, C.J. Wilson Rip Card 37/50 (Ripped), Roberto Clemente EXT SSP (Pulled From Rip Card)
That's it for this particular box. Of course, the thrill for me was to FINALLY pull a rip card after all these years, but even regardless of that, Allen & Ginter is always a fun product to open. As always, if anyone is interested in anything, just let me know, although I am going to wait until I collate my set before I put my SPs up for trade. The Puig mini and the Clemente are both on Ebay right now, but are still up for trade, as well, by the way, just in case anyone has something really good to offer.