Sorting January…

Look at this picture:

What do you think it is a picture of?

Don’t know?

Look at this then:

Still no clue?

Well, the first is a picture of the actual sky on midday.

The second is a grey square I made myself in paint… Yep, January in Denmark has a very eerie resemblance of a grey square made in Paint.

This is one of the reasons why I have a strong dislike… no screw it, this is my blog and I don’t need to sugarcoat things: this is one of the reasons why I hate January!

I do, I really do. Actually, I think it is one of the only things/inventions/concepts/contraptions I really hate. Who the hell invented this?!

Maybe it is because of its inevitability. It is so very difficult to escape January. It always hits so sudden after a long month of celebrations and cozy being together with friends and family; I almost always get hit by the January Plague – most years it is the only sick days I have; Work is crazy; and from January 1, my inbox is always filled with bills.

Oh! and the weather is crappy or at least wet, cold and grey 24/7.

So there is all that, could we at least rejoice at January being a very short month? No! It takes forever! Why is January always at least 16% longer than any other month? It makes no sense. There is simply no remedying facts to ease my hatred toward this disastrous month.

January 2022

As I have already mentioned, this year’s edition of the monat horribilis (I thought a mix of German and Latin was suiting) started out great with a positive Corona test on my son, just to kick things off. At least we were all out of isolation after a week (and with no symptoms whatsoever). Nevertheless, right as we were about to look ahead to February, my son was hit by some very nasty stomach flu, that has now spread to my daughter. You know the drill – at least you probably do, if you have kids – it is the entire shebang! Nightly vomiting with all the following running around at 2am to change sheets; unbelievably, unspeakable, otherworldly, nasty things in the diaper; general discomfort and a whole lot of understandable whining. January just got a week or two longer!

I would really like to be on Bali right now…

With that out of the question (thank you finances, Covid, work), I thought to myself: “What is almost as soothing as 10 days at a pool in 25 degrees sunny weather with great food, no responsibilities and no illness?” Well, seeing as you are here, you probably already guessed it: It resorted to sorting cards…

Sorting out the sorting

As we all know, there are several different schools of sorting cardboard:

There is the complete chaos, just throwing all the cards into a box or bag and trying to remember the inventory in your head. This method has the unfortunate side effect, that you will probably lose cards of tremendous value at some point.

Then there is sorting every card according to color/edition/rarity/worth/whatever and putting them into boxes.

And then there is the possibility of putting all cards into binders, following some sorting logic as well.

Up until now, I have been somewhere in between. I have had my most expensive cards assembled in a quad4 binder (sorted after color only, with P12 and restricted deliciousness in the first two pages) and the rest stashed away in different boxes, sorted color-wise.

This is my current setup:

Yep, ready with whiskey, chocolate and my Old School Spotify playlist featuring songs with the same names as OS cards.

However, I am not too happy with this way of doing things. It has a number of disadvantages, first and foremost that I don’t have a very good overview; second that the logic is sometimes off and a bit confusing, for example when I have 3 Beta Paralyze (in the cheap box) and 2 Alpha Paralyze in the binder. Also: I often build and rebuild decks, and it is not always very logical which cards are in the box and which are in the binder – and finally, I really need to do something to not get crazy by this stupid month’s extraordinary length.

Cards in boxes have some advantages: boxes take up less space; it is easier to add new cards – even if they are alphabetically ordered; and it is fast to stash away cards in boxes, when breaking up the latest, non-working brew. The major disadvantage is that it is not as easy to get an overview of what you actually have, as when the cards are in a binder. Also, when using a box, you risk damaging the first and last card when closing the box, and if it is too stuffed, you also risk damaging some edges when trying to get the cards out.

Binders are easy to handle, they give you a great overview of which cards you have.

A quad4 binder can hold 480 cards. I currently own two binders, but I have no idea how many cards I have. I guess I will find out. And you will too, if you read on, on this, my epic odyssey into sorting my Old School collection…

Methodology

Quite the cliffhanger, huh?

Anyway, I want to keep my P12 and Restricted show-off pages (primarily because I almost always use some of these cards when building decks). But other than that, how to sort these things?

Alphabetically is too much of a hassle, and I don’t own that many cards, so the hassle isn’t really worth it. I most certainly want to order the cards by color, but also rarity? Nah, that makes no sense. I am not a collector, I am a player, and thus the rarity of a specific card isn’t really that important to me. Same with sets and editions, they don’t matter.

Colors – maybe some logic with creatures together etc. Binders. Check

I started out pouring out all my cards on my table, sorting them into different colors and removing extras (I kept some extras: You never know when you need Mishra’s Factory 5-8 or Fellwar Stone 5-8, Fireball, Lightning Bolt, Sol Ring etc.).

I found out, I have the following amount of cards:

P12 and Show-off: 24

Lands: 78

Artifacts: 138

Multicolor: 13

Blue: 201

Black: 115

Green: 128

Red: 109

White: 84

No biggies there. It seems to be rather equally distributed, except I don’t have a lot of white cards – and I do have a lot of Blue. But we all know, that Blue is the best color, and who wants to play White anyway??

Counting all of them, it totals 890. Great! Two binders can hold 960 cards, so we should be good right? Well, not necessarily. Because I don’t want to stash all the cards too close, because I am quite certain I will buy more cards in the future. So it is going to be tight!

And yes: One card too many! Well. I will have to buy another binder at some point anyway, but for now, I am just thrilled that I have managed to get a much better overview over my cards, and that I protect them better than before.

Wrap-up

There you have it. A completely irrelevant post, I guess, but now you know how my cards are sorted (sort of). At least for a years’ time. January has an evil tendency to reappear at the exact time, where you have almost forgot how much of a terror it is.

As I keep telling myself and my surroundings a lot these days: Spring is almost here

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