name: Allan Dodd
Where do I begin with Wacky Packs.. of course - first of all - THANKS, GREG, FOR THE GREAT SITE!.. ok, with that out of the way, I'll be 40 in a couple weeks, so I was a perfect 9 years old and in 3rd grade when I first came across WP's in 1973. I grew up and went to school in Long Beach, Calfornia, and didn't recall seeing these until I saw them in a drug store. Picked up a pack that had CAP'N CRUD and PUTRID CAT CHOW in it and I was hooked (God bless series 2!). From there, the memories just fly..
.. Once school started that year, an ice cream truck started pulling up alongside the park that stood across the street from my little elementary school. WP's were the highlite, and everybody - and I mean EVERYBODY, from 1st to 6th grade, made a mad dash for that ice-cream truck to get the latest wackys. The school got so concerned about this mad dash of kids crossing the street that the banned the ice-cream truck.. so he just stared pulling up on the OTHER side of the park across from the school. We found him ;).. so, kids now ran across the street AND through the park to get to the truck. The school finally gave up and let him pull up alongside the school so we wouldn't be risking getting ran over in our mad dash for Wacky Packages...
... that same year, I now have nightmares picturing the bookcovers on my books that year.. before the free bookcovers we got from Baskin-Robbins (you know the ones, with silly pictures representing each of the 31 flavors) were the cat's meow... but NOW, we all put those covers on backswards, with the white backside showing.. and PLASTERED them with Wacky Packages. How I (and everybody else in my classroom) wish I still had those that I put all over those bookcovers (or atleast had saved the bookcovers!)..
... later that year, my older sister and I cought a nasty case of strep throat and were genuinely, really sick instead of the typical 'sick' little kids stuff. After going to the doctor for pennicillin and prescriptions, we stopped off to get the prescriptions filled at a local pharmacy (remember those? Yes, Virginia.. there actually WERE pharmacies not named WALGREENS or REXALL once upon a time!). Mom felt sorry for us, and asked if we could find anything we'd like while waiting forever for the medicinal prescriptions to be filled. We found Wacky's, and must have done a good job of begging, as our mom bought an entire box for us to split. Upon getting home and tearing through them, we each got a complete set - of the until-then useen Series 4! We were back in school the next week, and we were the first kids to have Series 4! Oh, the trade offers (I remember one deal I didn't make - 5 Run Tony Shells for my 1 Gatorade from Series 4.. I wouldn't make the deal because I didn't have a duplicate, and absolutely LOVED the 'Creature from the Black Lagoon' on the sticker!)...
... by the next year, however, the buzz was gone, the ice cream truck didn't stop by anymore, and wacky's were all but forgotten. I stil found them here and there, a pack here and a pack there, but time marched on, girls got less icky, the tentacled, acid spewing monster that is Algebra found it's way into the majority of my previously-free time, and my golden era was no more. I found the 91 Wacky's, and was disgusted by what they had turned into. With the new series, however, I have hope for a renaissance! Some aren't so great, but some are brilliant, and quite a few would have fit well in the original classic run! Here's hoping Topps has a monster hit with these and continues the run for awhile! Though times have changed - this soon-to-be 40 year old IT specialist with a wife and 11 month old son turns into the same 9 year old kid with nothing more on his mind than these silly cards and what time 'Frankenstein Meets The Wolf Man' or 'Ghidrah the 3-Headed Monster' is on this weekend, when I look at the few I've reaquired and take a trip back to those great little throwaway stickers. Let the other '2nd childhood' guys go chase after Ferrari's or girls half their age.. I'll stick with Wacky's - and thanks to home video, I'll watch the Wolfman and Ghidrah any time I feel like poppsing in the tape or DVD ;)
Peace, brothers and sisters!
date: 7:14 am - Monday, June 7, 2004