A few months ago I went to a yard sale and found an entire box of Desert Storm trading cards for $1.25. I couldn't believe my eyes. I hadn't seen or thought about those cards in years. I remember, for no good reason, buying some as a kid and being less than thrilled with the results.
Cut to twenty years later and I decided to open one of the packs and see if they were more interesting now that I am adult. I am opening the pack, scanning, and commenting as I go. Here's hoping they are at least entertaining.
|#134 Conserving Energy|
OK. The first card out of the pack and it is not some sort of missile or tank. I got a light bulb and the exiting action of not doing something. Wow.
The cards reads:
Dependence on oil from the Persian Gulf can be reduced by conserving energy. Some simple energy saving steps include keeping tires inflated to recommended pressure, shutting fir place vents, closing curtains during summer and opening them during winter, and changing or cleaning furnace/air conditioner filters regularly.
You know what makes trading cards fun? Lectures on tire pressure and furnace filters. Off to a lousy start.
|#24 Islamic Republic of Iran|
Oh boy! A map. I can at least so why this card is in the deck. I would wager dollars to donuts that most kids/adults collecting these cards had no idea where Kuwait, Iran, Saudi Arabia or any place in the Middle East actually was. The back features all the pertinent facts about Iran. Still doesn't make for that interesting of a card.
|#92 Canadian System|
The card reads:
Courtesy takes many forms in the U.S. military. The most noticeable military courtesy is the salute to a superior officer. When saluting, assume the position of attention, have thumb and fingers extended and joined, keep hand and wrist unbent, incline the forearm at 45 degrees, hold upper arm horizontal, bring heels together,and look squarely at the person being saluted. In general, do not salute when at work indoors, guarding prisoners or under battle conditions.
This card isn't really about courtesy at all. This card is about saluting. Why not have the card say saluting???? I was going to go a rant here but, being the courteous sort, I will just give this card the one finger salute, politely of course.
|#104 U.S. Constitution|
I can see the point of this card. The U.S. Constitution is the end all, be all of American living. I am just tired of getting vague ideas, maps, pieces of paper and lectures. The 12 year old in me in getting bored very quickly. I want weapons and I want things to explode.
|#203 AMX-30 Tank|
I finally get a weapon and it's a French tank? I guess I cannot complain too much. At least it blows stuff up real good.
The card reads:
The AMX-30 main battle tank, made by the French, was used by both coalition and Iraqi forces during Operation Desert Storm. It carries a crew of 4 and has an infrared light system for night operations. Designed in the late 1960s, it has 1 105mm gun and a turret-mounted 7.62mm machine gun.
Sounds kind of kick-ass. This is the first kind of cool card in the pack so far.
|#72 Sheik Jaber Al-Ahmed Al-Sabah|
The Emir of Kuwait card. He was an important player in the war. Let's have Pro Set teach us some facts about Sheik Jaber Al-Ahmed Al-Sabah:
Becoming the emir of Kuwait in 1977, Sheik al-Sabah is the 13th ruler of his nation's Sabah dynasty. He began his career as Kuwait's first minister of finance. In 1965, he became prime minister, then crown price and heir apparent in 1966. Kuwait supported Iraq during the Iran-Iraq War. The emir escaped a suicide car bomber's attack in May 1985. The emir and his people were jubilant the day the coalition forces liberated Kuwait, Feb. 27, 1991.
The Sheik died January 15, 2006 at the age of 79. The last two cards have been better, or at least more war-like. Let's hope the streak continues.
|#161 Health & Hygiene|
The streak is over. There is nothing that gets my patriotic juices flowing more than a canteen, a towel, a mirror, a razor, and some deodorant. I think it's time for us to be amazed about all the things that health & hygiene do for the United States Armed Forces:
Soldiers in the field learn quickly that staying clean keeps them in fighting shape. A clean pair of socks every day and proper bathing wards off athlete's foot, trench foot, and other painful conditioning. Underclothing loses its insulating qualities after use and must be changed. Combat soldiers often use their helmets as a basin to sponge bathe and have orders to brush their teeth at least once a day. Cleanliness and health add up to top performance ever day.
Did my mom write this card? I love spending money on trading cards only to be reminded that that I need to bathe. Thumbs down.
|#76 John Major|
Another key player in the war, so there is that. Too bad he looks like a very polite accountant or your uncle. I really don't feel like typing the information on the back of this card. I am growing bored with this cards and Google exists in case you really want to know about John Major or John Mayer.
|#190 USNS Hospital Ship (TAH)|
The last card in the deck is a hospital ship. The card states that it is also a fighting ship. Let's learn how fighting this ship really is:
There are 2 U.S. Navy hospital ships in Arabian waters. Both the USNS Comfort (TAH-20) and the USNS Mercy (TAH-19) have approximately 1,000 beds and 12 operating rooms (ORs) The Comfort's home port is Baltimore, MD, and the Mercy is out of Oakland, CA. The medical staffs of these ships are augmented by personnel from naval hospitals on both coasts of the United States.
Doesn't sound too scary to me. This sounds like the opening scene of show new show coming this fall to the CBS Network. It's a cross between M*A*S*H* and The Love Boat. The cast stars your favorite washed up actors from the 1980s.
I am really disappointed with the lack of things exploding in this set. The only weapons I got were a French tank and a hospital ship. They really needed to make this more exciting. Maybe every fifth pack should have randomly exploded. Maybe some packs could have been filled with genuine Kuwait sand. They could have had a contest where Pro Set gave the winner a Scud missile. That would have been awesome. These cards are not awesome.
I cannot believe how tired I am. These cards sucked the joy out of me. I would like to go back to 1991 and give myself a hi-five for not continuing to collect these war "prizes".