2021: Gotta Have Goals (136/302)
2021. In the words of 70's pop singer Barry Manilow "It looks like we made it." Like nearly every one I am elated to see 2020 pass into the dustbin of history. I cannot wait to get back out into the world again as soon as it is safe to do so, hopefully by summer. Aside from seeing family and whatnot, my biggest hope is that I will get back to the local gaming pub and finally sling spells in person once more. Thank God for Whereby, but I do miss in-person Magic mightily. Here's to all the doctors, scientists, and front line workers who have worked tirelessly to get us through this madness and back to normal.
It's hard to believe that I started this blog all the way back in January of 2019. I had just gotten back into Magic about a month earlier after over 20 years out of the game and decided to start collecting a complete set of Unlimited Edition. I knew then that it would be an arduous, multi-year quest. Since then I have managed to get 136 of the 302 cards I will need. I still must acquire 15 commons, 52 uncommons, and 99 rares. An arduous task indeed. That being said I have managed to get Chaos Orb, some solid uncommons like Control Magic and Berserk, and three dual lands. That's right: I have added a third dual land to my collection!
This exceptionally beautiful Scrubland comes to me by way of my friend and fellow Akron Legionnaire Matt. He was looking to unload it and he was kind enough to offer me first dibs. Amicable terms were agreed upon and a socially distanced transaction was conducted. He knows I will treasure it as I do all my cards and I know that he will use the proceeds from the deal to get some sort of wonderfully spicy goodness to use in duels. Everyone is a winner.
This third dual land brings me to my Magic goals for 2021. I am a planner by nature and it helps me to have measurable goals going into each year, whether they be fitness goals, financial goals, career goals, or most importantly Magic goals. I would say that my main goal is to get as many Unlimited cards as possible, however I have encountered a wonderful little side project that will force me to divert some (a lot) resources this year: Alpha 40.
The Hill Giant is the very first Magic card I remember and I got this Alpha version over the summer. Fittingly it is the first card from that set I've ever had. This nice Disintegrate originally belonged to my friend and fellow Akron Legionnaire Sean. When I told him I was starting to get interested in Alpha he let me know that he had some cards and offered me a very fair price for this epic burn spell. Another socially distanced Old School transaction was accomplished within our group. Thanks guys.
Why in God's name would I endeavor to start buying Alpha cards in the middle of collecting a set of Unlimited? Because when I got that Hill Giant I looked at it like it was the one ring. It seemed so exotic and unattainable to me. The first time I sat down and played with Sean and Matt when they were using their own Alpha decks I was taken aback in awe of these odd rounded corner cards. Even in spring of 1994 you never saw these...at least I didn't. I got Sean's Disintegrate, bought 3 Mountains, and got another solid Legionnaire deal from Matt on 3 Ironclaw Orcs and now I am 20% of the way to a cool mono-red Alpha 40 deck. Which brings me back to my Magic goals for 2021:
1. Finish all of the Unlimited commons and uncommons
2. Complete a janky Alpha 40 deck
3. Get another "second tier" Unlimited card (dual land, Time Vault, Guantlet of Might, etc.)
This should put me in a great position to start working my way through the remaining 99 rares in 2022 and hopefully have some power by the end of next year. Whatever happens or doesn't happen I know I will continue to enjoy playing and collecting. Goals shouldn't be a source of pressure but rather an inspiration and a way to focus oneself. In this case I am making goals related to my beloved hobby, and I know that I will enjoy every minute of Magic in 2021...it was one of the main reasons I somehow stayed sane throughout that calamitous year 2020.
Happy New Year everyone, may you and yours be happy, healthy, and safe. Peace.