Saturday, February 26, 2011


So yeah, I don't usually post at 6:50 on a Saturday morning.

But it seems appropriate, since that is the time and place where I first met these cards.

The back of a box of Frosted Flakes was pretty much my bible when I was a kid. I'd prop an elbow on the breakfast table, dig a fist into my cheek, and read from top to bottom, doing my level best to divine secret meanings between sugar rushes.

Usually the text would be a description of the giveaway in the box. Wind this up, dip that in water, wear this around your neck, slip that onto your finger...

In the summer of 1970, the box made a wondrous claim: Free inside! Autographed “3-D” baseball cards.

There was probably fine print somewhere that explained that these were facsimile autographs, but the quotes around “3-D” seem gratuitous. The illusion of depth created by the blurred backgrounds and plastic overlays was really quite impressive.

The cards were produced by Xograph, the same company that had printed the wildly elusive 1968 Topps 3D test set, and they sat in the bottom of the box in an opaque paper wrapper.

The intent of the packaging was probably for kids to pour out the card with the last bowl of cereal in the box. But of course we pushed up our pajama sleeves and thrust our skinny arms into full boxes, scraping blindly along the bottom until we had our prize.

Kellogg's released a new “3-D” set each year through to the mid '80s (except for 1973, when they distributed a more traditional “flat” set), and some of those designs were quite strong. But I think the 1970 set might be my favorite.

Because you never really forget your first...

1 comment:

  1. One day I hope to collect the Kellogg's sets. This is a real nice card. Seems like cracking and rounding were always big problems with these cards. At least the centering was usually better than Topps...