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PostPosted: Sat Mar 12, 2011 11:24 am 
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Joined: Thu Jun 19, 2008 7:16 pm
Posts: 1340
Location: St. Louis, MO
I just wanted to welcome our newest forum member, and a longtime Cracker Jack friend, Jeffery Maxwell! Even from the jungle, he managed to find us, and register! Welcome Jeffrey!!!

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 13, 2011 7:26 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2008 6:47 pm
Posts: 1170
Location: Westland, Michigan
Wow, welcome Jeffrey :!: It is so nice to have you here. So, what's the weather like in your neighborhood today? Here in Detroit it is currently 34 degrees. Not bad for the big annual St. Patrick's Day Parade today. 4c

We are happy to have you here in our CJCA neighborhood. :D

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2011 2:23 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 01, 2008 12:58 am
Posts: 1169
Hi, Jeffrey :hiya:

Hope everything with you and your current life in the jungle is going just grand! Nice to see you are still interested in this fantastic hobby! :D
CJAAAJ :nutty:

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2011 4:25 pm 

Joined: Thu Mar 10, 2011 11:48 pm
Posts: 122
Hello Luke, Diane, Alex! AND everyone in the CJCA! Greetings to all from Tarapoto, Peru.

Wow, what a great thing to run across this post this afternoon! Thanks to everyone for the warm welcome to the CJCA forum. I tell everyone, "You will never find a better group of collectors than the members of the Cracker Jack Collectors Association." I will always treasure the time I spent with you at conventions, talking by phone and email, and trading by mail. The conventions that Diane was able to attend with me are among the most memorable times we had together, and even though she was not a collector, she always thought of you as friends.

I never lost interest in Cracker Jack. I am just taking a break for awhile as I hang out in the Amazon Rainforest for a few years where we don't have Cracker Jack. Selling the bulk of my collection at the CJCA Convention in 2006 was a high point for me. The buzz that it created made as much of an impact on me as the serious cash I raised to start my new adventure. You might be interested to know that the one thing I did not offer for sale was my collection of Type I Alphabet Animals. What else would the "Alphabet King" keep? They are stored at my parent's farm in Kansas. Would it be any surprise to anyone who knows me that I still have two box trailers full of other collections that I didn't have time to sell? Anyone need a quarter million bubblegum cards or the largest collection in the world of vintage Walco Bead Company craft sets?

I cannot tell you how pleased I was to find the other day that Kent Sprecher of Toy Soldier HQ gave me credit for my studies on Alphabet Animals and the four "types" I identified on his prize and premiums page at http://www.angelfire.com/biz/toysoldierhq/Premiums.html. I am very happy that my terminology is being accepted in other collecting circles. I am in debt to CJCA for preserving my website. NOSCO flats will continue to be a lifelong study for me.

Speaking of Websites, you might check out the articles I wrote this year for English language Wikipedia on prizes and premiums:
Prize (marketing) is at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prize_(marketing) and is my favorite article I have written for Wikipedia.
Premium (marketing) is at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Premium_(marketing)

You might have noticed that I was a little bored (and a lot homesick) yesterday when I replied to a number of posts on the CJCA IS IT OR ISN'T IT forum. One of my favorite things in the world is identifying plastic. Another memorable CJ moment for me was when, by Ann's invitation, Alex and I did the first "Fake Forum" at the Second CJCA Convention in Chicago in 1996. I am glad that the format has survived and grown through the conventions and now the website as "Is it or isn't it?" Whether a collector is a CJ purist, also collects CJ look-alikes, or also collects a wide variety outside of CJ, it is good to know what is what, so we can make informed decisions about what we choose to collect. And as we have discovered, there are a lot of different views from various experiences and expertise that contribute to make a consensus. And we have also seen consensus in some areas off collecting change over time.

So what am I doing now? Because Meche and I own and run two convenience stores here, naturally I have easy access to snack products that come with prizes inside. In fact, South America seems to be having a boom in snack prizes at this time. I am having a blast collecting injection-molded plastic Star Wars toys, mini dinosaurs, tiny soccer players, licensed cartoon character mini spoons, and put-together spinners that come in chocolates; tokens, pogs, tattoos, and stickers from bags of Frito-Lay and other brands of chips; and a number of similar free in-package items from cookies, candy and gum. I am sticking to small items, what Ron calls "shoebox toys", so it won't be difficult to transport my collection if I decide to move back home sometime in the future.

Meche is not sure what to think about all this, because "collecting" is new to her. Collecting is not something people do here, they don't get it at all. We found that a new chicken restaurant around the corner from our house called Pollito's Park has a kids' menu where the meals come with toys. It is the only family restaurant of it's kind in the jungle that has a modern playground like a McDonald's. We go there every Sunday evening to order two kids meals so I can add to my new collection of Gogo's Crazy Bones. What fun! Now they know me as the big gringo who collects the little plastic toys. They think I must be nuts.

I probably am.

Thanks again, and I will look forward to talking to all of you again soon.
Best Regards,
and most importantly
HAVE FUN!
Jeffrey Maxwell, a/k/a Alphabet26


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 24, 2011 8:36 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 01, 2008 6:45 pm
Posts: 688
Hi Jeffrey,

Great to hear from you - sounds like you get to be the kid in the candy store quite often literally! LOL!

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 2011 2:56 pm 

Joined: Thu Mar 10, 2011 11:48 pm
Posts: 122
Thanks Gail!

I have a great place to play (and sometimes work) everyday. But I certainly have not lost any weight. ;) My interest in this stuff is probably why I have one of the best packaged candy retail stores in the jungle. On Saturday and Sunday afternoons, there are many families who bring their children in to shop in my store. I have even been able to do some toy trading with some of them. I hope to help develop more collectors of snack prizes to trade with here in the future.

Yesterday was a celebration of the Festival of St. John, a holiday that is especially important in the San Martin Region of Peru. Meche's brother is the head of the local Masonic Lodge, so we were invited to go to a party with the Masons in a rented bus to a town in the jungle along the Huallaga River called Chicha Alta. I knew there would be many children there, so I took several bags full of chocolate and bubble gum that I had taken out of the wrappers to collect the plastic toys, stickers, and tattoos that come in them. I passed out the sweets in the afternoon, and now I am very popular with a new group of children -- not so sure about their parents.

It reminded me of the times when I opened whole master cases of Cracker Jack in search of certain prizes (first during the time we found a number of 1980s prizes that had been recycled into boxes in the early 90s in Oklahoma, then later when we found vast quantities of Looney Tunes pinballs in Kansas City.) Diane and I were handing out gallon ziplock bags of CJ to all the neighborhood kids, and taking CJ to work everyday trying to get people to eat it or take it home to their kids or grandkids. It has been awhile since I have had those kinds of exciting experiences with new Cracker Jack prizes. Aaah, for the days of Borden... Now for the days of bordom.

I am very excited to be here in South America, because the excitement of hunting new prizes to complete sets of current licensed products is right here in my house every day. I am having a blast!

HAVE FUN!
Jeffrey


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 2011 3:37 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 01, 2008 12:58 am
Posts: 1169
Hi, Jeffrey :hiya:

Great to see that you can still find the "thrill of the hunt" even in the jungles of Peru! :D

I think I speak for all CJCA collectors that you need to come back and join us again. With a membership you will have access to the "members only" section of this website. There you will find dozens of series discussed, with pictures. Archives of many Cracker Jack Series are there for the studying. Also all past Prize Insiders are available for viewing there! Think about my CJ Bud'! :popcorn:
This invitation is for everyone who is interested in the history and prizes of the Cracker Jack Company, join your fellow collectors, we would love to have you.! :humbsip:

CJAAAJ :nutty:

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 2011 4:24 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jun 19, 2008 7:16 pm
Posts: 1340
Location: St. Louis, MO
Jeffrey Maxwell wrote:
I am in debt to CJCA for preserving my website. NOSCO flats will continue to be a lifelong study for me.

Luckily, Alex realized that your website had only a couple of days left on the Internet and got the ball rolling. Losing the Alphabet 26 Museum would have been a great loss to many collectors.

Jeffrey Maxwell wrote:
I am having a blast collecting injection-molded plastic Star Wars toys, mini dinosaurs, tiny soccer players, licensed cartoon character mini spoons, and put-together spinners that come in chocolates; tokens, pogs, tattoos, and stickers from bags of Frito-Lay and other brands of chips; and a number of similar free in-package items from cookies, candy and gum. I am sticking to small items, what Ron calls "shoebox toys", so it won't be difficult to transport my collection if I decide to move back home sometime in the future.

I'm sure that I'm not the only one who would love to see all your new discoveries. Ever think about doing another website?

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2011 5:51 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2008 6:47 pm
Posts: 1170
Location: Westland, Michigan
Hi Jeffrey,
Your Peruvian adventures sound so amazing as do all of your collections. It really is a treat to have you back in our arena. Loved your comment about the glory days of Borden that turned into boredom when Frito Lay took over the product. Sure wish we could get them going on some new series.

Do continue to lead us into the jungle. When I read your posts, I feel as though I am there with you and your family.

Have a good day at the store!

D.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 2:14 pm 

Joined: Thu Mar 10, 2011 11:48 pm
Posts: 122
@Sister Di! :hiya:

Thanks for following me on Facebook. I am happy that I can stay in touch with my friends through the Internet, even though I am more than 4,000 miles away in the middle of nowhere, er :|d , I mean paradise. ;)

I posted a new photo this week at:
http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.143961148950551.27777.100000099995385#!/photo.php?fbid=247326961947302&set=a.143961148950551.27777.100000099995385&type=1&theater

@Alex! :popcorn:

Thanks man! I will join the CJCA again. The fact that the newsletter is online sounds like a good reason by itself.

@Everyone! \:)/

I am already friends on Facebook with many CJCA members. Anyone who wants to be my friend on Facebook, who is not already, please remind me who you are by writing a note with your friend request to tell me you are a member of the CJCA or the CJCA Bulletin Board. I will friend you if I know you are a collector.

It will be a few years more (I can't guess how long for sure, but probably when the US economy improves a bit) before I return to the United States, but I will collect Cracker Jack prizes again when I do. It has been about 7 years since I have actively collected CJ prizes. I have returned to collecting other snack prizes in just the last year -- with a new awareness about what I want to accomplish in my collecting.

I am excited about starting over with a new Cracker Jack collection someday -- but with the information and knowledge I have now. Can you imagine how much fun that would be? I have a little time to figure out a creative new area of specialization. I don't need to put so much time and energy into alphabet prizes or lenticulars this time around. Been there, done that. But I'll figure out something interesting between now and then.

Happy collecting,
and HAVE FUN! :banana:
Jeffrey


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