In the world of cards, condition is king. A card's value revolves around factors such as age, rarity, condition, etc.
But who really needs to follow this criteria to say that a card is valuable/not valuable? This seems like a post-modernist/ "hipster" view of an old hobby, but it's a valid argument to present in this day of financial woes. Sure there will always be those collectors that have endless money that they can just throw at cards. Most collectors aren't like this, and can share my sentiment with the cards that are beat to shit, but still love as if it were fresh out of the pack.
There is definitely an affinity with cards with the sharpest corners, with the most vibrant colors, the straightest edges. But these cards cannot tell a story. What does a perfect card say about it's original owner? Probably nothing worth knowing, or interesting enough to want to know.
I like to hear of a card's journey. Recent attic finds totaling $500,000+ is interesting to hear about, but those cards were stashed away for 90 years. They sat, and sat, and sat. My money is on the fact that the original owner of the cards probably forgot that he even had them. Which is a travesty in of itself.
I want to hear stories about how the cards was flicked against the side of a brick wall, about how they were stuck in bike spokes to make riding a bike sound like riding a chopper. Some people grimace at the sound of those stories, especially when it involves a card of high "value". See, there's that word again..
I am so content with the value of my collection, and the condition of the cards in it. I know that I might never own a card worthy of the Hall of Fame, but I couldn't care less.
I don't really know how I want to end this post, but maybe leave you all with something to chew on..
If you were building a collection starting today, what would it be, and what would you base the value of it on?