Growing up, ever year, we got to open one present — always pajamas —every Christmas Eve. One of those traditions you think is unique to your family when young, then you grow up and realize how common it is. Every year it would be a whole ordeal finding that box of pajamas on the tree — my mom would always mark the box, but then it would get mixed in with everything else and there would be a whole process of, “maybe I didn’t mark it this year? I think it’s maybe that one? Or, wait…”
I remember one year bitching and moaning that it wasn’t fair, that I didn’t want pajamas, that I wanted to pick which present I got to open for me one Christmas Eve allowance. Either because they were tired of listening to me, or maybe they actually hadn’t marked the pajama boxes that year and couldn’t remember which one it was, my parents finally gave in. I picked up a few, shook them, investigated the size. It was an important decision.
I finally chose and opened and I think it was this, the 1989 Starting Lineup Mark McGwire. That would make sense — 1989 would put me at 12, which seems about right for my remembered and above described attitude, and I know I owned that McGwire figure, but it’s possible my the actual Starting Lineup figure I opened that year was a different player, and/or maybe a year before or after.