A little more information, regarding the trading card in question, from the writeup above.
Not long after the first production line
had shipped, people noticed the now-infamous "FUCK FACE
on the knob of the bat held in Bill Ripken's 1989 Fleer
baseball card. After it was 'discovered', there were three attempts to 'fix' it, in subsequent printing runs. First came the hasty
" variant, where the phrase in question was scribbled over with a magic marker
. Next came the "whiteout" version which means, obviously, that someone in production had taken to using white-out to solve the problem. Finally, for the remainder of the printings, a more typical, but none too elegant method was used to obscure the remark -- a black box
. One wonders why they never airbrush
ed the card for a more aesthetic
How did this happen? To this day, no one is 100%
sure. The original theory was that someone from Fleer scribbled it on to the print, but that was downplayed
once Ripken 'admitted' that one of his teammates had pulled a prank
on him. This said, I find it hard for this statement to hold water. Based on what I seem to remember from my youth, Ripken, while by no means a star player like his brother
, was said to be something of a prankster
himself. Thus, I have suspicion that this was his own doing. Furthermore, even if his teammate(s) had pulled off the phrase, how would it have been guaranteed that the text would be aligned, perfectly horizontal
, as it was in the photo?
I also don't discount
the notion some have put forth, that, despite their plea of innocence, Fleer knew about the card, but took no action, because the company
knew it would result in more publicity and sales. The fact that it did
- and the fact that Fleer put out three subsequent variations on the card, creating an "easter egg hunt
", in essence -- both lend credence
to this idea.
For what it's worth (no pun intended
), the "whiteout" card is the most "valuable" of the four variations generally commanding four times in value what the original and the "scribble" cards go for. The "black box" variant, of course, has little value, other than perhaps some intrinsic
interest, an epilogue
to the whole controversy.