With help from a blogger colleague, who asked baseball player and baseball card collector Pat Neshek about our 01/99 rip card on a message board, we have learned that Mr. Neshek is only seeking the 1/1 wood mini. I can all but guarantee we don't HAVE the wood mini in that rip card.
Our poll was causing me to trend toward ripping the thing, but two factors changed my mind.
1) At the time we counted (noon Saturday, mountain time) the poll results at first seemed lopsided in favor of rip. But on closer examination, "Don't rip" received 29 votes, or 32 percent. "Rip" received 45 votes, or 49 percent. Surprisingly, "Don't know" received 17 votes or 19 percent. Adding "Don't rip" plus "Don't know" gave us a result (51 percent) that didn't shout "rip."
2) Then our older daughter said, "Ripping this card open would make you seem kind of barbaric to cards." Baseball cardboard barbarism is hardly our goal.
And how is ripping a pretty 01/99 Allen & Ginter card simply because we hope there's something better inside different from going to Target and buying a retail blaster box knowing there won't be anything great in there and yet HOPING against all common sense and previous experience that there will be? A one of 99 rip card may be as good as it gets.
So thank you everyone for your votes and comments, we appreciate it. We've pondered your insights and have done everything suggested, including the flashlight trick--although the results were not conclusive. We considered sending the rip card to Los Alamos National Laboratory for a battery of tests, but instead decided that the only place we will send the happy little unripped card is to Mr. Neshek to sign.