By Jr. High School, I wasn't playing with figures anymore and my interests and attitudes were changing. I still had all of my toys though, I took them out occasionally, sometimes I set them up and anytime I was in a store that carried figures I would browse the the isles. I rarely bought one though.
My neighbor, Robbie, who was my age had stopped playing with his toys too and had no interest in keeping them. For him, that summer before Jr. High, cigarettes and a new gel spiked hair cut had replaced Joes.
Robbie would buy or trade cigarettes from the older kids or steal them from his dad, since he couldn't find a store that would sell to an underage kid. My Dad was a smoker too- and it occurred to me once, as we walked along and Robbie told me he was out of cigarettes, that my dad had a few cartons stocked at our house...
For the next week, Robbie and I traded cigarettes for Joes- until he ran out of figures. I ended up with 10 or 15 new Joes, most of them were characters I didn't have- like drivers that were harder to get because they were not sold as single carded figures, and a few others were doubles for troop building. While they didn't get much play, I was happy to own them and have them in my collection.
So, that was Robbie's worst Joe trade as a dumb kid..
'Mr. Barbeque, I am da Viper. I come on Vriday. Vest corner. Top vloor virst. $5.75 an hour.'