THURSDAY THIRTEEN #5 . . . 13 OLD SCHOOL GAMES I (WE) GREW UP WITH . . .
Several weeks ago, I caught the tail end of an HGTV program about the different toys and games kids commonly enjoyed "back in the day."
The program led me to ponder the differences in how old school kids amused themselves vs. today's youths. When I look back on the games we enjoyed in the '60s, '70s and early '80s, quite a number of them required more than one or two bodies, involved very little if any equipment and/or gadgetry, were typically played outdoors and more often than not, involved a whole bunch of ripping and running.
Of couse, we old schoolers had our share of toys and gadgets, like the Hoola Hoop, Barbie Doll, GI Joe and even Pong and the Rubic's Cube, which could be enjoyed by one or two kids. But for the purposes of this particular post, I'd like to focus on those games I (We) grew up with, which, truth be told, were actually a heck of a lot more fun when the number of kids participating exceeded three. You know, games like . . .
1) RED ROVER, RED ROVER (The worst thing about this game was when the big kid came charging over . . . If you were smart, rather than get knocked down or wind up with third degree arm burns, you and the kid standing next to you simply, let go each others hands.)
2) FREEZE TAG (This was one of my favorite games--probably because of all of the funny and creative poses involved.)
3) RED LIGHT, GREEN LIGHT (Why was the shortest kid, generally the quickest?)
4) MOTHER, MAY I? (Didn't the bossiest girl in the group *the one who most reminded you of "Margaret" from "Dennis the Menace" or "Lucy" from the "Peanuts" series* always INSIST on being the MOTHER?
5) DODGE BALL (I can only chuckle at those folks who claim this game is way too aggressive and violent for the likes of children. My grandmother, who grew up in rural South Memphis during the 19- teens and the '20s, used to speak fondly of a game they played called "fireball." In this game, kids would collect a bunch of old rags, tie them together, soak them in kerosene, set them on fire and toss them at one another. No, people, seriously . . . I couldn't make this stuff up if I wanted too.)
6) KICK BALL (My son informed me that nowadays, all of the cool kids, turn their feet and kick sideways, like the soccer players do. Yeah, kid, whatever. I'm sure we had just as much fun, kicking it straight . . . even though, sometimes the younger kids would end up flat on their backs and staring up at the sky in their attempts to do so.)
7) HIDE & SEEK (The hubby claims the older and more mannish and womanish (more Black Southern ebonics) kids in his neighborhood used to a play a verison of this game that they called, "Hide & Go Get." Of course, he swears he never indulged in such shenanigans.)
8) JUMP ROPE (We've come a long way, haven't we? Back in the day, most guys didn't play this game, the way they do now. But wasn't there always this one guy who could turn the rope, double dutch, spin around and touch the ground better than any of the girls?)
9) HOP-SCOTCH (Yeah, you could play this by yourself. But the more girls, the better the arguments.)
10) SIMON SAYS (You really couldn't play this game with everybody. Because some of the more twisted kids, would try to take the game to a whole another level. After playing with them you'd either end up in traction or needing therapy.)
11) DUCK, DUCK GOOSE! (The hubby claims the kids in his hood never played this game. Probably becasue they were too busy playing "Hide & Go Get.")
12) TOUCH/TAG FOOTBALL (My little brother suffered a broken collar bone while playing this game. Back then, he was skinny, runt of a kid and one of the neighborhood kids--a boy by the name of "Big Junior" fell on him).
13) YOU'RE IT! (Seemed like the slowest, goofiest kid always ended up being "it." Yeah, that would have been me. But wasn't there always this even goofier kid who'd fall down at your feet because he or she wanted to be tagged? Yeah, I always stepped right over that fool.)
Okay, your turn. What was your favorite "old school" game? Or, if you prefer, which game did you absolutely hate and only played under duress (smile)? Feel free to mention games that aren't included on the list.