The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #169957   Message #4109357
Posted By: Jerry Rasmussen
08-Jun-21 - 02:30 PM
Thread Name: BS: Childhood Summer Games
Subject: BS: Childhood Summer Games
Childhood Summer memories

Writing about walking in the grass in bare feet opened the door to a whole flood of Summer memories when I was a kid. These may not all match yours, because we didn’t grow up in the same place, or time. Here are some of mine, and a comment about if kids do these things today.

Playing in the Rain. On rainy days, we were outside as much as in. When we felt the first few drops, we’d all head home. Five minutes later we were back outside, playing in the rain. We had boat races in the rapid water running down the gutters on the side of the street. Any available stick would become a boat. Of course, you had to select the right size and shaped stick. If it had twigs coming off the sides, you had to break them off as close to the body as you could. You didn’t want twigs to hang your boat up at a critical moment.

Anther popular boat was made by weaving Popsicle sticks into a square… very seaworthy, but more likely to get hung up on clogged leaves or a stick.

I have never seen kids playing out in the rain where I live, although the neighborhood looks much the same. There’s probably an app for it.

Mumblety Peg. This game may have gone by a different name, depending on where you grew up. You needed a decent sized jack knife to play this. That was no problem… at least for boys. I’m not so sure about girls. Jack knives were one of the first rites of passage. If you were really lucky, your parents could be talked into buying you high cuts boots with a jack knife pouch on the side of one of the boots. I was born in 1935, and when I was a young kid, boys still wore knickers. Knickers were pants that had an elastic band to hold them just above the knees. They were all the rage in the twenties and thirties. In Wisconsin, they didn’t pass out of fashion until I was six or seven years old. I’ve been told that in England, knickers were girl’s panties, giving a different image of young boys in America in the early forties…

In mumblety peg, you lean over, balancing the point of your jack knife on the tip of your index finger of your left hand, and give it a little flip so that when it falls, it will flip over and the point of the jack knife will stick in the ground, with the knife standing up. It’s not as easy at is sounds. When you get it, you move on your middle finger, and work you way down to your pinky. Then you start on your right fingers. The grand finale is to balance the tip of your knife on your noise, and give it a good flip (but not too good,) until you get your knife to land point down, with the tip of your knife stuck in the ground. I think there was another step before you went to your nose… flipping your knife off each elbow.

I don’t remember girls playing this. Girls With Knives?! That would make a good title for a horror movie. ??

Coming up, Curb games, like ”I packed my mother’s suitcase,” or ”Truth or Consequences.

Girl games need to be described by GURLS. Any volunteers?