4 Nov 2018

And Then, Toys...

Whilst whizzing through TV channels recently I was reminded that Christmas is the next spend-a-fest on the calendar and was struck, not for the first time, by the huge number of kids toys that are available. I was also prompted to wonder how many kids will be throwing hissy fits on Christmas morning when it transpires that the kit they begged for isn’t quite as the cleaver TV adverts depicted it and, in fact, all those cars an’ such whizzing about actually need to be pushed along with a pudgy little finger.

Never mind the mega tantrum throwing by a six year old when a ‘new’ iPhone isn’t located amongst all the packages. That would be the ‘new’ iPhone with the ‘new’ hugely expensive feature that’ll only be used by one in every hundred users.

Then I remembered one of my favourite toys and this I ‘made’ myself and the ‘making’ of said toy was prompted by those good ol’ Western movies we used to watch at the kids Saturday morning movies. Remember that? Six old pennies to get in, a cartoon, followed by the Flash Gordon serial that always had a cliff-hanger, come back next week final scene, followed by a couple more cartoons, an interval for the rich kids to buy ice cream then all rounded off by the main movie; and that would usually be a Western.

Anyhoo, wot was it I built? Why a Winchester rifle of course. Or to be more precise, I took an old broom shaft,** cut it to small boy Winchester rifle length and screwed an old door bolt onto it to serve the dual pretend purpose of a click-click breech and a trigger. You know wot? It became a treasured item and I must’ve played Cowboys an’ Indians with that stick for longer than I care to remember.

These memories prompted a Googling for images of kids with sticks and guess wot; I ran into the glorious image below that couldn’t get any better. Sums up childhood days long gone to perfection.


**I now have no memory as to how a wooden broom shaft could possibly become ‘old’.

Quote;  Marvin Davis.

“As men get older, the toys get more expensive.”


A K Haart said...

Your old broom shaft rifle reminds me of something similar I made with an old wooden waggon wheel spoke I found while walking in Derbyshire with my parents. I didn't have a bolt to stick on it but I did have a length of dowel for the barrel. A very short length of dowel it was so I had to use quite a bit of imagination.

Mac said...

A K Haart,
I’m betting we got more enjoyment and fostering of our imagination from our sticks than the kids today get from their ‘guns’ of light flashing, sound emitting, battery eating, multi-coloured fragile plastic tat.
Our sticks are probably still ‘out there’ somewhere. Compare to the toys of today; play today, dropped tomorrow, broken and binned.