Saturday, March 5, 2016

There Were Tether Ball Terrors Back In The Day Before Schools Banned the Game

Good Day World!

Today's a "remember when" day.

Do you remember playing tether ball in school?

It was banned decades ago, but when I was growing up in the 1950s every school yard had several tether ball setups that consisted of a long metal pole with a rope attached at the top, and a ball fastened securely on the end of the rope (tether).

The rules were simple. Two players stood on opposite sides of the pole. Each player then tried to hit the ball one way; one clockwise, and one counterclockwise.

The game ended when one player managed to wind the ball all the way around the pole so that it is stopped by the rope.

You'd be surprised at how much damage a tether ball can inflict. Bullies often dominated through intimidation. Look the wrong way for one moment and you'd find yourself eating that ball!

Trash talk contributed to the bullies seeming invincibility. I only saw one bully have to eat both his words and the tether ball, but it was very instructive.

The elementary school I went to in Southern California was a mix of whites and hispanics with just a few blacks. I felt sorry for them because they were picked on mercilessly.

In particular, there was one black girl named Sonya who was taller than most of the boys, and that included the school tether ball champion and bully, Peter.

Long story short; she challenged him to a game of tether ball and served up a can of whoop ass! She made that bully look like a fumbling fool.

Afterwards all he could do was leave, swearing profusively, as Sonya called for the next person in line!

Those were the days when we played red rover, dodgeball, kickball, freeze tag, and capture the flag. All banned now in 21st century schools.

The only thing that remains is the memories...

Time for me to walk on down the road... 

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