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Childhood Toys

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When a new year rolls around, people generally look back at the previous year and do some reflecting. I looked too far into the past and started reminiscing of my childhood memories and it was oh-so-glorious. Toys. The toys from the 1980’s were magnificent. They were original. They were timeless. Not to mention, the cartoons and TV programs were amazing as well.

I was going to post a top 10 list of best toys/games from my childhood, but that is an impossible task. So I am simply going to post on a bunch of the ones I thought were awesome:

Micro Machines:
Everybody remembers these. They had those crazy commercials of that mustache dude and then started getting crazy with micro machine minis and micro machines that had doors, hoods and trunks that opened. I had a collection of about twenty of them and honestly have no idea what ever happened to them.
Crocodile Mile:
Remember this version of the slip-n-rash? It’s pretty much the same thing as your normal slip-n-slide except you have to go through a plastic curtain with an alligator picture similar to the ones they use in industrial freezers minus the alligator picture. Remember how fun it was to get rashes on your knees and random body parts? Remember the fear of going through those curtains because your buddies were on the other side ready to jump you and punch your legs? The better name for this would be the slip-n-fight-those-who-you-thought-were-your-friends.
Ninja Turtles:
I only owned one of these guys but I confess that I contemplated many times of stealing my friends Donatello, Leonardo, and Michaelangelo. The one I had was Raphael and it had the option to lay him on his back and he could spin and destroy foot soldiers who surround him. Sick. Although everybody wanted at least one Ninja Turtle, all of my buddies wanted the bad guys: Bebop, Rocksteady, Shredder, Baxter Stockman, Casey Jones, or the body-less Krang. Yes, I watched the TV shows and all the movies religiously…who needs after school day care when you have Ninja Turtles airing right after you run home from the bus stop?
Pogo Balls:
I had one of these and had more use out of it as a chair while playing Nintendo than I did jumping around on it. The best game I used to play was to see how far up or down the stairs I could jump with this thing. The game always ended either very anti-climatically when I reached the top or with a major injury as my pre-adolescent frame collided with the painful steps. But since I was the only player each time and nobody else was stupid daring enough to play with me… I placed 1st every time. Champion!
Roller Racers:
These were not nearly as fun as bikes, but they were extremely fun and efficient when your friend was not paying attention and you wanted to ram their ankles for payback. (See related item above: Crocodile Mile fights) I vaguely remember people would fight over the rights to use these during recess and after thirty seconds of twisting right and left, they would almost always ditch the stupid thing. Screw that! Too much effort. We did find good use to these eventually as race carts down steep hills. The first one to bail out or brake was the loser. The last one to stay on was the winner… momentarily as they would always end up flipped over on the asphalt. I won…or lost depending how you see it, a bunch of times playing this. (See related item above: Idiot pogo stairs boy)

Spinjas:
I spent too many hours at my friends house hunkered over the tiny Spinjas arena watching our two little spinjas go at it. It wasn’t until he got the large arena where four players could play that our Spinja playing intensified exponentially. Name calling was introduced. Trash talking as well. Cheaters were accused of not spinning on time with everybody else which led to their winning that round. In the end, we all remained friends because we respected the Spinjas too much (and because I would be over at his house the next day probably to play it again). Thank you for many hours of entertainment and fun.
Heman Slime Pit:
My Asian parents strictly forbid me to own anything of or pertaining to “slime”. To them this was another mess waiting to happen or serious damage to the carpet or fight waiting to break out between me and my brother. They were probably very right to assume that all of the above would have happened. Because of this wisdom and foresight, I never owned Skeletor’s awesome slime pit but every time I saw the cool commercials, I could hear my inner-child soul crying out in pain.
Creepy Crawlers Oven:
Even though I knew my parents would never buy me anything slime-related, I somehow convinced them to buy me the Creepy Crawlers Oven Factory by telling them it was science related. This was probably one of the few triumphs of my childhood over my parents in toy purchases. Many hours were spent trying to get the oven to work properly and I always wondered how the creepy crawlers tasted after they came out of the bake dish. I regretfully never tried. My impatience always led to undercooked gelatin creatures which would smush the second I put them into my pocket as I ran to to the dinner table. Dang it!
Dino Riders:
After my heartbreaking realization as a child that I could not grow up to be a dinosaur, I went to plan B: Dino Riders. Talk about BA material for boys aged 3-28. I could play with this junk all day! Dinosaurs and laser beams. Sold. I remember spending time drawing dinosaurs with laser beam headgear and discussing with my Japanese classmate if the laser beams were accurate as in the cartoon. He almost always gave me a negative criticism in his broken English which made me want to Dino Rider his ass. I also remember hearing him make explosion and laser beam sounds with his mouth during silent reading time and when I looked over, he was drawing an epic Dino Rider battle scene. I guess he loved Dino Riders that much…or maybe he just couldn’t read yet…whatever. Crazy Japanese boys.
Battle Beasts:
I had a small death squad of these guys when I was growing up. Again, I have no idea where they ended up but I had the Crooked Crow, Pillaging Polar Bear, Torrential Tapir, Musky Ox, and Fleet Footed Antelope among many others. My friends and I would show each other the newest one we got and then end up stealing these things from each other back and forth. We would set these guys up all over the house and then run around with rubber band guns shooting them down and piss off mother when she finds random rubber bands in the chandelier, kitchen sink, pantry, in the couches, piano and fruit basket.
Pogs:
I had quite the extensive collection of pogs. Since my parents would never buy these for me, I started saving up every penny I could just so I could start my own collection with tons of pods that I stored them in and all sorts of special “slammers” ranging from cheapo plastic ones to the solid eliminators you could buy for $4. I actually enjoyed collecting the different series more than playing. In fact, this is the only game I’ve been involved in where friendships were forever broken. Imagine seeing your group of friends the next day and how awkward it is to not talk to your buddy because he’s a cheater at pogs. That’s right. A cheater at throwing down a weight to flip two milk caps over and keeping them if he somehow got them to stay flipped. I’ve also seen kids cry their eyes out when my buddies would win their entire collection and they would beg through teary eyes for them back. In the end, I lost my massive pog collection in a car accident and begged my father through tear eyes for him to retrieve them. He didn’t. Just kidding, I never cried. Real champions never associate themselves with crybabies…

Honorable Mentions:


Spirographs – I know these probably came out long before I was born but they were still fun for about a minute until I screwed up the pattern and threw a tantrum and crumbled the piece of paper.


Simon – Never played it but I’m sure I would have been good at it. Maybe. Probably. Definitely.


Koosh Ball – We used to throw these at girls we liked. I don’t know why they never talked to us though. My friend got smart and plucked each of the tentacles off and what remained was the solid rubber core. For some reason the girls didn’t like that even more…


Madballs – I never owned or liked these buy lots of my buddies had them. They’d throw them at me and then I’d throw them over the fence. Idiots.


Teddy Ruxpin – I never owned one but I secretly wanted one. There I said it. I mean, how can you resist that face? It says, “I’ve come to hug all your troubles away…” Creeeeepy

Did I miss anything from your childhood?

Until next time, Cheers.

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Written by jonewantsm3

January 6, 2011 at 1:00 am

Posted in Rant

One Response

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  1. i have my creepy crawler oven still if you want to try eating some glue

    enoch chao

    January 13, 2011 at 1:16 pm


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