May 22nd, 2007


Heads Up 7-Up

Does anybody remember that game Heads Up / Seven Up? Did anyone else think that game was somehow related to the soft drink, but couldn't quite put two and two together?

I'll tell you what I think. First of all, that game was bullshit because unless you got picked by the teacher to start out, you weren't getting picked unless one of your friends were up there. But, even then, that hardly worked anyway, because all the boys picked girls they had crushes on, and none of the girls had crushes on me!

Oh yeah, I'm The Guy In His Twenties Who's Still Bitter That Nobody Ever Picked Him For Heads Up / Seven Up.

And then! If you did happen to be one of the seven picked, someone almost ALWAYS cheated and peaked at you when you tapped their thumb. Fuckin' assholes.

I remember, we used to play this game called Mum Ball. These rediculous elementary school games geared towards either Education or Silence; here's the deal: the class sits on top of their desks and underhandedly passes a nerf ball to anyone at random. If you didn't catch the ball or if you made a noise, you were out and had to sit in your chair. Winner got a sticker or something. What sucked about this game, though, is that if there was a bad throw - but it was still close enough for you to reach out and grab it - you had to leave the game because either you fell out of your seat catching it, or you let it go and the dumbass teacher - who was most certainly bribed before the contest - called you out for letting drop a supposedly catchable ball. Elementary school, it's all politics man.

We were never really a dodgeball type of school - I think, somehow, they banned that game before I arrived. However, we were HUGE into 4-Square. And, for a while, it was great; I was one of the better players mostly because I could always yell loudly and have had an effective grasp of curse words since kindergarten, so if there was ever a questionable call, I could piss and moan better than the other guy. I like to think I've gotten over that competitive tendency somewhat and have learned to take defeat honorably - and then you get me in a backyard baseball contest and I'm all about taking sinister advantage wherever possible.

Anyway, one year they got the Recess Monitors out and had them teach us the "Official Rules of 4-Square." I guess there was one too many balls rescued from the school's roof from a well-placed Cherry Bomb ... I don't care what anybody says, as long as you call "popcorn" you can bounce the ball in your hands as long as you want, then psyche them out by making them think you're gonna drop it low into somebody else's square, and then BAM, without looking, slam that shit right into some other kid's ankles, call Chicken Feet, and rotate on into the server's square. ANYWAY, they wanted us to play right: no overhand hits, no double hits, no fisties, no black magic, no screw attacks; it was complete bullshit. Between ruining 4-Square with their civilized play and ruining Tetherball by not letting us catch it and throw it like Dave Krieg over the pole as hard as we could, our Skyline Elementary School officials were really taking the fun out of recess.

Anybody ever notice how sometimes old elementary school recess games suddenly saw their own revival? I remember like six years later, we're all in middle school, and we're out there drawing out the 4-Square space and asking the gym teacher for a red rubber ball.

What I'm really saying is, why am I sitting here in a corporate office in Rockefeller Center when I could be out there playing 4-Square. Or Red Rover! I used to fucking blow that shit UP; they wouldn't even pick me anymore because they knew their shit was about to be ruined. Sometimes, when I'm standing at a crosswalk waiting for the little orange hand to leave and the little white man tell me it's OK to cross the walk, and it's particularly busy with foot traffic, I like to pretend we're playing a businessman's version of Red Rover, and then I run across the street - using the windmill technique of course - knocking the suits to the ground, bloodying their noses, then turning around triumphantly like Rocky in those movies, bellowing for all to hear, "Send Steven Right Over, Bitches!!!"

Does this post officially make me the Uncle Rico of Elementary School Recess Sports? Does that mean I physically peaked at age 8?