Or seems to. I’m sure some people here will remember these but I don’t know anyone in person who does.
“Monty Haul” adventures in Dragon magazine. Not the concept of Monty Haul, but a series of adventures by people who fought things like “12 Tiamats by calling a strike by their orbiting USS Enterprise.”
Made me think of Water Wiggles. A cone placed on the top of a garden hose and the hose flies around and…wacks kids in the head resulting in lawsuits and the toy being banned. Along with clik-claks. I’m sure tons of people remember those though.
Hardly any of my friends realize that the original jingle for Rice-a-Roni is lying, because the preparation instructions specifically CALL for bringing the San Francisco treat to boiling before reducing to a simmer.
Because hardly any of them know the original jingle.
There was another thing we played with back in the '50s, but I don’t remember what they were called—snakes or worms or something like that. They were small pellets that looked like charcoal and smelled like sulfur. If they were exposed to heat, they’d fizzle and spit and expand into long, gnarly strips, hence the name (snakes or worms). We used to put them on the sidewalk and focus sunlight onto them with a magnifying glass until they were hot enough to ignite.
There was also a kind of plastic that came in a tube (like toothpaste) that you could put on the end of a straw and blow into as though you were blowing glass. The stuff had a strong solvent smell like airplane glue and probably made a lot of kids high.
And then there were Fizzies, soft drink tablets that bubbled like Alka-Seltzer. My favorite was root beer. Anybody remember those? They were almost as good as soda fountain phosphates (my favorites were cherry and lime). Haven’t had one of those since the early '80s.
Is the one you recall shaped like a little dome/cone, where you blow into the base? I had one of those mounted on a ring, when I was a kid. Got it in a gumball-type machine* in front of a liquor store at the corner of Geary and 12th Avenue in San Francisco back in 1964.
And now I want it back. In fact, I want summers in the early Sixties back, when my parents would load four or five of us onto a Greyhound bus to San Francisco to spend a few weeks with Grandma and Grandpa Kranzke and Auntie Moe, and Uncle Bob, and ohfuckigotsomethinginmyeye…
I remember those. They were called black snakes, I believe. My mother always hated them, because they left a black carbon residue on the driveway that was almost impossible to clean away. We learned to do them well away from our own property.
If they went into the ground near a buried power line, you could get electrocuted when you to tried to pull them out. I remember hearing this had happened to one little kid back in '75. (The date really stuck in my mind: Sunday, 22 June.)
The pellet things were called Snakes (at least in my neck of the woods) and I only remember seeing them around the 4th of July; they were considered part of the whole fireworks thing. In fact, I recently reminded my brother of the time he got in big trouble for directly defying our dad who ordered him not to light them on the sidewalk (they make a big, sooty mess).
The stuff you put on a straw and blew to make a bubble was “Super Elastic Bubble Plastic” and it did indeed contain some nasty stuff that eventually led to it being taken of the market. I can recall the smell as clearly as if I was holding it right now.
I don’t recall Fizzies as clearly as the other two, but you are definitely not alone in your memory of it.
Somewhat related to ** kaylasdad99’s ** Water Wiggle (we had one too!) was the lesser known Water Weenie. * Please * tell me someone remembers those. The same brother who incurred my dad’s wrath with the Snake burning had an “incident” with a Water Weenie; he was filling one up and it either popped or flew off the end of the hose. Either way, it was traumatic to his weenie :eek: We’ve been laughing about that for 45 years.
The only other time I’ve encountered that smell was terrifying: When she was three, my daughter somehow contracted a bad kidney infection. Before I rushed her back to her mom’s, where she spent the next month bedridden, it was precisely the odor her breath had. What kind of chemical reaction in her body could possibly have produced it, I have no idea. But it instantly took me back to when I was five or six years old!
This was (as far as I can tell) a 1970s UK knockoff of the iconic Saddle Slide play sculpture created by Jim Miller-Melberg in the 1950s (visible on this page)
The PG7 saddle shapes used to be very common in children’s playgrounds in the UK - I always thought they were intended to represent a tent of some kind, but I’m not sure if that was just me. There’s one surviving example in a pub garden near where I live, but I don’t know of any others still standing.
Not many people seemed to remember them when I posted a pic on Instagram and featured it in a YouTube video.