Sunday, January 24, 2010

Not last night, but the night before



We had friends for dinner, and deep into our third bottle of wine, we had covered most to the usual subjects. I'll not bore you with the specifics. Through the haze, I reflected on something I saw on PBS earlier in the week. See if it catches you as off guard as it did me.

Sometime in the not so distant past the joy of jumping rope went away.

Age appropriately (in public at least) until maybe 6th grade rope jumping was practiced in the mid 60's. Fifteen years later gone, and along with it all the jumping rhymes, and terms like double dutch. Gone, went the way of hop scotch, and 4 square.

Granddaughter Paige will be 10 next month, just about the right age for jumping. If I asked her to jump rope with me she'd think I'd had 3 heads.

Since I was in my cups, I posited that the last jump roper in America could likely be located, boxers and exercise fanatics excepted. Probably a woman in her mid 40's.

Know her?

Toad

Photo from Iceland Eyes

16 comments:

Heather said...

Toad: I loved to jump rope while I was growing up,and I'm only turning 32 this week!

house things said...

Such nice and simple ways to spend afternoons and early evenings before being called in for dinner. I'd love to see some of those rhymes again.

Suburban Princess said...

I used to jump rope when I was around that age - that brief period of time starting from getting a bit co-ordinated through to the hormone years. I was never very good at it tho :O(

Anonymous said...

Kids in our neighborhood still jump rope, on a gorgeous spring day while waiting for the school bus, at school outside on recess, and it is a regular activity at my daughters Girl Scout troop meetings, rhymes and all! Teddy Bear teddy bear turn a round, teddy bear teddy bear touch the ground.....see not quite gone here in St. Louis! Love your blog! Thanks!

Mrs. Blandings said...

I'm pretty sure my children jump rope in gym class (likely not to rhymes) though never at home.

Gwennie said...

Last year my turning 7 year old son wanted an "old fashion" birthday. We served hot dogs and strawberry soda in glass bottles. Every one had a Black Cow for a treat. We gave each boy a bucket filled with wooden pick up sticks, yo-yo's, silly putty, slinkies, jacks, marbles and wooden handled jump ropes. They played non-stop for three hours, outside, and had a blast. Boys are already asking John if he will do it again this year.

~Tessa~Scoffs said...

Les Petits are forced (forced!) to participate in a Jump-Rope-A-Thon for the American Heart Association next month. Care to sponsor any and all?

~Tessa~Scoffs said...

Oh, and P.S. - Charmant and his classmates play a cut throat game of four square every day at recess.

Toad said...

Well I'll be switched. Deep down I suspect it bypassed my daughter's generation.

Anon, thank you, I haven't seen a jump rope in STL in many years. You have all restored my faith.

tintarosa said...

I can assure you that jump rope is alive and well. I have to regularly take the rope away from the boys because they are always finding inappropriate things to the back of their bikes and tearing off down the street. Teatherball and 4 square are played regulary in our driveway as well.

Town and Country Mom said...

"Miss Mary Mack, Mack, Mack" My ten-year-old is still jumping rope and knows some rhymes from recess--not to be confused with Phys. Ed. Also, seems that four square and kickball are still thriving here.

Mom on the Run said...

My kids did Jump Rope for Heart, but the standing around at recess with the big jump rope taking turns "jumping in" to all the rhymes was something they never did because they never had recess. Just short bits of "oustside time" to get the wiggles out and that was it. I think there are jump rope teams where they do seriously hard tricks, but of course, that's just like baseball moving from the backyard to supervised travel teams.

Toad said...

Mrs. T's middle kid, a mid 20's type plays dodge ball year round. His fave is a tourny in Chitown just after New Years

Shelley said...

I'm 53 and own a jump rope, I'll admit, but can't remember the last time I used it (probably sometime in my 40s). I actually read somewhere recently that jumping up and down -- even more than running -- was the best exercise to protect against loss of bone density.

Toad said...

Gotta play hell on knees though.

EatPlayLove said...

You are going to laugh, but my 6 year old loves to jump rope. We have a long rope tied to the tree so I can twirl one end while she jumps. To top it off, Santa brought her a book of jump rope rhymes for Christmas, I kid you not.

I love jump roping, but maybe I'm just as nostalgic as you.