Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Thrilling Toys of Yesteryear

The dashing swashblogger Scaramouche brings us back this week, with his "Tech Tuesday" feature, to the world of baby boomer toys. Reading his entry and clicking through to the link for was a sweet trip down memory lane. Among the toys displayed that I remember having were the whamo superball and supermagnet, "greenies" caps (for our toy guns), "Sixfinger" shooting finger ("The most amazing toy ever"), and glow-in-the-dark models for Dracula and Frankenstein's monster. What really impressed me was the "Secret Sam Attache Case," featuring a handgun with attachable long barrel and stock to convert it into a rifle, a hidden rubber knife in the body of the case, and a booby trap you could set that would ignite caps if somebody opened the case without first disarming it by flipping the "secret switch." This impressed me because, although I had a case similar to this one, mine wasn't a "Secret Sam" case; it was a "007" case. I can't tell if this one does, but mine would also shoot bullets out of the case itself.

Other toys featured that I played and fought with my sisters over were a Mr. Potato head set, silly putty (of course), and a Vac-U-Form. Let me describe this last one for you. You have a metal box, about 5" deep, 5" tall, and 10" wide. This box will heat up for you small colored plastic sheets which, when hot, you press down upon a metal mold. The molds were of such things as cars, trains, planes, and probably some stupid little girl things too. After the plastic had cooled you cut out the toy you had made, painted it if you want, and played with it. It was fun. Really.

I remember my sisters having the "Easy Bake Oven," "Little Kiddles," and "Finger Dolls." The fun thing about this site was the memories it sparked of other toys I had that aren't on display here. There was my M-16 and my .45, both of which fired spring loaded bullets, My Fireball XL-5 Space City, with spring loaded rockets that would launch all the way to the ceiling, and of course Lego and Lincoln Logs. I wonder if kids today will remember video games as fondly as I remember those toys.

Alright, enough old fogey behavior for tonight.
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