a tale of tails, tenacity, and tedium, as told by me, usually barefoot and bellowing

Monday, September 19, 2011

Cats Eye Marbles

When I was a child, marbles was one of my favorite games.  It could be played alone or with a group.  It was a popular game in the school yard.  You could play keepsie, where the player gets to keep the marble they hit...I never chanced loosing mine.  They were too beautiful to gamble away during a game.

I had a favorite shooter which was larger than my other marbles.  Dad had given it to me from his childhood.  It was a very plain, perfectly round stone marble and someone had given it to him.  I still have it and have no idea how old it is.  My favorites small marbles were the cats eyes...in many different colors.

Our main game was four holes in the dirt with a center hole.  The goal was to shoot into, hoping to knock out the other guy's marble with out getting knocked out yourself.  You "knuckled down" to play, using your thumb to "shoot" the marble. The first one to make it to the last hole without being knocked out was the winner.

I know this doesn't sound like much fun but oh, it was.  I could play for hours in our driveway alone.  I prized my marbles and never traded.

In the fourth grade our teacher gave us each a marble and we lined them up in front of the heater.  As they got hot, she dropped the marbles into cold water.  We were given a beautifully cracked, yet intact, marble as a souvenir.

Certainly doesn't hold a light to video games but for us it was the cat's meow.

18 comments:

Buttons said...

Oh I love marbles I was the champion marble player at my school I remember coming home with bags of marbles. I unfortunately had 6 brothers, need I say more. I sure wish I had them now I see they are worth a lot of money then I could buy a camera. B

Ms. ~K said...

What a great science lesson in 4th grade!!!! :)
~K

Dreaming said...

Our game was jacks, not marbles. Although I do remember having some marbles and admiring all of the pretty colors. While packing I found a few very old ones. They are now in a box downstairs someplace!
How cool of that teacher to gift a cracked marble to everyone!

Country Gal said...

I never played marbles but my older siblings did. Papa our youngest son and I were digging here at the Cove last year and found an old marble in the ground it was cool so we gave it to our son who loves to collect old things we dont know if it was from the kids that lived here long before us or the kids that attended the school house that we have the foundation of in our basement before it was a farm house back in the 1800s. Wonderful photo and post. Have a great day !

Tamara said...

What a wonderful post!! Right away my mind rushed back to Iowa, where I went first grade thru fourth grade. We played marbles and jacks during recess. I kept my marbles in a mason jar and remember them so well! Besides playing a game of them, I would pour them out on my bed and admire them all. And your right about the cats eyes being the most beautiful and interesting ones. What a cool teacher you had, to give you a gift like that. :) Thanks for the wonderful walk back this morning. :) xoxoxo

LindaG said...

I remember never being good at marbles.
I loved the cat's eyes, too. :)

ellen abbott said...

I had a small jar of marbles I had dug up in the yard over the years (house was over 100 years old) that I kept on my windowsill in the kitchen. One day my grandson noticed them and wanted me to give them to him. I said no, these were mine and he had marbles. One day we came back from the country and my marbles, jar and all, were gone. he denied taking them but I still think he did. never saw them again.

EmptyNester said...

We never played marbles although we did have marbles. We just didn't know how to play the game- we made up our own ways of playing with them. But we always played outside and created our own games! I think that's way better than video games! Thanks for the memories!

Deanna said...

What a wonderful stroll down memory lane!! Great post!!

Farm Girl said...

I played that for hours too. I had a container full of marbles that I kept with me until I had kids and then I think they got divided among them. I still think I have found gold when I am out working and find a cat eye in the dirt.
I have a friend who brought me back some agates from England. There is a beach there where these really old marbles wash up on shore. I will post a picture of them.
In this place where the marbles wash up sometimes there are some from the Roman times. She went to a Marble store while in England and he told her all about it.
I still love Marbles as much as I ever did.

Sue said...

For some reason, we never played marbles. We were too obsessed with jacks, I guess.

=)

Pat said...

I didn't play marble; we play jacks. This is a great story, though! I can't believe you've kept your marbles (in more ways than one!) all these years! Haha!

Eva Ason said...

Lovely cats eyes! Used to play marbles when I was little.
Nice story. Enjoy your Day!

Nora said...

I loved playing marbles too and was quite good at it. I had a nice collection and treasured it. It became my little sister's after me. She was 7 years younger than I was. I don't know what happened to them after that. I have some marbles I keep for good luck in a little keepsake box. A few small ones and one big one.

Nezzy said...

Oh baby, I soooo understand. I male cousins on the farm and I had to have my own marble collection to compete. I'm quite competitive ya know.

Loved those mysterious 'cat eyes'

God bless ya and have a terrific day sweetie!!! :o)

Far Side of Fifty said...

I love marbles and marble games. I have a special jar filled with marbles..not the marbles of my youth..but very similar ones. I love the feel of them in my hands and I like to look at them. Great post! :)

TechnoBabe said...

We had cats eyes and steelies. We did play keepsies. And I always had plenty of marbles. I had to play marbles with the boys because my female counterparts were playing hopscotch so I would get down on the dirt playground and play marbles.

Jeannelle said...

Thanks for jogging a memory...when I was a kid we'd draw a circle in the dust on the garage floor to play a game of marbles!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...