Thursday, November 29, 2007

Who cared if we poked our eyes out?

Kids from the 70's were tough! When it came to toys, toy manufacturers were in it for the WOW factor. There must have not been much thought or worry about Timmy hurting himself and his parents suing for millions. I had a lot of these dangerous toys myself as a child.

Remember the Lemon Twist? You attached a plastic circle to your ankle that had a plastic lemon on the end of it. You swung your leg around and jumped the little lemon. Talk about a workout! If you were really good you could do it while running. I can't tell you how many times I fell and wiped out when I really got going. Skinned knees galore!

How about the clacker? This was basically two heavy plastic balls on a string that you got going with a flick of your wrist. They made a fantastic clacking noise that drove parents and teachers crazy!! Kids would have huge bruises on their wrists from playing with these toys. The toy became lethal if you tried to throw it at someone!!

Other favorite dangerous toys included:

Baby Alive--The commercial went something like "Baby Alive.....soft and sweet.... she can eat and she can drink....." Of course as a kid we substituted the lyrics she can poop and she can pee for the eat and drink part. I wanted one of these dolls so badly!! I finally got one for Christmas and thought it was great!!! You gave her a bottle and she peed instantly in her diapers. There was some kind of food concoction that you mixed up and fed her (she had moving lips!!!) and it eventually ended up in her diapers as a brown poo-like substance. The only drawback was that she went through diapers like crazy and they were expensive. Eventually they found out that the "food" was molding inside the dolls and kids were getting sick. Once this announcement was made, I am sure that a lot of Baby Alive dolls ended up in the dump. The doll also made a reappearance in the 80's and I recently saw an updated model in a ToysRUs ad.

Chinese Jump rope- Basically a big rubberband that two people wrapped around their legs and a third person stood on the middle and twisted it around their legs and did strange contortions to leap out of the middle. Big opportunities existed to fall and break a limb when trying to get out of it. All the cool girls played this game during recess.

Lawn Darts- This actually proved to be deadly to some people. They were basically jumbo sized darts with metal needle-like tips that you threw at targets outside. Now I don't think that it takes a genius to figure out that kids would throw these at each other.

Plastic Bubble Glue- This was a psychadelic rainbow colored substance that was guaranteed to either get kids high or destroy a few brain cells. It smelled toxic!!! It came in a squeeze tube. You squeezed out a pea sized blop, rolled it into a ball, and stuck it on the end of a little straw. You then blew air in the straw and produced a bright colored rubber ball. You could pinch of the end and play with the ball and bat it around with your hands. Not much to it but I always used to get my mom to buy this for me. I guess kids were too high off the fumes to realize how dumb it was. It was cheap and you could find it in the toy sections at most grocery stores.

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