« The Piacenza Liver | Main | State of the Person »

March 03, 2024


Don Z. Block

We called it slapball or square. The field was located on the Avenue H-East Ninth Street intersection. Each corner of the 4-way intersection was a base. Home plate was the sewer near the front entrance to Fred and Rudy's candy store. A pitcher would throw the ball in on one bounce. The batter would have to hit grounders through the infield. Line drives or any types of pop-ups past the infield were automatic outs. In one memorable incident, the late Monte Spellman nearly slid down the sewer to avoid a tag and score. He played tackle football for Midwood, and it was generally understood that tackle football players were crazier than the rest of us.

Fred Foy

Thought of another one. At times when we couldn't get a quorum for a decent stick- or punch-ball game, we'd play Running Bases. All you needed were two bases, two basemen, one ball, and one or more base-ruunners. The basemen were obliged to throw the ball back and forth while the runners got into, and reied to get out of, rundowns. (A rundown was also known as a "pickle.") When you had two or more runners in a pickle at the same time, chaos was sure to follow.

Jackie Kelk

Happy birthday! I thought of another ball game we played often - called "I declare war." Each player represented a country. The player who was It threw the spaldeen up in the air and said, "I declare war on [let's say] Sweden!" Everyone who was not Sweden started running and hiding. As soon as "Sweden" caught the ball, he or she would say "Steop!" and all the runners/hiders would have to freeze. Sweden would then fire the ball at one of them. If Sweden hit the target, then that target-country would be It for the next round, and the world wars would contuinue until the Good Humor man arrived.

House Jameson

Good list. On 71st Street we played a lot of poison-ball (a form of dodgeball).

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

Blogs I Read