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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Bonecruncher Folklore: Tag (the game) (78* d) RE: Folklore: Tag 20 Aug 07

One, Two, Three.
Mother caught a flea.
She put it in the teapot
And made a cup of tea.

That was another "counting-out" rhyme, used in the Southampton area of UK.

Two of the games described by Mr. Happy actually did have rules, although perhaps in his area or school the had not been passed "down the line", so to speak.

The object of British Bulldog was for one or two persons to be in the centre of the play area, be it a large room, hall or playground, and the other competitors lined up against the wall on one side of the area. At a signal all the competitors would rush to try to get to the other side of the area while those in the middle tried to catch one of them. It was then required for the two "catchers" to lift the caught person off the ground, holding him airborne while shouling "British Bulldog". The caught person would then join the catchers in the middle. The winner was the person who was last left uncaught.

"Port and Starboard" also had additional commands, such as "Boom Overhead" when one would have to lie flat to avoid being struck by the (imaginary) boom of a sailing ship. "Bow" and "Stern" also involved rushing to the requisite part of the "ship". "Man the lifeboats" involved the competitors forming themselves into fours (or sixes if a large group) and sitting line astern. As was said above, it was devil take the hindmost as regards to who was "out".

"Pirates" has already been described but another playground game, usually played by girls, (yes, we were very sexist in those days but playgrounds were divided into "girls" and "boys") was a ball game known as "Queenie" which involved an individual throwing a tennis ball backwards over their head towards a line of other competitors stood behind them. The ball, having been caught by one of the line was then secreted behind a back, sometimes with surreptitious passing along the line. At the call of "Queenie, Queenie, who's got the ball?" the thrower would then be required to turn around and guess who held the ball. If the guess was correct then the ball-holder would become the thrower, otherwise the thrower would throw again.

There was another game, whose name I cannot remember.
It involved two teams, one crouching against a wall to make a long back, often longer than the vaulting box in the gym, while the other team vaulted onto the long back. The object was to get the other team to break, when they would have to reform their long back. If the team macking the back could hold up the combined weight of all of the other team, they had won and the teams changed over.


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