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Archive for August, 2010

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Posted by Big Boo on August 11th, 2010

operationThere are some board games that everybody must have played, if not owned, at some point in their lives, and Operation is one such game.

The workings of the game are derived from one of those steady hand testing games, where you have to pass a loop of wire around another bent piece of wire without the two touching, which will complete a circuit and make a buzzer sound.

Operation took this concept and changed the wire loop into a pair of tweezers and the bent wire into little holes lined with metal. The playing board had a picture of man being operated on, and the little holes were dotted about the body of the man. Each hole had a little plastic bone (more on those in a moment) which the player had to remove with the tweezers. If the tweezers came into contact with the side of the hole they caused both a buzzer to sound and a red light to come on, which was strategically placed to be the man’s nose.

The little plastic bones all had humourous (or should that be humerus?) names such as Funny Bone, Broken Heart and Spare Ribs. In actual fact, one of the bones wasn’t made of plastic, it was instead a rubber band which stretched between the ankle and the knee, and it was called The Ankle Bone Connected To The Knee Bone.

The game also came with a set of cards and some money, and this was supposed to guide how the game was actually played, but personally I just played it by having all the players take turns at trying to remove a piece of their own choosing.

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King Rollo

Posted by Big Boo on August 9th, 2010

King RolloKing Rollo was an animation created by David McKee, who was also creator of the much loved (by me, anyway) Mr. Benn.

The series was about the titular King Rollo, who though he appeared quite grown up (he even had a beard!) he was actually quite child like in nature, playing with toys and, to be frank, being told what to do by his cook and his magician. So it was he spent most of his time learning about the world, ably assisted by his cat Hamlet, who also appeared to be more grown up and worldly wise than his master.

When King Rollo got bored playing by himself he had his next door neighbour Queen Gwen (two castles next door to each other, what a street that must be to live in!) to play with and also fellow King Frank.

The characters in the cartoon did not speak. Instead it was down to narrator Ray Brooks (who also narrated Mr. Benn as it happens) to do all the talking. As I recall he did change the sound of his voice slightly when one of the characters was supposed to be saying something, but it was more a change of inflection rather than a put on accent or something.

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Did You Own A Pair Of Leg Warmers?

Posted by Big Boo on August 7th, 2010

Leg Warmers were all the rage for a time during the 80s, and I believe they seem to be having a small renaissance at the moment, so this week I want you to let us all know if you owned a pair of these socks with no feet.

Probably one more for the girls this week, but I guess there might be a few lads out there who might answer “Yes”.

Did you own a pair of leg warmers?
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You’ll Never Get To Heaven…

Posted by Big Boo on August 6th, 2010

baked bean tinSchool trips were always fun for several reasons. First, it always seemed like a day off school. Secondly, you sometimes got to go to some interesting places. Thirdly, the coach trip often descended into what can only be described as mayhem! Fun mayhem that is!

The teachers would first try to keep everyone amused by playing something like I-Spy, but we soon all bored of that and somebody would try and liven the journey with a group song. I’m not talking something sensible like Kumbaya though, no, it would be something in the Ten Green Bottles vein to start off with.

The kids would get down to about 4 or 5 bottles remaining on the wall, whereupon one of the teachers wouldn’t be able to take it any more and would request a change of song. That’s when You’ll Never Get To Heaven started up. This was usually sung by having one person leading, and everyone else repeating the lines to start with, then everyone would join in for a recap of the verse. Here’s an example verse:-

Oh, you’ll never get to heaven,
In a baked bean tin,
‘cos a baked bean tin’s,
Got baked beans in.

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Stocking Fillers - Suppliers to Father Christmas
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Hulk Hogan

Posted by Big Boo on August 4th, 2010

Hulk HoganBeing British, if you mentioned wrestling to me as a child it would instantly conjure up the image of two fat men with names like Big Daddy or Giant Haystacks bounding around the ring wearing swimming trunks (or worse still, what looked liked a woman’s swimming costume) on Saturday afternoon television.

If you came from the US though, wrestling would likely trigger up something similar yet still entirely different. The fat men were (for the most part) replaced with tall, bronzed, muscular guys, who for some reason couldn’t talk without shouting and pointing their finger menacingly. The wrestlers names were also far more butch sounding, as witnessed by the subject of today’s post, Hulk Hogan.

Hulk Hogan was arguably the most famous face of the WWF (World Wrestling Federation, not the panda logoed wildlife charity, who incidentally forced WWF to change their name to WWE) but had he decided to keep his birth name of Terry Gene Bollea, maybe that wouldn’t have been the case.

In more recent years he has had to change his name to Hollywood Hogan and even wrestled in a mask under the name Mr. America for a time. Ironically this was partly due to not actually owning his own name, and partly due to Marvel comics understandably being a little annoyed at the use of the word Hulk, especially when fans were said to have “Hulkamania” during the height of his career.

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Piglets Crisps

Posted by Big Boo on August 2nd, 2010

pigletsIt’s a little disheartening looking at the array of crisp packets on shop shelves these days. For the most part you can just get under filled packets of normal crisps in various flavours (probably too many flavours too be honest), over priced packets of “extra fancy” crisps and a handful of more interesting crisps such as Quavers, Skips, Frazzles, Monster Munch and Hula Hoops.

In the Eighties it was a different matter. The interesting crisps category had many more contenders. OK, they may have been variations on one of themes mentioned above, but the fact they were different funny shapes and sometimes unusual flavours meant that all still felt unique.

Once such crisp that is no longer with us, and indeed I can’t think of anything that is even remotely close to it, was Piglets. These were potato crisps (I think) in the shape of little pigs, but the best thing was they were three dimensional piggies, not just flat cut out shapes. The crisp itself was actually very thin, and had somehow been puffed up to make a little ball of crisp for the pigs body.

They came in smaller bags than your average packet of crisps, but the bags were absolutely ram packed with crisps, unlike todays pathetic portions.

I’m almost definite that the flavour I enjoyed most was called “Bacon and Bean”, but I’m sure there were other flavours available, I just can’t remember what they were.