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Golf is a sport right?
#11
The old rope swing is akin to a key-stone species.
When there are no more rope swings over swimming holes, we are done.
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#12
Never did the rope swinging thing. The tree at Red Rock was only a few feet above high tide mark and there were none in the Hunter River 'holes'.

Did I miss one of life's greater experiences?
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#13
Two blokes died a couple of weeks ago on a rope swing over a swimming hole.

That isn't going to help.

Life here hasn't changed as much for kids. Cities are bigger, so city kids have less chance to do much, but rural kids still act exactly the same.

On thing I look back on and wonder why the fuck we did it was a place where a tree had fallen across the mouth of a gully so that about 20 feet of it was above a vertical drop of 100 feet or so. We used to walk over it like it was a footpath.

Nuts.
Love is... that one person whose freshly-warm toilet seat you don't find disgusting.
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#14
Gotta confess I wouldn't have done the rope swinging, or walking on narrow things in high places because of suffering intense acrophobia. My knees wobble on the 2nd rung of a ladder.
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#15
I've lived in ten different states in the U.S. We moved a lot when i was a kid. One thing each new place had in common (and they were often new suburbs) was that the kids of that area had found a place, on the outskirts, that qualified as a swimming hole. And a rope swing was sure to follow. It was a universal, unspoken code of boyhood.

Funny, these places were mostly kept secret from the busy adults. They likely would not have approved. I recall how crazy dangerous some of them were. We had a hard time getting quality rope. We often didn't know the strength of the particular tree branch that was chosen.
The bravest,craziest boy would volunteer to climb the tree for the initial installation of the rope swing. Not me, btw. I was in the next tier of crazy.

In retrospect, what cracks me up about all this, is that the adults didn't have the smarts to intervene in a good way, and provide a public swimming hole and rope swing that were designed for less accidents. Instead, the usual 'grown-up' intervention was to close down the swimming hole; even destroy it, in some cases...and to have police patrol it.
(I used to love running from cops. It became a subtle attraction to the swimming hole mystique.)

In the state of New York, in the 50's, every rural town had its own fabulous public lake or pond. These places were great fun for whole families. In winter, they became skate parks, with hockey games, and groomed hills for sledding, often onto the frozen pond.
In summer, there were swing sets at the waters edge, designed for bailing out into the water.

A fairly standard feature of these places was the 'big-kid's' raft. This was an anchored, floating structure with a tower for a high-dive and slides. The little kids weren't able to swim out there, and the adults were too lazy. What a fabulous creation!

By the mid 60's, the last of the wondrous places were destroyed. No more fun. Entry fee. Rules. No swings or rafts.

Looking back, I think such places are a cost effective means of creating frisky, independent, healthy and happy kids.
One of the dumbest things my society has done, is turn its back on kids.

If i were to design a community, I would start with the rope swing and radiate outward from that.

Adults wreck everything for kids. We were quite capable a having a baseball game without their insidious intrusion. Now, you pay; get uniform; coaches; you may sit on the bench. They turned it to shit.
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#16
(12-13-2015, 07:12 AM)stanky Wrote:  A fairly standard feature of these places was the 'big-kid's' raft. This was an anchored, floating structure with a tower for a high-dive and slides. The little kids weren't able to swim out there, and the adults were too lazy. What a fabulous creation!

That's your fucking softie Americans mate.

We still have them. There are a couple of beauties moored off beaches and lagoons even in the middle of Auckland. (Pop 1.4M) Every single wharf - of which there are a huge number, due to Auckland being situated between two harbours - is packed to the gunwales with kids all summer, leaping off and diving.

There's even a couple of high schools down the end of the island where the seniors all go down to a spot at the local port and jump from about 20' into the water.

Best one I know of, and you don't see many try this one, is about 10 km from home. A very nice waterfall of about 85' high pours into a basin that must be a couple of acres. Just occasionally, some of the local Maori kids (never white kids) will leap off the top of the falls and into the water. Every year or two some teen gets it wrong and breaks his neck or drowned, but life goes on.

Shit, in Rotorua, the Maori kids make a full-on living diving in the outlet one geothermal area for coins.

The wowsers haven't quite finished us off yet.
Love is... that one person whose freshly-warm toilet seat you don't find disgusting.
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#17
I'm such a crotchety curmudgeon. Kind of a 'boy's boy' at heart. It stuns me, what has been lost or stolen from "boy's world" over the last 1/2 century.

The girls of my era were different. It was like they were made for the more civilized life. While the boys were putting up the illegal rope swing, or discovering the breaking point of their bicycle frames (i was big into that research) the girls were playing 'school' or having tea-parties for their dolls. They weren't much into the secret forts and tree houses, nor did they much care about the lure of rail-road tracks.

They didn't even hate church...because they enjoyed the 'dress-up' part of it.
(No wonder we hated them...until the confusion of puberty. What an awful mistake that was.)

sigh.

Anyway, I have to wonder if the aging gals find anything to miss about the older times?
Surely, not the rope swings, so much?

Maybe Di would be so kind as to address this point for me.

The boys of yesteryear (it wasn't just me, honestly...we were a unified force) would seek out the wildest possible place in their area, to explore; climb trees; dig holes; study bugs and snakes; fantasize going aboriginal; get dirty; trash clothes; bleed; lose shoes; get in trouble with mom; try to get out of going to school; build things to foil the bland march of civilization; make explosions; sneak into closed warehouses; try to start back-hoes left by building crews; bleed a lot; try not to cry; attempt to jump off of cliffs with poorly designed wings; etc.; etc; etc.

Girls were very different. Aliens. Opposition forces. Kind-of the enemy, frankly.

What was going on in their pre-pubescent minds while we were fomenting revolution?

Can I blame them for wrecking all the cool shit?
For liking shopping for back to school clothes?
For enjoying the fine china of ceremonial dinners?

And, later on, for embracing all the horrible details of civilized life?
For working make-up and other deceptions for the purpose of de-railing the pure motivations of the "boy" visions?

(I'm still a bit miffed about all of this.)

Why did they allow themselves to get pregnant?
Didn't they know that a decent blow job would hold us off?
That they knew the most effective methods of birth control, when saying "No" was going to leave them out of the prom?

Did they invent the fucking prom?
Why did they need to see a guy like me in a fucking cumberbun and tux?

Didn't that sense how much we hated that shit, even post-puberty?
Didn't they suspect that if they found a guy that enjoyed dressing up for the prom, that he would turn out to be gay?

Seriously, it's late now. You can tell me.

I think I can forgive you now, but I need to know what makes you tick.


(Hmmnn... kind of a rant, i suppose. I'm channeling my inner boy. Tarzan is the role model. Cleanliness is next to despair and hopelessness.)

Soap operas sold soap, and various wash-day miracles...and all the early ads were clearly aimed at females.
They still are.

Why do you want to scrub all the good stuff off of us?

Won't you eventually miss us diamonds in the rough?

Did you invent ties, when we weren't paying attention?

(I hope I don't sound sexist.)
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#18
The boys of yesteryear (it wasn't just me, honestly...we were a unified force) would seek out the wildest possible place in their area, to explore; climb trees; dig holes; study bugs and snakes; fantasize going aboriginal; get dirty; trash clothes; bleed; lose shoes; get in trouble with mom; try to get out of going to school; build things to foil the bland march of civilization; make explosions; sneak into closed warehouses; try to start back-hoes left by building crews; bleed a lot; try not to cry; attempt to jump off of cliffs with poorly designed wings; etc.; etc; etc.

Girls were very different. Aliens. Opposition forces. Kind-of the enemy, frankly.
I too liked to explore and climb trees, was fascinated by spiders and other suburban wild life including the tiny red worms that inhabited the slime in the open gutters. To study them you had to lie on your stomach with your nose 6 inches above the water line. I fantasised about having adventures stimulated by the excitement of the movies - Tarzan, westerns, pirate stories, Robin Hood etc and I was always getting dirty. Unless you came home dirty you hadn't had any fun. My cotton dresses had patches because when climbing fences and jumping off the skirt would inevitably balloon out like a parachute and get caught by the picket palings and cause a rip in the fabric. We didn't make explosions but we did fill balloons with hydrogen which we made by dropping zinc pieces into a bottle of muriatic acid stolen from some father's shed. It's a wonder that experiment didn't maim some of us. We made war by hurling lumps of wet clay at each other across a distance by using flexible sticks and we made our own bows and arrows. We played hopscotch, rounders and French cricket on the road way and in my bedroom on wet days the bed was a pirate ship, underneath it was a cave and the wardrobe was a mountain that we climbed. At the park we played unsupervised on real swings, real monkey bars and high slippery dips and dodged the broken beer bottles left behind by the derelicts. We ate 'plum puddings' that we plucked from the grass without any regard to what dogs may have deposited and sucked honeysuckle flowers while dodging the bees.

What was going on in their pre-pubescent minds while we were fomenting revolution?
See above. All of that freedom was removed from us girls when we reached puberty. Then we had to "behave like ladies". Most schools in cities were segregated into boys or girls only.

And, later on, for embracing all the horrible details of civilized life?
For working make-up and other deceptions for the purpose of de-railing the pure motivations of the "boy" visions?
(I'm still a bit miffed about all of this.)

Why did they allow themselves to get pregnant?
Didn't they know that a decent blow job would hold us off?
We did not. We didn't know anything at all and neither I suspect did most of the boys.

Did they invent the fucking prom?
Americans invented proms. We just had school dances every so often so that kids in single sex schools could touch each other under supervision.

Why did they need to see a guy like me in a fucking cumberbund and tux?
I suspect that the boys mothers were responsible for that level of torture. Maternal payback.

Didn't that sense how much we hated that shit, even post-puberty?
Didn't they suspect that if they found a guy that enjoyed dressing up for the prom, that he would turn out to be gay?
We could sense queer even though we had little idea what it meant given that we were clueless about sex in general.

Seriously, it's late now. You can tell me.
I think I can forgive you now, but I need to know what makes you tick.
Give up that idea. You will never know if you live to be 200.

(Hmmnn... kind of a rant, i suppose. I'm channeling my inner boy. Tarzan is the role model. Cleanliness is next to despair and hopelessness.)
Soap operas sold soap, and various wash-day miracles...and all the early ads were clearly aimed at females.
They still are.
Yep. Part of the social conditioning visited on girls and women. I had a male teacher for just 2 years but he once said that the difference between men and women is that if a man sees a spider spinning a web in the living room he will watch it with interest but a woman will worry that people will think that her house is dirty and will sweep it away. At the time, I decided that I would not be that woman and to this day I have a spider friendly house. I refuse to be shamed which is the weapon used against all women on so many fronts.

Why do you want to scrub all the good stuff off of us? I don't. Just man stink which you should deal with yourself.
Won't you eventually miss us diamonds in the rough? Why? Are you likely to become extinct any time soon?
Did you invent ties, when we weren't paying attention? Men invented ties, not women

(I hope I don't sound sexist.)
You don't. You sound pathetic. Your childhood is long gone. Get over it.
 
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#19
Quote:Maybe Di would be so kind as to address this point for me.

No need darlin'.  Warri and I argue about most things but one thing in common we share is having been raised at around the same time in the same place, only a few miles apart, and it seems shared a similar childhood.

All I need say in reply Stanky is "What she said."

But being me I'll ramble anyway.

There was only one boy around our vintage in the street so we were a 'girl gang'.  We did boy stuff all the time.  We'd come home from the movies and be pirates and cowboys, but we weren't into war stuff.  It wasn't the shooting, we did that, and the swordfights, loved those,  but we just didn't think soldiers were very interesting to emulate.

Dad had built a table and 2 benches in our yard and we'd sit on the table and drum our feet on the benches to sound like horses and we were on a stagecoach firing off arrows from our home made bows  at the marauding Indians.   ...   Which in retrospect was a trifle confused about who was shooting what at who, but didn't matter, it was fun at the time. [Image: lol-038.gif]

Climbing trees wasn't my thing, I fell out of and off everything and have no idea if that caused the acrophobia or if it was terror that made me fall off things.  But otherwise, I was up for riding billy carts and getting my clothes into disgusting condition by going where I shouldn't. 

Maybe it was mothers who curtailed girls to playing with dolls (none of us did, not in public anyway) ... they were simply trying to avoid the laundry work , girls clothes were harder to maintain than boys'.

I had a tiny tea set when I was very young, Mum used to play with it and I went along with it wondering what the hell she was doing that for but that got packed away very very long ago.  I think she realised I thought she was demented by pretending there was actually something in those cups and I was only humouring her.  Told ya, I was a real brat like that.

Why did girls appear to be such wusses to boys ??   Maybe because we let 'em think just that.  [Image: satanic-0052.gif]


TA's description of kids still jumping off wharves reminds me that kids around our area, boys and girls used to do just that.  There were a lot of wharves along the river but most were inaccessible as they were locked off as part of the boatbuilding yards.  The one most gravitated to was part of a marina which doubled as a ferry wharf down at Cabarita.  The ferries were far between so the kids all bombed into the river from it.  Until the day one unlucky boy was first one in and jumped straight in front of Bull shark which was lurking under the wharf.

We heard that it bit him in half, but that must have been embroidered. We heard that it did kill him though and that, rather than adult nannying stopped the fun on that wharf.  
However, in later years that was thrown into doubt as some remembered he had survived with a few scars, and the lack of his appearance in historical shark attack lists indicates that tales of his gruesome end were exaggerated a tad.  
It stopped the fun at the wharf though, the kids all paid their pennies and went to the baths just 100 metres away and jumped from the high board instead after that.

.... gasp ... maybe the whole story was a concoction of the swimming baths owner to hook in more customers?
It sure worked!
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#20
We had a river not too far from where I lived. A couple of times my dad rowed across to the wild side and we had a sort of bush picnic but he never let us dangle even a finger in the water because the river was infested with sharks and they used to take dogs fairly frequently and one woman lost both arms by dangling from a boat.

I wouldn't have swum in that river for all the tea in China, not even in the netted areas, because I feared jelly fish more that sharks and they were present in droves like silent, drifting armies. They were absolutely spooky.

We swam at the local Olympic swimming pool every weekend in Summer. It was always crowded and you risked being knocked unconscious by bigger kids jumping on top of you from the sides. We never had our parents with us for protection and we learnt how to survive by trial and error. And learnt how to escape from nasty boys who wanted to grope you under the water.

Bankstown Olympic Pool
   
Click to enlarge.
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