Wednesday, June 28, 2006

games we used to play

My children, especially Amir and Adlan, and Atin too, have been pestering me without success for years now to get them the PS 2. Or is it now PS 3? But even without it, they have been playing online. When they met their friends, the subject now was ‘Runescapes’ and the treasures, magic potions, weapons or extra lives they had. Apparently they have been playing and chatting on the free channel for sometimes now. And, they have their own ‘skype’ accounts too.

In our days, computer games were unheard of. Even the computer was unheard of. The closest to it, the calculator, I only get to own in the university in 1981. The idea of computer, my earliest memory of it was from a Disney movie, ‘Computer Wear Tennis Shoe’ they used to screen in Hargraeves Hall. The closest real computer I get to see was at my first job (Mas Othman Associates 1984) but the first I got to play with was the Siemen Nixdorf in ITM Computer Lab (1986). Then you even have to take off your shoes before entering the lab. Such a valuable piece of equipment. In UTM earlier (1981) computer lesson was about the punch card. Stacks of them – for just a simple calculation.

In the younger days, games means something that you must first make before you can play with. It also means having to go out to the bush or to the rubber plantation or the river or the beach to get the right materials. Some you gather from wastes before the term ‘recycling’ was even coined. All the games I knew must be played with others. None I can recall that you can enjoy alone. And playing with others could also means it ended with a fight, g’ocoh, g’omo and the likes.

Believe me, the games we played were rather technically difficult to make. Now, I’m not sure I can make them again. Only recently I tried making the ‘sunai daun nyor’ (coconut leave whistle) but couldn’t make a sound out of it. Now, I don’t think I can make a ‘bedil buluh cina’ that can explode, or ‘kipas buah getah’ that can spin or ‘senapang kayu’ that can shoot the ‘peluru pelepah nyor’. The kites, that’s impossibly difficult.
Maybe somebody who still has the skill can organize a workshop and I’d be happy to join.

To be continued.
[salam to chech-mak and ck for dropping the notes. just noticed them. thanks]

1 comment:


I found your blog when looking for MAS OTHMAN ASSOCIATES...
good notes on our traditional games.

salam perantau