Pogs

These things are besties with parachute pants and TLC–they’re a game that predates laser tag and even Mario Kart. They’re pogs, and they are awesome. Pogs was a game where two players stacked an equal amount of cardboard circles on top of each other and took turns throwing a thick plastic disk–called a slammer–down on top of them. Any pogs that landed face down then belonged to the thrower of the slammer, and any that landed face up went back to their owner. This game originated in the ’20s and ’30s in Hawaii and the game was played with milk caps, but it silently slipped into obscurity. Thanks to a math teacher in the ’90s who introduced pogs to his students as a teaching tool, we got to enjoy the game as well. Sadly, most schools quickly banned the game, saying that its very nature mimicked that of gambling. Unfortunately the ban at my school came too late because I had already lost all of my pogs, save this one. At that time I worshiped the Dallas Cowboys (for the record, still a fan, but man they make it tough these days), so this was one pog I absolutely was not going to lose. Unlike a lot of the other trinkets I will write about, this doesn’t come with a convenient life lesson or nugget of wisdom–it just reminds me of sitting cross-legged on the blacktop losing all my pogs I had bought with my whole week’s allowance, but I didn’t care because I enjoyed the thrill of it. Maybe that’s the nugget of wisdom: I should never get into gambling because the thrill will take priority over my practicality.

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~ by russell jander on February 1, 2012.

10 Responses to “Pogs”

  1. Wow blast from the past Pogs. I might even have a couple hiding in a box in the loft. In fact I lie, I taped them to the front cover of a book which is on the shelf next to me.

  2. Oh, I remember the dawn of pogs. And their subsequent banning from school. I suspect that had something to do with 2in thick metal “slammers” being flung across the playground.

    Obviously not my fault.

  3. I actually still have a POG maker. You pick a picture and put it in this little machine that cuts it into a circle and presses it against the sticky side of a blank POG. I actually only played the game a few times, but I was pretty good at it, if I remember correctly :).

  4. POG – passion orange guava from Haleakala Dairy Farms…hahaha! I am drinking POG as we speak…well, mixed with some red wine of course 😉

  5. Hahaha. Loved POGs. Great choice for your post! 🙂

  6. Ooh, I remember these, they were so much fun back in the day.

  7. Whoa, I’d forgotten that these existed. I used to have loads, but I never really got the technique down. I hate to think how much my parent must have spent on things I kept ‘losing.’

  8. Yes! Used to love pogs. I still have one with Apu from the Simpsons on it, and a slammer that says “Italian Stallion.”

  9. Wow. Pogs. Good one!

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