Outgrowing The Tots

For the supreme enjoyment of fun and adult recreation, we have transformed, merged, and infused the neighborhood’s playground with a unit from Intensive Care. Play at your own risk. Insurance is not necessary. It’s not even possible! What were you thinking?

Who says we don’t play games anymore?


We peek behind closed doors, and boo the referees.

We hide from ourselves, and seek our true identity.

We still play dress-up, but only for the sake of conventions,

weddings, and funerals.

Our moods are the only things that swing regularly.

We teeter-totter between inflation and flat broke.

From liberal to conservative, we see-saw back and forth.

We let our problems slide, whilst we skate on thin ice.

The merry-go-round can still be found,

only now it’s in your local department of Health and Human Services.

It’s only a hop, skip and jump to bankruptcy!

Tag is now akin to passing the buck.

We play hopscotch between the bills and bounce checks.

Leap frog is now called the turtle trot and flop.

We spin the bottle to see who has to kiss ass this week.

Ping-pong is but a sound heard under the car’s hood.

Billiards is a billion brain cells misfiring under pressure.

We play the cards we’re dealt, and damn the dealer under our breath.

We’ll always build castles in the sand,

and forever we’ll play war in order to make peace,

as sloppily as children making mud pies.


The 24-hour playground is now “OPEN FOR BUSINESS”

Recess has been lengthened due to the recession.

Pay-per-view is optional and highly recommended!

Master Card and Visa accepted.



39 thoughts on “Outgrowing The Tots

  1. Excelent, excelent uncle!

    I loved the way you describe how adults amuse themselves in the states.
    I loved this game:We hide from ourselves, and seek our true identity.
    We still play dress up … to see that is that is to be able to watch things for real
    I can notice that the thin ice is in the department of health now.
    Every body has to kiss ass lately
    Recess has been lengthed there due to recession, and here due to the swine flue.

    I do not know what to tell you unce, I can see you where inspired I can see you are incredibly taltented.

    It makes me very happy to hear somerthing written by you that has so much magic.

  2. Waves~~~Uncle Tree, Hi mariana. Oh, this is a bit sharp–you play with all sorts of ‘play’–games in order to get at the ‘big game’–and illusions. LIke it. Poetry being playful–like a court jester—yet getting at serious issues. nice

  3. Care for a game of snakes and ladders, Uncle Tree πŸ˜‰
    Before ladders, trees, I guess. Oh those carefree daze!

    Ping pong, eh?

    Nce one,

  4. Thank you, thank you, Mariana!
    Only Americans can relate to this? I had hoped to cover a little
    more territory. You did find my favorite truthful line, though.

    I just started jotting down games Sunday. I don’t even know why,
    or what got it started. Teeter-totter came first and broke the dam.
    I just swam along downstream with it from there. A skinny dipping
    into old, but not forgotten, treasures from the past. I didn’t know
    my magic wand was showing. I better watch that.

    Hugz backatcha, girl!

  5. Can’t say I know snakes and ladders, Ed. Chute!
    Nowadays, a snake can refer to a certain kind of woman.
    She’s not there to climb the ladder. She’s there to bite at your heels.
    Eve and the serpent are One, too. Adam is still limping along.

    We used to have a ping-pong table downstairs. I’d kill you!
    Later on, my brother and I took down the net and set up
    an H.O. Track. You know…those first teenie-weenie electric cars?
    We had scenery too, including trees. The little plastic, green
    army men manned the pit stop. We’d put ’em on the track, too.
    Bam! Bam! Boys learn to be destructive early on. Yes, yes we do.

    Carefree is no longer priceless, if ever it was. Ask any G.I. Joe.

  6. Ye olde board game, Keith, ne’er a battery in sight.

    Checker board with various length snakes and ladders overprinted. Each player took it in turns to throw the dice and starting from bottom left corner advanced the number of squares, with his/her marker, that the throw decreed. If lady luck landed you on the foot of a ladder up you went to the square at its top. If you landed with your next throw on the head of a snake, down you came again. First to the top right square wins that orange for Christmas!

    Life sucks, don’t it !

  7. great to read you again, and great Thank You, for putting all those games in one. some i didn’t recoginze by name, though i am sure i know by their local one. but the messege is clear in any langauge and it wonderfull….

    Osho said: ‘Play!’

  8. Wins the orange what, Ed? Lollypop?
    The kids say ‘blows’ nowadays anywayz, old man.
    Get with the program! πŸ™‚

  9. I was hoping you’d stop by for this one, Val.
    Your sense of humor is quite admirable.
    You wear the kid gloves well.
    A happy camper am I.
    Thanks a bunch!

  10. Some games have a long shelf life, Dhyan.
    You’re a young man. You still have time to learn.

    A rubber tree I am not.
    “Play ball!” Whack!
    Oh show off.

  11. My fair lady,
    I luvz it when you use the word ‘adore’. It sounds so French!
    Swingin’ is your style, I know. Bryan confirmed the kissin’ part.
    Talk about a square dance?!!! I, too, could use to
    doe-see-doe ’bout now, myself. πŸ˜‰

  12. About time it was ‘squeeze’ then.
    Me granfer used to say,’think yerself lucky, boy. to get one (orange.) We had to make do with the peel that the master dropped!’ No, lollipops were not a-peeling.

    Where’s that little sap-sucker πŸ˜‰

  13. But I play dress up for court too…I do wonder if the last portion of my life will be as well lived as the first. Not the wealth because I never knew any of that but the merry go round is there anyone left to grease the thing?

    Liked this wee bit of seriously jocular commentary very much.

  14. Gotcha, Ed. What a healthy prize!
    Rind’s are good for something after all. Mighty fine protection.
    The sap sucker has matured, and is now out blowing bubbles.

  15. Thanks for joining in the fun, walking man!
    How could I forget court? I sent my lawyer to grease up the judge.
    Courtrooms make me dizzy. I don’t fit in at the Docker’s convention.
    At least not with my Haggar polyester perma-pressed slacks.

  16. Australians can relate too Uncle Tree !!!! I love the whimsical facade of your words that belies the awful truth of our modern day “culture” …or lack there of ! A universal dilemma indeed.

  17. I had a predilection for playing Cat’s Cradle during recess, but always got stuck somewhere along the middle of the game.Thank goodness πŸ™‚

    We grow older and expand our playground, stretching the rules…and ways to cheat.

    I am truly enjoying reading your funny, yet insightful entires!

  18. You continue to surprise me, Elva.
    Hello again!

    I’d clean forgotten about my ornery tots. Thank you for bringing it
    back to my attention! This one was a fun breakaway from poetry.

    Cat’s Cradle, eh? So you play, or use to play with strings and twine. Yes?
    How in the world did you get stuck playing that? I was a yo-yo boy, myself.

    C’mon now, what’s this about cheating? With a pretty face like that, well…
    you were probably only being very persuasive in your own way. πŸ˜‰

    It’s an honor to know that you’ve had a look around, without getting lost.
    When one’s confidence is ebbing, a comment like yours saves the day.

    Thank you! Truly, UT

  19. Me? I try to play by all the rules; I was referring to everyone else in the game πŸ˜‰

    I still play, however, my clumsy fingers seem to always get stuck between the crisscross patterns of the string. Playing with twine will do that to you, but it’s always interesting to find a way out of the tangles. Yo-yos are fun–as long as you can handle all the highs and lows! l

    I’m still looking around. Getting lost wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing; it always forces us to find an innovative way out.

    Thanks for making me chuckle, UT!

  20. “…home of the braaaaaaaaaaaaaaaave!”


    πŸ™‚ Game-time, Elva?

    I’ll have to find my game-face, and my black and white
    checkered outfit…since I was the one refereeing over all
    yesterday, it is now my wish AND my prerogative to change
    the dad-blasted rules that I can’t keep track of. On your marks —————
    get set — get lost. It’s good for you! It forces you into satisffff
    action. All this getting high and laying low biz makes me think
    of Yo-Yo Ma. Speaking of rule-breakers… we were playing
    strings, right? Someday I hope to be several fine violins.

    πŸ™‚ UT thanks you back!

  21. We peek behind closed doors, and boo the referees.

    We hide from ourselves, and seek our true identity…

    love these lines…awesome and playful piece..Thanks for playing…

    Happy New Year!


  22. I am so glad you found this amusing, Riika. Thank you! πŸ™‚
    And thanks for the invitation, too. I’ll have to keep you in mind.
    Cheers backatcha, girl! Hope your new year is more than fabulous!

    Sincerely, Uncle Tree

  23. Yes, Jamie. I admit — I may have gotten carried away, as usual
    this morning. Coffee does that to me, you see. Your pigeon poem
    was smashing! Smashing is like…English pig-latin or something.

    Thank you for the exceedingly fine compliment! πŸ™‚ HaPpY NeW YeaR!

  24. Yes! You may go back, Wordywoman.
    It only takes a hand or two of solitaire and there you’ll be.
    Glad you loved it! πŸ™‚ That alone takes me back…

  25. Absolutely hilariously, bone chillingly, ugly, and so true. Brilliant piece Keith
    I know exactly where this one came from! But we live this life and we play to win just once in a while…If we won all the time no one would want to play with us! Your times comin’ …Its not a matter of if but when. May it be sooner than later my friend.

  26. “Absolutely hilariously, bone chillingly, ugly, and so true.”
    Stuart, I gotta tell ya…that is one of the strangest compliments
    I have ever received. But I can’t knock it cuz I like it! πŸ™‚
    Thank you! I am certainly oddly combined.
    I wrote this one in August of 2009. That’s where it came from.
    The potluck theme included festivities, so I thought it’d fit right in.
    About that other — I surely hope your wish for me comes true.

    On winning: I shall quote myself here. From “Knock On Good”

    No good comes to a man
    who treats life as a game with a score.
    Good simply happens. Score is not kept.
    Love is the only winner.

  27. I just wanted to comment and say that I really enjoyed reading your blog post here. It was very informative and I also digg the way you write! Keep it up and I’ll be back to read more in the future

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