out here in the sticks on LI we played a variation of chinese hand ball that we called suicide. it was the same ace, king queen setup, but we played against a bbrick wall and the surface was usually grass. you had to throw the ball in an effort to make the next guy miss. if he missed, he had to run to the wall and tag up. the other players would try and retrieve the ball and blast it at the runner. if you got hit before you tagged up, you got an out. three outs and you went “asses up”. Suicide. Usually resulted in some bleeding and the occasionally broken bone from running into the wall too hard or falling after being blasted in the liver by a spaldeen.
Grew up in Clason Point/Soundview section of South Bronx in the 60s’. Played stickball at P.S. 69 (Beat that P.S). We played stickball in the street, open fields, and fast pitched against the wall against a chalk filled-in box(No strike disputes “see the chalk on the ball.. shut up”)At old 69 we would “chip in” and get as many Spaldeens as we could to get up a good game. We would stick em in a fence and line em up, no more in the fence no more game. Pensie Pinkies were for girls, sorry. No self- respecting stickball player would be caught dead with a “pinkie”. We also played Ace King Queen, stoop-ball and box-ball(My house had the best stoop and wall on the block. Also played booties up, skully in the street or on the sidewalks. Crack top, Johnny on the Pony,Ringoleaveo…Wouldnt’trade those memories for anything…..
I grew up in the Pomonok project across from Queens College in the ’50’s and early ’60’s. Where we were Pensies were rarely available, though known of. Any of you remember that spaldeens varied somewhat in pressure. I’d go through the box and find the hardest ones I could. They could be punched further, hit further, but their principle advantage was in handball, if you were over six feet. It was an equalizer when playing with a short guy with better skills. In close play, a low hit would send it caroming over his reach. By the way Geoff, you sure could split a spaldeen with a broom stick or those slightly larger stickball bats that were sold in some places. A baseball bat compresses the ball too much and creates a greater area of contact making a split less likely. We used to turn the splits inside out and throw them. they moved like maniacal frisbees and were almost impossible to catch. Any of you remember three box baseball, a pavement game we played when it was just too hot and humid to play anything else?
Wow! Thanks for the memories.If you came to the block with a bottle cap we would probably under estimate you because that was like a beginners style.I wonder if school chair caps was a Bronx thing ’cause they are the only ones i saw posting it. I used to play on Marion ave. and also Decatur ave in The Bronx during the seventies.We took our mothers can openers to school and took the caps off of the chairs to get a professional’s cap. Small caps were called beenies and large were bullies. Sometimes we used clay instead of wax.If your cap began to roll you’d better yell “no kicksies” or we’d kick it like a soccer ball and more than likely you were guaranteed to lose.I think the drug infested eighties destroyed these games like ringoleavio,slugs,of the curb,stick ball,off the wall,kick the can,…………….you get the idea.
God Bless you and yours MrGodswrench,i use to play slugs in the Bronx and stickball and skellzies i grew up on West Farms Road on the corner of Homes St. and Longfellow Ave.the info. you give about slugs is right thats it no more,no less.I tried to teach some kids and my son here on the island,by the way i live in Ponce,Puerto Rico.But they rather play nintendo,xbox,etc.Iam a born again christian also,Keep The Faith Bro.
i played chinese handball and i love it my way is much much more lenient. we dont have boxes whatsoever and the last person playing handball was the ace-killer because he was so far away from the ace it made it harder for the ace to get it. I learned many different variations of it including one where your allowed to let the ball hit the floor twice but u have to hit the ball onto the wall similarly like american. I also played watermelon which was not my favorite. I also played asses up but only the person who got the other person out could hit him. Oh well. Im tryin to learn how to cut.
This is a South Bronx tale: the setting is mid to late ’60s, Kelly Street 10 hundreds block = longer than most with wall to wall five story tenement buildings. We played stickball starting from the second fire-hydrant sewer lid (homeplate) towards the end of the block. Anything over the “wire” not caught was an automatic homerun. Only two guys ever hit the ball onto the roof of 1069 thanks to a favorable wind: Manny and Junior. We seldom played pitch ball but rather bounced the ball before hitting it or hit it in the air. Balls stuck on fire-escapes or on the roof before the “wire” were outs, down the basements were doubles. sidewalks were all you can run. The wire was a cable hanging across the street behind the second sewer lid which was a few feet behind second base. Only players from our street were allowed to toss their sneakers onto the wire. Those trophies were never taken down. When there weren’t enough guys to play a game, two guys with bats would hit the ball back and forth one from homeplate and the other from the third sewer lid towards homeplate. Spaldeens were the prefered ball, used also for slugs off the wall of Mr. Friar’s building 1045 Kelly Street; or hitting off the stoop of 1048 Kelly Street. Louie, Jorge, Mickey, Augie, Joel, Victor, Junior, Moses, George Pinocchio were the regulars. Stickball on Kelly Street died in 1978 when the whole block was nuked for redevelopment. We also played a mean game of skelzies and had the best aerial kite battles between glass-cord diamonds and razorblade sneekies. Those were the days!
Check this out. My name is Parish Da Moment and back in the day, in south bronx on 173 and Monroe ave in 1982,83,84,85. My friend and i played SLUGS(what people call chinesse handball). Now i have to boast about my street game(SLUGS)ON THIS STREETPLAY DISCUSSION. I still and allways have skills in SLUGS(CHINESSE HANDBALL)even at the age iam in 30ish something.THIS IS A ROLL CALL for anybody who thinks they have any skills. I take on the young,old,male,female cause my skills is still on PAR,for THE OLD TIMER AND YOUNGER CATS,that means I HAVE GAME!!! whew! I had to get this off my chest.To get in contact kingptm [at] yahoo [dot] com Any takers. Eastside all day,all night ya heard!!! PEACE.