Monday, June 15, 2015

(pt. 3 of 5) CADACO BAS-KET
I’m not old enough to land deep within the “boomer” parameters, but close enough to catch the tail end of some of the childhood remembrances. Like many pre-teen boys, I was a sports fanatic. Football, basketball, and baseball. When it was too dark or cold or rainy to go outside to play the sport of the season, I would turn to sports board games. There were a few that were popular at the time and, at my pleading, my parents were good enough to buy them for me. Video games like Madden Football didn’t exist in those days. Television was for watching TV, the phone was for phone calls, and there were no household computers around. Imagination required. All of these games are designed for two people to play as opponents, but on the occasions when a friend either wasn’t available or was unwelcomed by my parents (odd hours, school night, etc…), I’d play the games by myself.
I’ve included YouTube links and photos because it’s difficult to describe these games with words. I tried my best to do so anyway.

This game required no electricity and consisted of a simulated cardboard basketball floor with 14 symmetrically placed holes. The game came with a ping pong ball that was tossed on the basketball floor, which was uneven in a warped kind of way thus creating a randomness as to how the ball would roll and consequently, which hole it would eventually land in. Within the holes were little metal – I don’t know what to call them so I’ll say “poppers” -  that were spring loaded. On each side of the court there were levers that would control the poppers for six of the holes. A sheet of cardboard with a small basket attached was inserted in upright  position on each end of the court. When the ball landed in one of the six holes (located at varying distances and angles) controlled by a player, the player would pull the lever back to a certain degree and let go, thus “popping” the ball towards the basket in hopes of making the shot. The skill was in how far the lever was pulled back and, I suppose to some degree, how the lever was released. I stated there were 14 holes, but only six per side were lever controlled for shooting. There was one hole under each basket with no popper in it. If the ball landed in that hole it meant the ball should be lined up for a free throw. There was a manually operated scoreboard above the baskets.
And that’s about it. Primitive by today’s standards but keep in mind, in those days the best a kid could do for a bedroom hoop was a rolled up pair of socks and a Folgers coffee can with the bottom cut out. We’ve come a long way, baby. It was best to play the game in an open area or by a wall ‘cuz there’d be occasions when shots would sail completely over the backboard. You didn’t want to spend a lot of time trying to retrieve the ball from under the couch or the bed. I remember arguing with my Dad when we’d play as to whether the ball should be allowed to roll randomly after a made basket. He said yes, but I said it should be placed in the other team’s farthest hole. There shouldn’t be any “make-it-take-it” as far as I was concerned.

Part 2: CADACO foto-electric FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME GAME                                                                                   Part 4: CADACO ALL-STAR BASEBALL

No comments: