Today is foggy and damp with rain expected. I noticed stalwart golfers when I drove pass the course. Some were pulling their clubs while others rode golf carts with the striped awning tops. In the fog, I could only see the golfers closest to me. The others were mere outlines. When I crossed the bridge over the river, the houses along its banks were barely visible. It started to rain a bit as I turned onto my street.
As I was driving home, I saw a car with only one lit headlight and right away I said padiddle out loud which surprised me as I hadn’t given the padiddle game a thought in almost forever. My padiddle had to have come from the furthest reaches of one of my memory drawers and was automatic as if I’d played the game only yesterday. When I was a kid, we played padiddle only at night because no cars back then had daytime running lights. I remember the first person to yell padiddle had to touch the ceiling faster than anyone else to win the game. We used to get points, and, obviously, the winner was the one with the most points. When I was younger, the winner got to punch one of the losers in the arm. When I was older, the last person to hit the ceiling had to remove an article of clothing. We never did play that game to its finish.
Padiddle reminded me of, “Jinx, you owe me a coke.” That came into play when two people said the exact same thing at the same time. The easy version ended there, but sometimes you got a punch if you didn’t say it first and other times you were jinxed and couldn’t talk. I don’t remember ever getting that coke.
I love seeing rock, paper, scissors still being used, even if it is in TV commercials. That game was the almighty arbiter when we were kids. It started when your closed fist was banged three times on the palm of your other hand then out came either rock, paper or scissors. If you won, there was a set action. If paper, your out-stretched fingers, won, it covered the rock, your opponent’s fist; a rock hit scissors which meant the scissors were now broken and had lost. In turn the scissors cut the paper and won. Most times we did two out of three.
Out of the memory drawers filled when we were kids come the most amazing things. I haven’t thought about jinx or padiddle in years, but out they came today as if it were just yesterday I punched my brother.