Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The History of Yo-Yos

© 2010 Albert A Rasch and
The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles
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The History of Yo-Yo-s,...or at least a guide!

First, I want to thank all the folks that helped get the Yo-Yo's for Troops project off to a good start. Fellows that have heard of the YYfT campaign are anxiously awaiting Yo-Yo's in their care packages, and I have been busy doing a little research on the history of Yo-Yos.

The National Yo-Yo Museum is located in Northern California, in the historic downtown of Chico. The museum boasts the world's largest public display of yo-yo's and contest history. The museum is open year round, and admission is free! There are regular tours every day.

The History of the Yo-Yo page at the National Yo-Yo Museum is simply fascinating! Little did I know that the use of Yo-Yos to pass the time when at war was not without precedence. On the morning of June 18, 1815, just before the Battle of Waterloo, Napoleon Bonaparte himself and his army were seen taking their leisure with their "joujou de Normandie." By the way, that may be where the term Yo-Yo may have come from.

The reference is only a page long, but there are a whole bunch of interesting bits of Yo-Yo facts and trivia with which you may dazzle and mystify your friends, neighbors, and relatives!

Not to be outdone, Duncan Yo-Yo has a timeline of the Yo-Yo. It covers five distinct periods in the history of mankind and how Yo-Yos have evolved along with society.

As archeology has borne out, the yo-yo as we know it has been traced back to 500BC and the Greeks. Can anyone tell me if there is anything we don't owe to the ancient Greeks? Someone found a platter with a depiction of a boy using a yo-yo, and terra cota yo-yo discs have been unearthed, many with mythological creatures depicted on them.

There have been several personages that have used the Yo-Yo at different times. Lafayette, President Nixon, and Abbie Hoffman, all have used the Yo-Yo for a variety of entertainment and political reasons.

It's interesting to note that while the vast majority of comments coming in are positive and encouraging, there have been a couple that were... how shall I put it? Less than enthusiastic. One was from a person in the United States, while the other was from Europe. Both thought that it was a terrible waste of time and resources. I forward them the links to the History of the Yo-Yo, and added my own perspective on why a child's toy would be a welcome distraction. In the end, neither disagreed with the idea and though they didn't volunteer to send a Yo-Yo, I still have hopes!

Now we have a new Banner Flyer! Mike S of Mike's Travels and Travails is flying the Yo-Yo's for Troops banner, and I can't thank him enough. Mike is a great linker, and links to a myriad of outdoor posts, many of them from our very own OBS group.

Brigid has written, what else, another "Best of:  Home on the Range" piece on the Yo-Yo's for Troops. I am always amazed by her writing ability, and if you go up to my "This is How We Roll" page you'll see her in several catagories, including the "Women I Would Like to Meet"catagory and "Real Writers." Brigid has a way of drawing you in with oatmeal raisin cookies, toy soldiers, or snow flakes, and then taking you on a stroll through memory lane. Her command of the nuances of the English language and her prose leave me always wanting more, and embarrased by my meager abilities. Brigid too is flying the banner!

And not to be outdone, Kari, my favorite bear hunting lady, is also flying the banner on her hunting and outdoor (mis)adventure blog I Don't Wear Pink Camo to the Woods. I can't thank her enough for taking the time to help bring some cheer to the fellows out her!

Marian dropped me a note yesterday and said, "I think it is a marvelous idea you have and I know it will keep their minds off of everything thats going on over there and have a little fun." Not only that, but she has offered to blog about the Yo-Yo's for Troops, and fly the banner on her blog, Marian's Hunting Stories!

Again I would like to thank all the folks that have promised to send yo-yo's, and I assure you that there will be plenty of pictures as they start to arrive!

Best Regards,
Albert A Rasch
Member Kandahar Tent Club
Member: Hunting Sportsmen of the United States HSUS (Let 'em sue me.)
The Hunt Continues...

The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles

Though he spends most of his time writing and keeping the world safe for democracy, Albert was actually a student of biology. Really. But after a stint as a lab tech performing repetitious and mind-numbing processes that a trained capuchin monkey could do better, he never returned to the field. Rather he became a bartender. As he once said, "Hell, I was feeding mice all sorts of concoctions. At the club I did the same thing; except I got paid a lot better, and the rats where bigger." He has followed the science of QDM for many years, and fancies himself an aficionado. If you have any questions, or just want to get more information, reach him via TheRaschOutdoorChronicles(at)MSN(dot)com.


troutrageous1 said...

Glad to see this moving along. My wife & I dropped about 5 or 6 in the mail last week. Hope they make it over to you soon!

Emily said...

Yo-Yos are coming your way. I just added a post and have asked my Facebook peeps to check it out also.

Thanks Albert for serving. God bless you!


Anonymous said...

It's the very least I could do ☺