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MARY’S MEANDERINGS 5/8/13: …Let’s Play Jacks

Some days…do you find it easy to let childhood memories “crowd out” present day happenings that are going on?

“I do.”

Do you think age might have something to do with letting childhood memories “crowd out” present day happenings that are going on?

“I do.”

Do you sometimes use this reasoning as an excuse for letting your childhood memories “crowd out” present day happenings that are going on?

“I do.”

Days like this…do you recall how fortunate you were to have an older sister to include in your childhood memories?

“I do.”

Today, my sister, Inez, and I are playing JACKS.

We clear the big oak dining table.

She always says, “Let me go first.”

“Remember the fouls and misses,” she says, “Like using the wrong hand to catch the ball, failure to pick up the right number of jacks, or touching any other jack while attempting to pick up a jack,” she boldly instructs. (As if I didn’t know.)

We start the game with ONES. I scatter all the jacks across the table, toss the ball, pick up one jack and after the ball has bounced, I catch it in my right hand, transfer the ball to my left hand and proceed until all the jacks are in my left hand.

Next, TWOS…picking up jacks by twos. Proceeding with threes, fours, fives and sixes.

Our next play is INS AND OUTS. With all the jacks and ball in my right hand, I toss the ball upward, lay down all jacks and catch the ball in my right hand. I throw the ball up again, pick up all the jacks and catch the ball in my right hand and proceed with twos, threes, fours, fives and sixes.

EGGS IN BASKET…I scatter jacks, toss the ball, pick up one jack using my right hand only and while the ball bounces once, transfer jacks to my left hand, then catch the ball with my right hand. When all the jacks have been picked up and transferred to my left hand, the jacks are put in my right hand and I scatter again, proceeding with twos, threes, fours, fives and sixes.

Suddenly, I drop the ball.

“My turn,” says Inez.

UP CAST…DOWN CAST is our next play as she throws the jacks, scattering them across the table with her right hand. I see her toss the ball, pick up one jack after the ball has bounced. She continues until all of the jacks have been picked up and put in her left hand. She proceeds with twos, threes, fours, fives and sixes.

Now she tosses the ball downward for the play of DOWN CAST and proceeds with twos, threes, fours, fives and sixes.

There will be other plays in the next game of jacks…like PIGS IN THE PEN, OVER THE FENCE, SCATTERS and SCRUBS; which was the play we finished with.

I see my sister as she scatters the jacks, tossing the ball, she picks up one jack, scatters it across the table (back and forth) in a scrubbing motion, keeping the jack in her right hand and after the ball has bounced once, she catches the ball in the same hand, transfers the jack to her left hand and proceeds until all the jacks have been scrubbed.

As if it’s really happening…I see her rescatter, fast as she can…scrubbing by twos, threes, fours, fives and sixes to finish our game of JACKS.

An now, I see Mama standing in the doorway.

“Put the oil cloth covering back on the table, girls,” Mama says, “It’s time to eat supper.”

It’s been one of those days for me.

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